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Tuff Spot Ideas For Kids

If you only ever invest in one item for your children then I would 100% recommend a tuff spot tray. It has been without a doubt one of the best purchases I've made. I use mines nearly every day. They are great for setting up activities on, especially messy ones.

So the only downside of a tuff spot tray is that it is quite bulky. I keep ours behind a movable drawer in the kitchen but you could perhaps keep it under the sofa or outside.

I'm a big believer that activities should be quick and easy so I've compiled a list of easy to set up activities you can do on your tuff spot tray. You can find tuff spot trays online or in B&Q.

Tuff Spot Tray Ideas

Colour Sorting

This is so easy and quick to set up. Just grab lots of different coloured items from around the house and place in the middle of the tuff spot tray. I added some coloured plates for the colour sorting but you could add coloured paper.

Flower Soup

This is ideal for warmer weather as the water may end up all over your child and tray! Full blog post can be found here.

Shaving Foam

Shaving foam is great for older children to explore with. Our favourite way to use shaving foam is to create snowy tracks with diggers/vehicles.

Car Painting

You can use any cars but we like using Duplo cars as they are chunky to hold and less fidgety for little hands. Some paper and paint is all you need for this activity.

Rainbow Rice

If you have coloured rice already then this is a really quick set up activity. If you don't have any coloured rice then just use normal rice or oats. Tip - use a mess mat as it will catch most of the spilled rice. You can read my blog post here on rainbow rice.

Diggers and Sand

Using some play sand set up a digging site with some stones and twigs. If you don't have play sand then you could perhaps use oats or flour.

Baby Bath

This is a lovely toddler activity. Just a plastic baby, baby bath and a sponge. Be prepared for it to escalate and maybe have a towel on standby.


Setting up a farm tuff spot sounds complicated but you only need a couple of additions to make a small world. We use some of our farm animals with some kitchen staples to create a sensory play.


The simplest activity you will find. You only need chalk. Allow your child to chalk the tuff spot tray, then let them rub it out and start again.

Water Pouring

One of our all time favourite things to do is water pouring especially when the weather is nice and you can get outside and not worry about any spillages. You can read my blog post here.

Conker Scooping

A seasonal one but if its not Autumn then perhaps substitute for plastic Easter eggs or pom poms. Use lots of scoops and tubs and you have an easy toddler set up. You can read my blog post here.

Water Beads

If you've not discovered water beads then you are missing out! These weird little balls are such an amazing sensory experience. You can shop them here.

Mud Kitchen

This is one of our favourite tuff spots. All you need is some old kitchen utensils, mud and some water. It will get messy but it is so much fun. You can read my blog post here.

Sweet Shop

Setting up your own shop is a great way to play with your tuff spot. We've set up our own sweet shop using ours. You can read my blog post here.

Angel Delight Sensory Box

This is a great sensory play activity that is also taste safe for younger children. The Angel Delight makes for a great sensory experience. Full blog post can be found here.

Exploring Colours

If you have a toddler who is learning colours then gathering lots of different coloured items is a great way for them to explore.

Sink or Float

I did this activity with my five year old to encourage him to write during lockdown. Such a easy but effective experiment for little ones to complete.

Numicon Counting to Ten

This is a great activity for little ones learning to count. Lots of learning through play and working little hands. You can find my full blog post here.

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