Are you familiar with the work of Barbara Reid?  She is a children’s book artist who works with plasticine, creating impressive detail (she has some videos that are quite informative for learning various techniques:  Who doesn’t remember the feel of plasticine- it is almost meditative, moving and constructing with this childhood favourite supply!  


Mother's Day:  Plasticine Portraits

  • Plasticine
  • Clay tools (I preferred the wood ones when I was a teacher for more durability, but plastic ones can work too.  Otherwise use what you have- a fork, a butter knife, scissors etc.)
  • Small wooden boxes (These were from the craft store) OR the bottom of card boxes/ a shallow, sturdy box

Optional (For hanging)

  • Ribbon/ cord
  • Glue gun

We always find these items helpful too: (Crafts & activities for kids)

  • Smock
  • Craft tray


  • Don your smock.  Create the background for your portrait.  We used these little wooden boxes left over from another project, but you could use any shallow box, like the bottom of a package of greeting cards.

Mother's Day:  Plasticine Portraits

  • Add your mother, remembering to include lots of details, exploring your tools!  (My students always liked scissors so be sure to give those a try!)

Mother's Day:  Plasticine Portraits

Mother's Day:  Plasticine Portraits

Mother's Day:  Plasticine Portraits

Mother's Day:  Plasticine Portraits

Mother's Day:  Plasticine Portraits

  • If you like, glue on a bit of cord to hang your portrait on the top corners or simply stand it up on display- ours are on top of our piano!

Mother's Day:  Plasticine Portraits.  This would be a lovely, personalized gift for mom that can either be made at home or in school.


  • Developing one’s fine motor skills, manipulating materials and using a variety of tools.

Safety Notes

  • We suggest that you wear a smock and use a craft tray to protect your clothing and surfaces.
  • Use scissors and/or a glue gun with care and adult supervision.
  • Cord, yarn etc. can be a strangulation hazard, therefore be sure to use with direct supervision and for its intended purpose.
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