z art & kid's stuff

play clay

Make Some Play Clay
and Create Critters

Here’s what you’ll need:

A grown up person to HELP you.
1/2 cup table salt (not kosher or sea salt)
1/2 cup hot water
1/2 cup cold water
1/2 cup cornstarch
a few drops of food coloring in 3 or 4 colors

Mix the salt and hot water in a large pan. PLEASE – don’t ever use the stove without a grown up to HELP you. OK? So.. ask your helper to bring the salt and water to a boil over high heat. Put the cold water in a small bowl and stir in the cornstarch. Add coloring now, if you want your clay to be red or green or yellow. We usually leave ours white and then paint our little critters with acrylic hobby paints. Now, add the cornstarch mixture to the boiling salt water and stir hard to keep it from lumping up. Continue cooking the clay over low heat until it becomes stiff.

After the cooked clay is stiff, carefully turn it out onto a bread board with a big spoon. Let it cool completely and then knead it until it gets smooth. Now it’s ready to use. Or, you can wrap it up tightly in plastic and store it in an air tight container for a few days.

Your clay critters can be preserved by letting them air dry at room temperature for 3 or 4 days, or by baking them in the oven at 200 degrees F° for about 2 hours.

Remember, you promised not to use the stove without a grown up to help you.

**To make Christmas tree decorations, roll out the dough about 1/4 inch thick, then use cookie cutters to make ornament shapes. Use a toothpick to make a hole at the top for a string or ribbon. Bake until dry and decorate any way you want.