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Modelling Clay

by Georgie
(Seatle, Washington)

Art Activity For Children: Modelling Clay

Art Activity For Children: Modelling Clay

My daughter loves using modeling clay, and we try to keep her well supplied!

We have tried all sorts, such as Fimo and Sculpty, which are just too hard for her little hands. I have to soften them for her before she can use them. They also require baking to have a permanent item.

We've also bought artist's clay for her which she loved, but we didn't have any way to fire her creations, and it needed to be used outside really because of the mess. So we looked for an alternative that could be used inside easily and the one we like the best is the
Crayola Model Magic Modeling Compound, which dries hard overnight so you don't have to bake it.

We get the big tubs which have assorted pouches of the clay inside. Sometimes we get just white or a tub of neutral colors, because they can be decorated afterward by painting or using felt pens etc. But the colored packs are fun too, as you can mix them and create wonderful marble effects or use different colors to represent different parts of something.

The only disadvantage, is it starts to dry out after a little while, although you can dampen it to take it back to it's original consistency. Be warned, you can't leave the finished items outside, even when dry, they are not waterproof.

She loves getting her hands into the clay, and would much rather do an art activity like this, than say painting. I think because she is quite a tactile child.

She has made all sorts of things from little pots or bowls, jewelry, such as badges and beads, wall plaques, photo frames, a wind chime - but that doesn't tinkle like a ceramic pottery one would. The Crayola clay dries almost a bit rubbery, so it doesn't have a nice tinkle!

She is going to start a pottery class with a local potter, which will give her a much wider experience of using clay, and a potters wheel.

Maybe we have a budding ceramic artist on our hands!

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