To entertain your children in a fun and original way, offer them to play with moon sand. This material with a name evoking dreams and imagination can be endlessly shaped and occupy your children for hours. Moon sand is commercially available, but you can make it very simply at home. Get the few basic ingredients and take your children to another world!
Make moon sand with sand and cornstarch
- 700 g of cornstarch (Maïzena) (2 doses)
- 350 ml of water (1 serving)
- 1, 5 kg of fine sand (4 doses)
Prepare moon sand with baby flour and oil
- 2 kg of flour (8 doses)
- 250 ml baby oil (1 serving)
Make moon sand with cornstarch and vegetable oil
- 1 kg of cornstarch (Maïzena) (6 doses)
- 150 ml of vegetable oil (1 serving)
Method 1 of 3: Make moon sand with sand and cornstarch
Step 1. Pour the water into a basin
To prepare your moon sand, choose a container that is easy to clean and does not fear scratches. Opt for a large bowl, basin or plastic bin.
- To create colored moon sand, pour a few drops of food coloring or gouache into the water and mix. Use a water soluble product so that it disperses properly in water. The moon sand will thus be colored uniformly.
- Surprise kids with glow-in-the-dark moon sand. To do this, pour phosphorescent paint into the water.
- Awaken children's sense of smell by scenting the water with liquid vanilla extract, cinnamon hydrosol or lemon juice. Note that you can also incorporate the aroma of your choice at the end of your preparation.
Step 2. Stir the cornstarch into the water
Using a spatula, homogenize your mixture. As the cornstarch tends to clump together easily, stir vigorously until you get a smooth, lump-free texture.
Step 3. Customize the sand
Colored sand can be expensive, buy clear, fine sand or play sand that you can decorate at your convenience. Note that it is not necessary to color both the sand and the water.
- Take the kids to an imaginary world by adding the equivalent of a few tablespoons of glitter in the sand.
- Color your sand to make it more attractive. To this, add powdered pigments or crushed chalk. Create multi-colored moon sand by dividing the sand into several containers and adding a different dye to them. You can also use a freezer bag. Fill half of it with flour and colored powder. Close the bag and mix to color the sand.
- To both flavor and color the sand, you can add a sachet of powdered flavored drink or spices such as cocoa, cinnamon, paprika or turmeric. To awaken children's sense of smell, consider spice blends for pies like pumpkin pie.
- It is also possible to use natural dyes. Indeed, vegetable juices such as beetroot, spinach or carrot can color your sand.
Step 4. Stir the sand into the water and cornstarch mixture
Stir continuously with a whisk or spatula until you get a smooth texture. Note that you can also mix the sand and starch and then add the water, which gives more control over the consistency of moon sand.
- Prefer playing sand sold in hobby shops to that you can pick up on the beach, in sandboxes or on construction sites. The sand thus available is in fact often very dirty or polluted.
- If you prefer, you can buy pre-colored sand from hobby stores or even from dedicated interior design departments.
Step 5. Prepare for the activity
Moon sand is infinitely moldable and does not dry out. Let your kids have as much fun as they want while watching them.
At the end of the activity, store the moon sand in a bag or in a tightly closed jar. Store it in a cool, dry place. You can keep it for two to three months. If the moon sand has become too hard, moisten it with two or three tablespoons of water to make it usable again
Method 2 of 3: Make moon sand with baby flour and oil
Step 1. Pour the flour into a bowl
The combination of flour and baby oil gives a pleasant touch to moon sand. Your children will be all the more impressed. To make multicolored sand, you can divide the flour into different containers or color it as you go.
Step 2. Garnish with the flour
Prefer dry elements in order to mix them more easily with the flour. This is because liquid products run the risk of clumping together and causing lumps to form. However, you can slightly moisten the flour to facilitate the coloring process.
- Color the flour with a powdered item such as food coloring, crushed chalk or pigment.
- To both flavor and color the flour, stir in a sachet of powdered flavored drink.
- Give a magical dimension to moon sand by sprinkling the equivalent of a few handfuls of glitter in the flour.
- Scent the sand with vanilla sugar, cocoa, cinnamon or nutmeg. You can also use a ready-made spice blend or make it yourself.
Step 3. If desired, personalize baby oil
To flavor or color it, you have to use fat-soluble products to make sure that they mix in the oil. If you like the smell of baby oil, you don't need to add more flavor to it. Note that you can choose to spice up the oil or the flour depending on the elements you have.
- Color with fat-soluble liquid food coloring. Prefer colorings specifically designed for pastry or confectionery, as they disperse more easily in oil.
- Scent baby oil with essential oils, liquid vanilla extract or fruit extracts like orange or strawberry.
Step 4. Mix the oil and the flour
Pour the baby oil into the flour and mix as you go. You can mix by hand or use a spatula or a whisk. You can also involve your children in this step and thus prepare them for the activity.
Step 5. Set up the activity
Make up a story to stimulate your children's creativity. Imagine an aquatic world for them to model a giant octopus, a tale to build a castle or shape the moon itself.
If the activity is intended for very young children, be careful that they do not rub their face with their hands and that they do not ingest moon sand. This is because while baby flour and oil are relatively harmless elements, dyes and perfumes can have side effects
Step 6. Store moon sand in an airtight container
To be able to reuse your moon sand, store it in a jar or in a resealable bag, away from heat and humidity. Do not tamp down the sand too much so that it can be reused more easily.
If your moon sand has dried out, you can restore it to its original texture by adding a few tablespoons of water
Method 3 of 3: Make moon sand with cornstarch and vegetable oil
Step 1. Pour the cornstarch into a bowl
You can replace the starch with corn or wheat flour. The starch being very white, the moon sand will have an aspect reminiscent of snow.
If you want to create multicolored moon sand, you can divide the starch into different containers beforehand
Step 2. Add dyes and fragrances to the cornstarch
It is easier to combine the dry ingredients with each other. To color and flavor the starch, prefer powdered elements.
- To give moon sand a fairytale dimension, add white glitter and leave the starch unstained. You will thus obtain a beautiful moon sand with iridescent reflections.
- To make colored moon sand, all you need to do is add pigments or powdered chalk.
- To flavor and color your moon sand, add a sachet of powdered flavored drink to the starch.
- To awaken children's sense of smell, opt for spices from your kitchen. Add a few teaspoons of cinnamon, cocoa, vanilla sugar, paprika or turmeric.
- Do not use liquid extracts or oil-based ingredients. Reserve them for customizing vegetable oil.
Step 3. Season with vegetable oil
For this, it is preferable to use liposoluble products in order to obtain a better dispersion of the color and the fragrance. Note that it is not necessary to garnish both the oil and the flour. You can customize only one of the two items depending on what you have.
- For example, you can use tempera, oil-based liquid dyes, or food coloring intended for confectionery and baking. These are in fact specifically designed to color butter or chocolate.
- To perfume the moon sand, you can pour a few drops of an essential oil of fruits, flowers or bark. You can also use liquid vanilla, bitter almond or orange extract.
Step 4. Pour the vegetable oil into the cornstarch
Gradually add the oil to the starch to control the texture of your moon sand. To get a powder snow appearance, your cornstarch should not be too wet. Adjust the amount of each ingredient until you get the desired result.
If you don't want your child to play in the snow, this moon sand recipe is a great alternative to keep them entertained while staying indoors
Step 5. Set up the activity
Once the moon sand is ready, let your child mold it according to their imagination. While watching him, stimulate his creativity by telling him a story or asking him questions.
Step 6. Store moon sand in an airtight container
At the end of the activity, store the moon sand in a resealable jar. Keep it in a cool, dry place such as a closet or in a closed toy box.
You can keep moon sand for several months, allowing you to reuse it. If it's dried out, add a few tablespoons of water to revive it. Mix lightly with your fingers before offering it to children
- Tempera is a painting technique based on the emulsion between water-based paint and egg. This type of pigment is therefore more suitable for a moon sand oil recipe.
- You can replace cornstarch with flour.
- You can find oil-based food coloring in hobby stores or in commercial baking departments.
- Moon sand can be stored for a long time, provided it is protected from light and humidity. It does not dry out and, if necessary, can be easily revived.
- Essential oils are available in the cosmetics department on the market or in organic food stores.
- All moon sand recipes can be spiced up with color, fragrance or glitter.
- The smell of moon sand can make children eat it. Be sure to warn them that moon sand is inedible and watch them. If the main elements are safe, adding glitter or essential oils can be bad for children.
- Likewise, moon sand can be irritating to the eyes and nose. Be careful that children do not rub their eyes, nose or mouth. If contact occurs, rinse immediately.