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I am not the biggest fan of snow, mainly because we live in the UK and a few snowflakes seem to cause utter chaos and we don’t cope. Snow is pretty in pictures and on the ski slopes but not always fun in real life. I know. Bah humbug. But snow is fun to play with, and at the toddler groups I run, I sometimes pull out my fake snow, channel my inner Frozen characters and we enjoy it for messy play sessions.
I struggled to find an exact recipe for “fake snow”. There are lots of websites with ideas and suggestions but this is the best way I have found to make snow that can be played with, made cheaply and isn’t too toxic. Also getting measurements right is not always an exact science but this is what we made for our group that gives plenty of play snow. You can divide the “recipe” in half or quarters if you want less.
1kg of bicarbonate of soda. You can buy boxes of this very cheaply from hardware stores. I get ours from Wilko
800ml of shaving foam. Not gel, but the actual foam. 200ml is one standard can, so we use four cans. Buy the cheapest you can get, usually supermarket own, you don’t need fancy stuff.
A surface to make the snow and contain it. We use Tuff trays but you can use washing up bowls or trays. In the summer this is a great activity for outside and easier to clean up too.
Squirt the shaving foam into your tray or bowl(s) and then slowly add your bicarbonate. Use a whisk or forks to fluff it up until you have added all the powder. It will feel cold and will start to go “snowlike” and can be played with, formed into shapes and feels fun for kids to put their hands in. You can use plastic toys or utensils to stir and mess around in it. You can also add glitter (use biodegradable glitter please) if you want to add extra sparkle.
It lasts for a few hours and then can be left to dry out to be disposed of. The best way to clean it up is to let it dry out and then shake it into the bin. Don’t put it down the sink, as it can block drains and is unnecessary chemicals in our water system.