On a rainy day, Jack and I crafted some of these salt clay creatures. He just loves them. You make the clay and bake it in the oven until totally dry, then cover with paint. We did these a few weeks ago and they are holding up very well, minus one little snake that broke in half. The recipe for the salt clay is below, we used acrylic paint on them (nontoxic, of course.)
3/4 cup salt
2 cups flour
3/4 cup water
To make: Mix the dry ingredients together. Then add the water gradually. When the dough forms a ball, knead it well, adding more water if it's too crumbly. Shape it into snakes, roll it out and cut it with cookie cutters, the sky's the limit here. Just make sure no pieces are too thick, as they may not dry thoroughly in the oven. Bake them on a cookie sheet (ungreased) in a 300 degree oven for 30-40 minutes or until they are dry and the bottoms get a little brown. Wait for them to cool, then paint!