Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Preschool Clay

Fridays are interminable. I have five different grades with five different media. The preparation and clean up for all of that is exhausting. Yesterday I had kids printing, glazing pottery, working with clay, drawing, and weaving. I remember sitting for only short periods of time, and spending lots of time hunched over the sink, washing. Last night my brain was numb and my back was tired. Most of the rest of the week, my schedule is good, and I am happy with it. Fridays are just tough.

Enough kavetching.

When I last saw my preschoolers they spent their time exploring with clay. I talked a little about clay, but mostly they played. They pinched it, smashed it, rolled it, and built with it. The idea was to get familiar with it a bit. Most kids played abstractly with the clay but there were a couple of representational pieces. When they were done, the clay went back in the clay bag with the promise that in the next class they would make something they could later keep.

Yesterday they made "elbow pots."
To make these, they pressed their elbows in the middle of a big ball of clay. Some little ones had trouble pressing hard enough into the clay, so we had to help them push. They then took texture stamps and pressed them into the clay to create designs.

These were pretty thick, so I might need an extra week to let the pots dry before firing them. After that I will let the kids glaze.

I think that these look better than the pinch pots the kindergarten and first grade make. Pinch pots are the starting points for a lot of other clay pieces though, so I will continue to teach that.

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