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Mess Making & Anxiety

Mess making can be anxiety provoking for some parents.

Find a term that sits well with you, set up a "free range" area to allow for the mess making. Set limits around when it can be used and what needs supervision.

Call it sensory exploration, deconstructed painting, crossing the midline development, memory making "Once a week only"

Why is mess making important?

Free Range sensory experiences help children develop problem solving skills, confidence in play and sensory awareness.


  • Let them face paint your face and their own faces.
  • Create a mud pie pit make magic potion jars, adding found objects, water, paint, oil, etc place down large pieces of paper and finger paint make liquid chalk paint with food dye, cornflour and water and paint the back fence, or the pavers.
  • Trace their bodies on newspaper or butcher paper and colour, paint or collage them.
  • Get a small tub of soapy water and create a car wash for matchbox cars paper mâché a balloon give them a mixing bowl, cornflour and water to experiment mix coloured water to learn colour combinations.
  • Use sticks and yarn to make a weaving build a creation from recyclable pieces - milk bottles, food packaging, cardboard boxes.