CLAY NATURE IMPRESSIONS
Nature Art activities for the school holidays!
We stumbled upon a gorgeous book by Cathy James, The Garden Classroom. One of the activities contained in the book is Clay Leaf Impressions.
You’ll first need to take the kids on a treasure hunt, perhaps to the local park or bushland, to collect interesting leaves, nuts or sticks that have fallen to the ground. This could be a great way to get some fresh air first thing in the morning before the summer sun gets too hot.
Then you’ll need some clay. You can buy pre-made air dry clay but it’s easy to make and only requires a few ingredients. This recipe comes courtesy of Mudworks.
- 1 cup bi-carb soda
- 1/2 cup cornflour
- 2/3 cup warm water
Step 1: Mix bi-carb soda and cornflour together in a saucepan.
Step 2: Add warm water and stir until smooth.
Step 3: Over medium heat, boil and stir until it is the consistency of mashed potatoes.(This was really interesting – all of a sudden, the smooth mixture made big, gloopy bubbles and then it definitely resembled mashed potatoes!)
Step 4: Put on a board to cool a little. Knead it until it’s smooth and then it’s ready to use. Make your impressions, cut the shapes with a cookie cutter and leave to air dry until firm. (This could take 24-48 hours depending on how thick you’ve rolled your clay.)We used a round cookie cutter to cut our ornaments.
We then used the end of a straw to make a hole in the clay so we could loop some string though once they’re dry to hang the ornament.
What can you do with your completed creations? Here are some suggestions:
- Use for unique gift tags
- Make a hole on both sides and then string/tie together to make a nature garland
- Decorate a tree in your backyard