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    « Doodling The Time Away | Main | Art & Visual Journaling »

    Kids: Polymer Clay


    Today the kids and I experimented with soft FIMO polymer clay.

    1. The little one picked three colors of FIMO. I rolled 1/4 package (using the 2 oz package) of each color separately using a large wooden rolling pin. It was different than rolling pie crust, as you had to press on the middle of the rolling pin with your palms more than holding it by the handles. The clay stuck to the rolling pin, so I just left it there and rolled back and forth. I rolled so it was thin, but not so thin that I couldn't pull it off the rolling pin.
    2. We put the three colored sheets on top of each other, lining up one side fairly closely. The color the little one wanted on the outside was on the bottom.
    3. With a kitchen knife, I cut the sides into a rectangle (not precise) of all three colors, since the original sheets were all different sizes.
    4. One of the tricky parts for the kids was putting a tiny fold on one of the sides and then using the palm of one hand, rolling the sheets up into a "cane." I made that first little fold, and my daughters "rolled" the clay, moving and lightly pressing with the palm of the hand to keep it evenly rounded. I would say, "OK do the left side" for example so they rolled it evenly. As it was rolled, it became longer and longer.
    5. When it was about 1/4" thick, we put it in the freezer on a cloth to harden. If you slice when it is warm or room temperature, the slice will be lopsided as the knife "drags" on the clay.
    6. We started the next "batch" and rolled several more canes.
    7. After 20 minutes, we took one cane at a time out of the freezer and placed it on the counter.
    8. With a very sharp kitchen knife, we cut little slices from the cane. The tips were put in the "junk" pile and we rolled that into tye dye looking balls.
    9. If you want to use these as beads, at this point poke a needle or small nail into the edge (not the face where you see the swirl) of each slice. I tried this on a few slices with good results.
    10. We placed all of the slices on an aluminum foil covered baking sheet and pre-heated the oven to 230 degrees F. This is the temperature for soft FIMO. Check your container for temperature and heating time.
    11. Baked 30 minutes and took it out to cool. Watch your little ones - the FIMO will be very HOT!  When cool, I slid the pieces onto a plate.

    The girls loved the final result. This activity engaged all of us for several hours. We tried different 3-color combinations, 2-color combinations, and some other shapes like dice and squares.

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