Plasticine: How to choose the best in 2021
Today we are going to talk about an educational toy that never goes out of style: the modeling clay. Ideal for children in the development phase, the clay stimulates creativity and stimulates motor coordination, learning shapes, colors, numbers and letters.
There are several options for play dough, so we will show you what to take into account before buying the most suitable for children.
First, the most important
- The modeling clay is much more than a simple joke. It stimulates children’s psychomotor development, concentration and creativity.
- Attention is needed at the time of purchase, since not all the dough has the ideal quality and texture to preserve children’s health.
- In this article, we will show you the factors that differentiate one model from another and how to choose the ideal modeling clay.
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The best modeling clay options: Our tips
The ideal plasticine has the right texture and stimulates children’s imagination. Therefore, manufacturers have invested in quality models with creative resources. Thus, below, we will present the best modeling clay options available on the market today.
- The model that comes with educational kit
- Best option with 18 colors
- Great option compatible with several tools
- Ideal for children who are discovering the numbers
Buying modeling clay can seem simple as they all look the same. But there are many differences between the models available and you need to know how to choose the ideal one.
Therefore, we created this Buying Guide with all the information you will need to make the best decision when investing in modeling clay.
What is a modeling clay?
Plasticine is a product made, in general, with plasticine which is a moldable and plastic material.
In various colors, the play dough has been used for many years, mainly in early childhood education. This is because, with it, it is possible not only to entertain and amuse children, but mainly to stimulate development.
With the popularization, nowadays the modeling clay is a constant game homes. And the best part is that it allows creativity to fly high.
With the clay it is possible to create all kinds of shapes, from geometric figures, to animals, people, houses, urban and nature scenery, among many others.
Currently, the options are so varied that it is possible to find kits that already come with the necessary tools to make it easier for the child to shape the dough, in addition to molds to facilitate play.
But, precisely because of the variety available on the market, it is necessary to understand what differentiates one product from another.
After all, because it is a children’s product, the modeling clay needs to be safe for the child’s health. And of course, there needs to be a consistency that doesn’t give the dads and moms trouble at the end of the game.
Later in this article, we will talk in depth about the care you should take when choosing the best modeling clay.
Did you know that the modeling clay appeared in 1880, in Munich, Germany?
It was developed by Franz Kolb, owner of a pharmacy, who decided to help his sculptor friends who complained about the clay used to model sculptures, which dried quickly. But it was only in 1987 that the modeling clay as we know it was improved by the English art teacher William Harbutt.
The importance of modeling clay in early childhood education?
The modeling clay is recommended from 2 years of age. And it is precisely at this stage that curiosity and discoveries begin, especially with the movements of the little hands and fingers.
The modeling clay is a simple and very important resource in early childhood education.
With this game it is possible to develop motor coordination, creativity and concentration.
Not to mention that, due to its composition, the clay encourages the discovery of new shapes, colors, textures and sensations.
The modeling clay is a simple and important resource in early childhood education as it helps to develop motor coordination, creativity and concentration.
When the child is older, the modeling clay still helps in learning numbers and math accounts, in addition to letters and word formation.
In addition, through the modeling dough the child uses his imagination to tell stories and materialize the thoughts that are in his mind. Over and over again, this type of manual work relaxes and reassures.
How to play clay?
Children can explore the clay freely. But it is also possible to insert countless other accessories in the game.
As we have seen, there are ready-made kits that come with some accessories.
But you can enrich the game with popsicle sticks, cupcakes, scissors, cliques among other pieces and toys that you have at home.
Another way to play with clay is also to invite friends so that together they can create adventure scenarios.
You can also propose activities whose modeling has a theme that the child likes and start a story such as, for example, animals and forests, houses and cars, etc.
At the end of the game, experts recommend that you also motivate the child to collect and store the clay, and wash your hands well.
The following are some suggestions to further enhance the play with the modeling clay:
- Encourage the child to create shapes with the clay without the shapes;
- Mix two different colors of clay to create complementary colors;
- Challenge the child to make sculptures out of the dough according to some instructions. Start with simple figures;
- Ask the child to squeeze a little clay in his hands until the dough begins to escape between his fingers. Add the dough and start all over again by working with your hands;
- With plastic scissors, the child will be able to cut pieces of clay and thus train the use of the scissors;
- Instruct your child to roll the dough on the table with the help of a rolling pin. The back and forth movement strengthens the muscles of the hands and forearms;
- Offer buttons, shells, pebbles, bubble wrap, combs and other objects that can create different textures and shapes.
What care should you take with the modeling clay?
It is essential that parents supervise play, especially when the child is very young.
This is because there is always the risk of the child putting the clay in the mouth, nose or ear, which can cause accidents and choking.
Not to mention that, if the child has any type of allergy, extra care is needed. We’ll talk about that in the next section.
Therefore, you need to make sure that the composition material of the modeling clay is completely non-toxic.
You should also pay attention to preservatives and dyes that may be in the composition of the clay.
As children tend to bring their hands and the modeling clay itself to their mouths, the product must be non-toxic.
After playing, instruct the children to wash their hands thoroughly and to keep the dough in a closed pot so that it does not harden.
If the child does some work and does not want to dismantle, the dough can be left to dry and even painted later, turning into a beautiful sculpture.
What is the best modeling clay for celiac children?
If your son or daughter is allergic to gluten (protein present in wheat, barley and rye) it is important that, in addition to being non-toxic, the modeling clay is special.
The big problem is that children usually put the clay or fingers, which may contain remnants of the mass, in the mouth. If this occurs, the child will be eating gluten.
So be careful with the plasticine that is used in daycare centers and schools that, in general, are made of cereal carbohydrate (which can be wheat flour).
Also, be careful with the modeling clay that is very fluffy and soft, as they have gluten.
Our recommendation is that you always give preference to the clay with beeswax, which does not contain gluten.
At school, talk to the teachers to avoid episodes of contamination, as the gluten-free plasticine cannot be kept together with the gluten-free one.
It is also important to ensure that the place where the celiac child plays, eats or does his school activities is not contaminated by the gluten of the common dough.
What are the advantages of modeling clay?
As we have seen, the modeling clay is a product that has numerous advantages. In addition to being a game that distracts and entertains the child, the play dough stimulates the psychomotor development of the little ones from an early age.
In addition, the modeling clay favors children’s concentration and creativity.
When kneading, softening, separating and reassembling the pieces, the little ones pay attention to the sizes and proportions.
And, with the handling of hands and fingers, children develop fine motor coordination, even facilitating the use of pencils and the tracing of letters in the future.
Another advantage of the modeling clay is that the creations can be maintained or transformed into other forms.
But even with all these benefits, the clay can have some disadvantages. Some kits, for example, can be quite expensive.
In addition, not all pasta has the ideal texture and quality. Some may stick to clothing or the floor, for example.
Not to mention that it is necessary to be attentive to acquire only modeling clay that is non-toxic.
The following are the main advantages and disadvantages of clay for children:
How much does modeling clay cost?
The price of the modeling clay can vary a lot depending on the brand, the size and the quantity of pots and / or accessories included.
In general, you will find the clay costing between R $ 6 and R $ 1,000. Of course, you don’t have to buy the most expensive one, which is usually kits with many accessories. Remember that you can improvise with accessories you have at home.
Where to buy clay?
You will find clay for sale in stationery stores, toy stores, department stores.
Still, we recommend that you make your purchase at online stores Amazon.
Thus, you will have more options to choose from, with more attractive prices, in addition to purchasing the clay with practicality, from the comfort of your home.
Purchasing Criteria: What to consider before choosing clay
To be sure that you will invest in the ideal modeling clay you need to know what are the differences between the options for sale on the market.
This way, you will have the guarantee that the plasticine will be of quality to preserve the child’s health, in addition to being functional and practical when finishing the game.
For this reason, we have selected for you the main factors that must be taken into account before purchasing the modeling clay. Are they:
In the following, we will explain each of these factors in detail so that you make the best decision when purchasing the best modeling clay.
The first factor that you should note before buying the clay is the size of the pot or packaging.
This factor will certainly influence the price of the product and the possibilities of raising the child.
With a greater amount of plasticine, the child can spend more time having fun and creating.
In addition, it is not uncommon for the dough to become lost or dry over time. Therefore, having a larger quantity prevents the game from being interrupted.
Nowadays, it is possible to find a wide variety of clay sizes.
You can, for example, choose the version in pots whose size varies between 20 and 150 grams in each one. The price, of course, will be proportional. But there are also options for plasticine shaped like tubes.
In this case, the most common is that the packaging comes with a mass of about 15 grams each.
Another important factor that you should consider before buying the clay is the colors. The fact is that there are a multitude of different colors to choose from.
And, as we have already seen, colors are a fundamental part of the advantages and benefits that the modeling clay promotes in the development of the little ones.
Our recommendation is that the more varied the colors of the dough the better for the child.
But, if you don’t want or can’t buy many different colors, choose at least three colors, especially the primary colors: blue, red and yellow.
From these colors, the child can be stimulated to create secondary colors when mixing with one another.
Then, take into consideration the amount of jars or clay you will acquire.
There are kits with 2 to 15 modeling clay pots.
You can buy the jars individually. But generally, when you buy a set of pots, the cost-benefit ratio is almost always higher.
Therefore, nowadays, there are options of kits that offer from 2 to up to 15 clay pots.
Also in the version of modeling clay in the shape of tubes, the packages can contain between 5 and 20 plasticine.
In addition to the possibility of buying the clay individually or in a set with several colors, you can also choose to invest in a complete kit.
In this case, the kit accompanies, in addition to the clay, accessories to encourage the child to play and create. In general, you will find kits that include between 10 and 30 pieces.
The most basic kits come with shapes of geometric figures, numbers or letters, as well as a roll and scissors.
But the most complete kits also include memory cards, trays and other accessories that stimulate learning.
The only downside of the kits is that, in general, they come with few modeling clay options and in small sizes. In general, two to four jars with only about 20g are included.
Finally, also note the texture of the clay. This is because some brands offer an oily product that sticks to the hand, the floor, the wall and toys.
Also, keep an eye out for the types of modeling clay that tend to crumble and spread throughout the house.
After all, after a fun joke, you don’t want to have a double job cleaning the house and clothes, do you?
The fact is that the best types of modeling clay are extremely moldable and do not stick to the hand.
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