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Messy play means fun play!

Does the thought of messy play at home, getting the paints, glue, feathers, glitter and gloop out fill you with dread? An activity with your child that sounds fun, but the reality is the prospect of cleaning up everywhere afterwards puts many parents off.

However, research has shown that messy play is a great way for your child to learn and develop – using all their senses to explore textures and even tastes (sometimes!). These sensory experiences help children to develop an understanding of the world that surrounds them.

So, wipe that brow as we have great news – at the YMCA we embrace the opportunity to roll up our sleeves and get mucky at any chance – whether it’s at a Nursery, pre-school or simply at one of our community messy play sessions – meaning that you can keep your house clean, but your child still benefits and has masses of messy fun!


If you want to get involved at home, here are a few simple ideas you can try:

  • Go outside – jump in a puddle or squish some mud
  • Play in the bath – with bubbles, or empty bottles
  • Get crunchy – use dry food such as pasta, cornflakes or rice crispies and add some small toys e.g. cars or dinosaurs are perfect
  • Get squelching – alternatively, use wet foods such as jelly, cooked spaghetti or baked beans
  • Creative – use glitter, sand, beads, buttons – anything tactile, and the more colourful the better!

At YMCA, we enjoy learning and encouraging creativity. If you think your child would enjoy messy play, then why not pop along to our next session near you .We currently run sessions at the following locations:

  • Andover
  • Woolston
  • Portsea
  • Eastleigh
  • Shanklin
  • Newport
  • Fairthorne Manor – coming soon, follow our Facebook page for updates.


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