Saturday, March 22, 2014

Three creative weeks with Clay

I'll soon have so much to post but I've been busy guiding students through the process of becoming potters and haven't had much to say lately.  I was giving this some thought the other day as my Kindergarten students were creating these coil pots.  I thought I would share my method.
I try to create a story with students as they work with clay to hopefully cement methods through association. So here goes:

We begin by rolling a piece of clay into a ball to create a yummy pancake. It is placed into the bottom of an inexpensive plastic bowl from the dollar store.  This will serve as a mold to help them support the sides of their bowl as they create.

Next students learn to roll a "snake" coil with clay.
Here is the story.  A snake discovered a pancake in the bottom of a bowl.  It looked so yummy that the snake crawled into the bowl to have a bite.  We take our thumb and try to stop the snake from eating as we push the coil against the sides of the bowl

making certain to have each clay coil touch the clay below it.  The snake tries to escape and crawl out of the bowl, we pinch, pinch, pinch and we turn to bowl and keep the snake "caught" in the bowl.

Once students reach the top of the bowl the coil pot is finished and left to harden before it is removed from the bowl.

Most students are very successful in attaching the coils.  The bowl will have beautiful Kindergarten thumb prints all around the interior but will maintain the appearance of coils around the outside.
inside view of students work
Student Work: Outside view with bowl upside down
Student Work: Outside view with bowl in correct position

Student Work on Left after glazing
Small Kindergarten Pinch Pot on Right

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