Elementary Art Lessons Preparation
Measure and put the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Let children take turns sifting and rubbing these ingredients with their fingers to combine.
Measure and add the 2/3 cup water to the dry mix all at once. Mix with a wooden spoon, and invite children to take turns stirring the dough. The dough becomes easier to handle as the dry ingredients absorb the water. If dough will not stick together, sprinkle some additional water over the top to moisten. (Humidity and geographic altitude affect the water to flour proportion, so adjust the recipe as needed for best results.)
Scrape the dough onto a piece of waxed paper which has been sprinkled with flour. Form a dough ball and knead gently, then demonstrate to the children how to knead – press down with heels of hands, fold the dough over on itself, and press down with hands. Let each child measure out two tablespoons of dough and let them practice kneading the dough.
Encourage them to pat and flatten the dough. Using moon and star-shaped cookie cutters, the kids make salt dough shapes. If the dough dries out and is hard to work with, advise the children to dip their fingers into a little water, and then sprinkle it on the dough.
Plastic knives help lift the shapes if the dough sticks to the waxed paper. Use a plastic straw to poke a hole in the top of the shapes – this is used to hold a piece of string so the shapes can be hung up. Show the children how to use a pencil to trace their initials on the back of the salt dough shape.
Place the salt dough cut-outs on baking sheets and place in an oven preheated to 200 degrees. Bake the salt dough for three hours. Baking salt dough makes it stronger, and the shapes last longer and do not become moldy.