I am the kind of teacher who is not afraid of getting messy, but sometimes it is nice to have a two- paper- towel- job instead of a five- beach- towel- job; It is especially nice if in many respects it is every bit as fun.
The project is simple- set out a few containers of food coloring in primary colors and plastic ziplock bags full of shaving cream. Allow the children to add food coloring to their bag, squeeze the air out of it, zip it, and allow the children to play with the bag. Some of them squish it, some roll it around, and some push it around on the table. This is still a great sensory experience for them, and as an added bonus they learn about mixing colors!
For other fun shaving cream activities check out these blog entries:
Building Experiences (scroll down to the bottom for a cool building project with shaving cream)