Marker Rules For Children

Seems like there have been a lot of posts lately about children using permanent markers, and how well I remember those days when my own kids, nieces and nephews were that age. Back then, I came up with a solution that would allow them to express their creativity with markers.


I bought them some Crayola non-toxic erasable markers, and let them draw and color on the refrigerator, after laying down the rules and making sure they understood that the fridge was the ONLY place they were allowed to use the markers.

We had our nieces and nephews over often, as they were close to the ages of my own children. To keep them busy, I would set up activity "stations", and use a timer when it was time to rotate, to prevent arguments between them like whose turn it was to do what, etc. They had a blast, and liked having their own markers, too.

One of the other activities was playing with play-doh they had helped make. If anyone is interested on how to make that, I can post the recipe I used when my oldest nephew, who is about 35 years old now, was a little boy. It's very pliable and lasts a long time.

By Auntie from MI

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By Trish (Guest Post)
April 11, 20070 found this helpful

Yes, please post your Play-Doh recipe-I am very much interested in it. I used to have a good recipe when I did daycare in my home, but it is not in my recipe file any longer & I have 4 great-nieces & 2 great-nephews that love to play w/play-doh now.


Gold Post Medal for All Time! 519 Posts
April 11, 20070 found this helpful

I would keep the kids away from permanent markers altogether - When I was a kid we drew with CHALK which was much easier to clean up after - you all might try that for a change. It's great on concrete - any hard surface - my mother used to let me draw on the painted walls -

By (Guest Post)
April 12, 20070 found this helpful

Trish, here's the play-doh recipe from my 1974 "The Everything Book 'Treasury of Things for Children to Make and Do."
This one will stay soft and pliable for a long time if kept wrapped in plastic in the refrigerator.*


Mix the following ingredients together:
1 cup flour
1/2 cup salt
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 cup water

Heat 2 Tablespoons cooking oil in saucepan.

Add other ingredients to heated oil in pan, and cook for three minutes, stirring constantly. Drop the ball of dough onto waxed paper and let it get cool enough to handle. Knead the dough, separate it into two or more portions, and color as desired with food coloring.

FYI: I usually doubled or even quadrupled this recipe and it worked just as well.
I always had a houseful of nieces and nephews, plus my own kids. Later I also had a home child day care. So each child had his own batch of each color. *I stored each color separately in a sandwich bag, then again in an air tight zip lock bag labeled with child's name, so each child had their own zip-lock bag containing all the colors.


That way if they chose to make something to show their parents later, or mix colors, it was their own to do so with and saved any squabbling over it!
They participated in making the playdoh by taking turns around the table to measure, count and mix the ingredients before I mixed it with the hot oil (it thickens very quickly when mixing on the stove under less than the three minutes the recipe says.) They loved kneading the food coloring in, also, They used an assortment of plastic cookie cutters while playing, which later I let them wash in a tub of warm soapy water- so that helped get most of the food coloring off their hands.
*Another good storage idea for this playdoh is the plastic containers from pre-made frosting, which I've had family members save for this purpose.

I have great nieces and nephews now, too- 11 of them, and some of them have been over to make play doh. My soon to be born grandson will have his turn in a few years, too. Well, have fun with the little ones, Trish!

By "Auntie" from MI (Guest Post)
April 12, 20070 found this helpful

Sorry I forgot to add nickname to play doh recipe I just added for Trish.

May 15, 20080 found this helpful

Thanks for your suggestions,after having just found my 2 1/2 yr old marking up our rug with a sharpie I will need to rethink our storage and rules for markers. I guess it really didn't help that my husband had to point out that he knew this was going to happen and that I was stupid.


Any suggestions on how to handle a know it all husband?


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