Step 1: As a Montessori toddler teacher, I've had the great opportunity to try out activities that I have found in books from working at the library and have to say that working with shaving cream is my favorite so far:
Step 2: The idea behind working with shaving cream on a tabletop is that the children are stimulating their tactile senses while learning about colors.
I've also found that if you spray a mound of colored shaving cream in front of a rowdy child, turn up the opera music (I am immensely found of Andrea Boccelli), and dim the lights, you are sure to induce a calm in both you and the child.
Step 3: My poor assistant teacher was not as enthused about the idea of arming eight two-year-olds with shaving cream and food coloring...
...as the clean-up can be a bit alarming, but as she watched one of our most active (read: hyper and wild) children rub circles into the tabletop methodically, she admitted that it was a type of a "zen garden."
Step 4: I love to try out these activities on my daughter in the afternoons before dinner.