Why These Recipes

Several activities that children do can improve their dexterity and among one of those activities is playing with dough and finger painting.

Salt Dough that requires Baking


salt dough ornament

1/3 cup salt
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 to 1 1/2 cups lukewarm water


Mix the flour and salt together. Slowly add the lukewarm water until you have a soft dough. Knead for 5 minutes until it is smooth. Cover any unused dough in plastic wrap to keep it soft.

Shape your models.

To join pieces use a tiny bit of water as 'glue.' Apply the water sparingly with a paint brush. Use straws or knitting needles to make holes. Paper clips make nice hanging hooks.

Baking your Models

Dough models should be baked before painting or decorating them. Place them on a cookie sheet in the bottom of the oven at 275 degrees F. After 30 minutes, increase to 325 degrees F until the model is golden brown -- the time will depend on your model. Should air bubbles appear while baking, carefully press them down with a blunt knife and then continue baking.

Cool the models before decorating them. Painted models should receive a coat of white latex paint to give a nice even undercoating for decorating. Craft paints will work fine (they are latex). !!Important: Store ornaments in sealed plastic bags. Being stored in a humid area unprotected will caused them to become soft and possibly fall apart.


Play Dough

2 cups flour
2 teaspoons cream of tarter
1/2 cup salt
2 Tablespoons oil
2 cups water
food coloring

Combine the ingredients in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium high heat, reduce heat to simmer. Stir the simmering liquid until it thickens into a stiff blob.


Finger Paint

1/2 cup cornstarch
3 Tablespoons sugar
2 cups cold water
food coloring

Place the cornstarch, sugar, and water in a saucepan. Whisk to combine ingredients. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to simmer. Stir and simmer until thickened to desired consistency. Divide the paint into 4 small jars. Add food coloring to each jar, stir until blended.

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