Recently I read this article : http://www.culturalindia.net/indian-crafts/clay-toys.html and felt that we should introduce this to children now. Rather than play-doh, we can use clay that is safe and helps children connect to nature.
Having children play in sand, safe rivers or streams, in the rain open up their senses to nature and the wonders of nature.
Children can be encouraged to use pebbles, twigs, soil to play.
Using natural materials and playing outdoors definitely contribute to a child’s physical and emotional well being.-journal jotting
There’s a separate post on why spend time outdoors, as adults and as children.