Incy Wincy Play-doh Spider Activity

Incy Wincy Spider climbed up the water spout,

Down came the rain and washed the spider out.

Out came the sunshine and dried up all the rain,

and Incy Wincy Spider climbed up the spout again.

I have been singing this nursery rhyme for the best part of 4 years. Both kids love it and it’s one of the first ones they started doing the actions to – squidgy little fingers attempting to make like a spider crawling up in the air, so cute! They love stories about spiders, spider toys, spider crafts and spider activities.

Recently we rediscovered a big hairy remote control spider toy that Monkey had been given as a present and that inspired the Play-doh session we were about to do, so we set about making an Incy Wincy Play-doh spider.

I’ll be honest, I’m a bit of a Play-doh purest. Those that follow me on Facebook may know how much it hurts me to see colours mixing and I’ve previously avoided bringing any other materials into our Play-doh sessions. However, I recently had the revelation that this was completely limiting the kids’ creative learning and not making the most of Play-doh as a medium. Mixing colours, while painful for me to watch (and more often than not ending in balls of brown or purple Play-doh), teaches the kids about colour theory and allows them to use and strengthen their finger muscles kneading the colours together, not to mention creating a far more interesting visual and artistic result than a single colour.  So I am now trying very hard to take a deep breath and let go of my Play-doh based anxieties and just let the kids get on with their process, I keep reminding myself that the Play-doh is theirs not mine. It is for their play, their learning and their creativity, not for me to keep pristine in colour co-ordinated little pots. It’s just as well that I’ve adopted this new mantra as the munchkins had cottoned on to my anxiety and seemed to take immense pleasure in deliberately mixing the colours up in front of my eyes!

Play-doh Spider Play

playdoh spider supplies

Materials: To make our Play-doh Spiders I gathered together the above supplies – Play-doh, pipe cleaners, googly eyes and beads (optional).

Method: First roll the Play-doh into a ball to make the spider’s body – this is a great exercise for little hands. Then cut the pipe cleaners into approximately 5″ pieces (or as desired), fold in half and insert into the spider’s body to make the legs. I found it easier to bend out a little bit at the top to stick into the Play-doh. Don’t forget to bend in a little bit at the bottom as well to stop the wire at the end poking the kiddos. If you are using beads thread them on to each leg as little shoes. Make 8 legs in total, 4 on each side. Finally press in google eyes, we just used 2 eyes but you can use as many as you like!

He looks like an Incy Wincy doesn’t he?

Monkey then had a great time sending balls of Play-doh up and down a water pipe (an empty kitchen roll tube) while singing the song. We did try to get the whole spider in there but the legs made it a bit tricky!


He also insisted on then giving the hairy spider toy a make over – this gave me more anxiety than the Play-doh colour mixing as I knew it would be impossible to get all the Play-doh remnants out of the furry spider……and breathe…….!!!



Let me know what you think and if you fancy a go yourself! Leave me a comment below, I would love to hear from you.

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