Tic Tac Toe…All in a Row – Make a Game out of Clay

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  • Things you probably have at home:
    • Rolling pin
    • Plastic knife
    • Paper
    • Pen
    • Foil

Most items you already have at home!

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Ideal Age Range:

5+ will be able to make most of this with a little help. This can be adapted for younger children, who can participate in making the indentations + tic tac toe balls but may need help with the board.

Mess Factor:

Not that messy. Use a table cover and that will easily wipe any clay residue away.

Prep Time:

5 – 10 minutes to gather supplies and create the template.


Finished Tic Tac Toe board

This is a great project because not only will you give the kids something to do while making it, but then they can play Tic Tac Toe to their heart’s content!

To follow the directions as they are below, use 2 packets (2oz) of white or beige clay and select two additional colors and use 1 packet (2oz) of each of those colors. If you prefer, you can use white and beige clay for the entire project and then paint the baked surface with gloss acrylic paints.

This project was originally created for my special needs art class. If you need help adapting the project for your child, please reach out in the comments below!

Active Instructions:

  1. Cut a 4″ square out of your piece of paper. Using pen, draw the tic tac toe board grid onto the paper.
    • You need to use pen for this step so that the lines will transfer onto the clay later.
  2. Unwrap the 2 white or beige packets and work with your hands until they soften (Sculpey Clay products vary in hardness so some clays may need more work than others – really good for building up hand muscles)
    • Smaller hands will find it easier to work on smaller sections of the clay
  3. Roll the softened clay into a ball shape – does not have to be perfect!
  4. Pat the ball between both hands to flatten (like making a hamburger patty!)
    • Smaller hands may find it easier to place on a flat surface and pound with their hands and fist to flatten!
Step 2 + 3 – soften the clay and roll into a ball

Step 3 – flatten the clay

  1. Place flattened clay on the tin foil and begin to roll the clay with the rolling pin to enlarge the size big enough for the 4” template (just make it large enough for the template – you don’t want it too thin!)
  2. Place your template with the pen lines face up and cut to the square shape using your cutting utensil (does not have to be a perfect square!)
Step 5 – roll your clay large enough to fit the 4″ template

Step 6 – cut the clay to fit the template

  1. Turn the template over so that the drawn pen lines are against the clay surface and gently rub with fingertips – pen lines will rub onto the clay surface.
  2. Take a small piece of one of the colored clay packets and roll into a long thin snake/coil.
    • If you prefer to paint the project, these coils will be the same color clay as your board.
step 7 – when you rub the template onto the clay, pen lines will transfer and become a guide

Step 8 – use 1 of the clay colors + roll into a coil to form the board lines

  1. Use the thin coil of clay to place over the inked lines on the tic tac toe clay board  – pinch or cut to proper length
  2.  Repeat step #7, rolling coils, until you have all of your lines on the game board. GENTLY push the lines into the board so that the clay is sticking to the board surface.
Step 9 – place coils along the lines of the template

Step 10 – continue rolling until you create all lines

  1. Using your middle or index finger push into each squared off section of your TIC TAC TOE board creating rounded indents on the clay surface
    • If you have a small cup, you can use the bottom to indent each square. This doesn’t need to be perfect, so use what you have.
Step 11 – create indents in each section
  1. Creating the TIC TAC TOE game balls: using a small piece of the colored clay roll into a small ball that will fit into the indents you made on the game board. (The rest of the color you used for the coils and another color.)
    • Make 8 balls from the 2 different colors of Sculpey clay so that you have 2 sets of 8 game pieces for two players (16 game balls total).
    • If you prefer painting, all of the game balls will be made in white or beige and can be painted later.
  2. Place all items on the tin foil on a flat baking sheet and bake at the temperature recommended on your Sculpey Clay package – make sure all items are separated when baking or they will stick together
    • (IMPORTANT TIP: IF USING A TOASTER OVEN SET THE TEMP A BIT LOWER THAN SUGGESTED ON YOUR PACKAGE!)
Step 12 – make the balls for your game

Step 13 – separate all items on a baking sheet to finish

  1. Optional: Baked items can be sprayed with a gloss polyurethane spray to create a nice shiny surface.
    • Wait until everything has cooled before spraying. (If you are painting, now is the time to do that. Wait until everything is completely dry before spraying.)
    • Spraying is an adult job – and should be done outside!

Now you are ready to play!

You will have clay left over from the 2 ounce packages – no worries – it lasts forever – just wrap and put aside for another Sculpey Clay project I will show you in the future!


If you want to pin this project, please use the image below.

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