Today, we have a really cool guest post from Stef over at Non Toy Gifts. Stef has shared with us how to make DIY clay maps that are perfect for learning about different countries, and the places that are there.
Travelling with young kids may be challenging but showing them the world can also be done from the comfort of your home: reading books that take place in different countries, playing with wooden landmark toys, creating cardboard monuments, letting them explore applications like Google Earth on their own, looking at the map – these are just a few ideas.
Making DIY clay maps is another fun way to nourish kids’ love for geography.
They are easy to create and require materials that you already have in your household. Kids can choose any state or country that they have recently been to or dream of visiting, seen on TV or read about.
WHAT YOU NEED TO MAKE DIY CLAY MAPS:
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- –map of the state / country of your choice
- –tracing paper
- -aluminum baking pan
- -needle or pin
- -bamboo skewer or toothpick
- –permanent marker
- –craft paint
- -1/2 cup salt
- -2 cups flour
- -1 cup water
- -1 tablespoon cooking oil
- -Optional: mini landmark toys
HOW TO MAKE DIY CLAY MAPS:
Step 1. Print the map and copy it on the tracing paper.
Step 2. Mix the salt, flour and oil in a bowl. Add enough water to reach a claylike consistency.
Step 3. Transfer the clay to the aluminum baking pan and press it down to a 3/4 inches thickness. Smooth the surface with your hand.
Step 4. Place the tracing paper on the clay and punch the outline with a needle or a pin – this will create a very thin border.
Remove the paper and use a bamboo skewer or a toothpick to press harder on the outline of your map
Step 5. Preheat oven at 250F and place the baking pan in the oven for 2 hours.
Step 6. Remove the pan from the oven and let it cool down. When the map is cool, use a market to draw the outline of the map and mark the major cities or island names. Paint the background in the color of your choice.
While my toddler thinks these three are cookies and tries to take a bite whenever he manages to get his hands on them, my preschooler really enjoys playing with the clay maps.
I created France, Italy and Germany so far and I also got a few small landmarks to use in a match game.
And this is Germany:
HAVE FUN DISCOVERING THE WORLD WITH THESE DIY CLAY MAPS!
About the author:
Stef, a mom of two little boys, blogs at Non Toy Gifts about toy alternative gifts for young kids, from DIY to practical gifts. She shares ideas that will create beautiful childhood memories through experiences, adventures, fun learning and so much more.You can connect with her on Facebook, Twitter and Google +.