15 Fun and Creative Clay Craft Ideas for Kids

15 Creative Clay Craft Ideas for Kids

Clay craft is one of the most fun and exciting ways to encourage your child’s imagination and creativity. Sure, kids love the vibrant colours, and the doughy texture of modelling clay or play dough will ensure your little one gets hands-on with the clay to get their motor and cognitive skills running. Playing with clay improves children’s fine motor skills as they use their hands to mould different shapes. Modelling clay playing is also very therapeutic, unlike children browsing smartphones for hours where the stimulation is too much. There are plenty of clay ideas for kids, including making fun clay animals and foods.

Types of Modeling Clay

There are various types of modelling clay available in the market nowadays. Here are some common types suitable for children:

1. Traditional Oil-Based Clay

Traditional oil-based clay works fine as it does not get hardened easily. It is reusable and cost-friendly, making it ideal for younger children or beginners.

2. Polymer Clay

Polymer clay is a synthetic material for modelling that hardens when baked in an oven at low temperatures. It comes in a wide range of colours, making it versatile for various projects.

3. Air-Dry Clay

Air-dry clay is a type that dries naturally when exposed to air over time, usually within 24-48 hours, depending on its thickness. It’s non-toxic and doesn’t require baking or firing in a kiln, making it convenient and suitable for home use.

4. Modelling Dough

Modelling dough is one the most common types of clay among kids for play. It is similar to traditional modelling clay, just softer and more pliable. Modelling dough is non-toxic and comes in a variety of colours, making it perfect for children’s playtime.

Fun Clay Craft Ideas for Children

If you are wondering how to keep your children busy during vacations, clay craft is the answer! With a little guidance from you, children can make fascinating artwork out of modelling clay. Here is a list of creative clay craft ideas for children:

1. Clay Caterpillar

This is one of the many creative clay activities for pre-schoolers. Children will enjoy making a caterpillar with clay. The little round shapes that form the body of the caterpillar are easy to make and surely a simple task for a pre-schooler.

Clay caterpillar

How to make?

Cut out a leaf shape from white paper. Ask your child to colour the leaf with crayons. Cut out the leaf shape and keep it aside. Next, take green and brown play dough. Show your child how to make tiny round balls of green and brown clay. Ask them to stick these balls together following an alternate colour pattern. Use black clay to make eyes on the first ball to give the caterpillar a face. Use a black thread or black clay to make a smiley-mouth shape below the eyes. To make antennae, put two small sticks on the head of the caterpillar with a little red clay round covering the tip of each stick. Place the clay caterpillar on the paper leaf you made earlier to make it seem like it is crawling on the leaf. You can also make a caterpillar with a dough of the same colour.

2. Clay Cone Ice-creams

 This is a wonderful clay modelling idea for kindergarteners. They can make cone ice-creams with clay.

How to make 

Collect some used cardboard toilet rolls. Cut them open and roll them from one corner to make a cone shape. Staple or glue the open side to make sure the cone stays in shape. Now, take different colours of play dough and make shapes on top of the cone to look like scoops of different-flavoured ice-creams. Put small dots of various colours on top to denote sprinkles. Once the cone ice-creams are ready, the children can take turns playing the ice-cream seller and buyers.

3. Cookie Cutter Shapes

This is a very entertaining clay modelling idea for kids. You can buy the type of clay or play dough that hardens after 24 hours of air-drying if the kids want to preserve the clay cookies that they make.

Cookie Cutter Shapes

How to make?

Give your child plastic cookie cutters of various shapes, such as animals, hearts, stars, crescents, etc. Use a rolling pin to flatten the play dough. Ask your child to cut out shapes from it with the cookie cutter. You could air-dry the shapes and preserve them so that your child can play with them later.

4. Seashell and Pasta Impressions

This is another interesting clay craft activity for young children. They will be delighted to see the different impressions that can be made on clay using seashells and pasta shapes.

How to make?

Ask your child to use a rolling pin to flatten the clay. Next, give her a bunch of seashells and pasta shapes. Ask her to press them into the flattened play dough and then remove them. Now, let the child examine the shape that she has created using the seashell or pasta shapes. You can also use plastic animals or doll shoes to create tiny footprints.

5. Fruit Basket

This is one of the many imaginative clay activities for 5-year-oldsWith some help from you, they can create a basket of tiny clay fruits that looks very realistic and colourful.

Clay basket

How to make 

 Ask your child to make a little basket out of brown play dough. Next, use red, purple, yellow and green play dough and help your child make tiny fruits like apple, a bunch of grapes, a banana, a pineapple and a melon. Use a stick to make markings on the pineapple to make it look more realistic. You may need to assist your child so that she gets the shapes of the fruit right.

6. Mosaic Art

This is an innovative art project for children who are in kindergarten or older. The use of bits of old, dried play dough will teach children about recycling or reusing waste materials to create something beautiful.

How to make?

Collect different coloured bits of old, dried play dough for this one. Use an A4 size white paper of cardboard and ask your child to draw a garden scene with grass, trees, flowers, and the Sun. Next, use a brush to paint glue inside the outlines. Ask your child to glue the bits of dried play dough into these outlines to create a colourful mosaic. Frame this and display it on a wall.

7. Celestial Puppets

This is a fun activity for children. Using ice-cream sticks to make clay puppets of the Sun, a star or a rainbow can keep your child engaged for hours.

Sun made with clay

How to make?

You will need a few craft sticks or ice-cream sticks, play dough of different colours, and craft eyes. To make a sun, roll a large yellow ball of clay and press a craft stick into it. Flatten another piece of yellow clay and cut long triangles to make the rays of the Sun. Attach these to the yellow ball to make it look like the sun. Next, press the rounded edge of the craft stick into the yellow ball to make an impression of a smiling mouth. Stick craft eyes above the mouth to give the puppet a face. To make a star puppet, flatten a blob of blue clay and cut out two identical star shapes using a star-shaped cookie cutter. Sandwich the ice cream stick between the two stars and make a face on the star by adding eyes and a mouth. Make a rainbow puppet by rolling snake shapes of the seven colours of the rainbow; arrange them to form a bow shape. Press the craft stick to the underside of the rainbow. Add eyes and a mouth.

8. Leaf Impressions

You can use clay that hardens after air-drying or the type of clay that can be hardened by baking. You can find these in any art and craft store.

How to make?

 First, ask your child to collect big leaves of different shapes from a garden. Help your child clean the leaves. Next, ask your child to flatten the clay using a rolling pin. Flatten 2-3 rolls of clay. Now, let her make imprints of each leaf on different pieces of clay. Cut off the extra clay from the sides of the leaf shape and let the clay air dry. Once the leaf shapes are dry, ask your child to paint the clay with acrylic paint. Let the paint dry. You can display this art in your child’s room.

9. Clay Snail

Making colourful animal shapes from clay is fun for kids. Apart from a snail, you can also help your child make other animal shapes like a butterfly, an elephant, a turkey, a mouse or a turtle.

Clay snail

How to make?

To make a snail, use a sea shell or conch-shaped pasta as the shell and let your child paint it colourfully. To make the snail’s body, roll out snake-shaped clay and attach the pasta-shape or sea-shell to the middle of the body. You can add craft eyes and antennae to the face of the snail.

10. Fridge Magnets

 Use air-drying clay and a self-stick magnet for this one to make colourful fridge magnets.

How to make?

Ask your child to mix different-coloured blobs of clay. Flatten this with a rolling pin and use cookie cutters to cut out different shapes like a heart, a fish, a star or a crescent. Let it air-dry and harden. Next, stick a magnet to the back of the shape and use the fridge magnet to decorate your refrigerator.

11. Star Ornaments

Clay star ornaments making is going to be a memorable clay art for kids this Christmas!

How to make?

Blend two distinct hues of clay to form a sphere. Flatten the ball and assist them in shaping it into a star using a cookie cutter. Afterwards, follow the baking instructions for the clay and once cooled, hang the star-shaped clay ornaments on the Christmas tree. This hands-on activity not only fosters creativity but also adds a personal touch to your holiday decorations.

12. Clay Laddoos

For an impressive impression of your little one’s creativity, clay laddoos are one of the most ideal clay crafts for kids.

How to make?

Make balls of coloured clay to make laddoos. You can choose the yellow colour for making the laddoos. For the bowl of the laddoos, make a big ball of coloured clay and make a hollow in the centre to mould it into a ball. Voila! Your clay laddoos are ready!

13. Clay Snake

Want to make something scary? Among clay activities for kids, we believe the clay snake is the easiest yet scariest clay model.

How to make?

Roll a single coloured clay in your and give it a noodle-like shape. However, it should be thick to resemble a snake. Using white or yellow colour clay, make the eyes, and using red or orange coloured clay, make the tongue. Your clay snake is ready!

14. Rainbow

Rainbow clay making is our personal favourite!

How to make?

Take different coloured clays and make long stripes out of them. Try to take the colours of the rainbow to make noodle-like stripes. Arrange all the coloured noodle stripes in a semi-circular shape. Now, using white coloured clay, make the clouds and place them at the end of the rainbow stripes.

15. Ladybug

Encourage your little one’s interest in nature and its wonderful beings while clay modelling. and start with a ladybug!

How to make?

Take red or orange-coloured clay and make an oval shape to make the ladybug’s body. Now, using black-coloured clay, make a small round ball to make its head. Now, make even smaller balls using black-coloured clay to make the polka dots of the ladybug’s body.


1. What types of clays are suitable for kids’ crafts?

Polymer, air-dry, and traditional modelling clays are suitable for clay projects for kids..

2. How can clay crafting benefit a child’s development?

Engaging in clay modelling will ensure the child shapes the clay using their hands, specifically fingers and palms, to create various forms. Encouraging children to participate in clay modelling can enhance both their fine and gross motor skills. Additionally, it can develop cognitive capacities like creativity and problem-solving. Most importantly, clay modelling provides a means for children to articulate their thoughts and emotions through artistic expression.

Clay craft is an enjoyable activity for children of all ages. Try these clay craft ideas with your children to help them explore their creative side.

Also Read:

Jellyfish Crafts for Kids
Origami Crafts for Children
Easy Paper Craft Ideas for Kids
Construction Paper Crafts for Children

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