Monday, May 16, 2011

Clay Projects

Here is a little recap of the clay projects I did with my K-3rd students in the last couple of weeks.

Kindergarten- Knee Bowls
I got this idea from one of the other Art teachers in my district.  I showed the students how to make slabs then they formed them over their knees to make bowls.

First Grade- Pinch Pot Turtles
I first saw this idea on Deep Space Sparkle done with 4th grade students.  I wanted an animal project for 1st grade since they spend quite a bit of time covering animals in science and I needed it to be a pretty sturdy project to give it a decent shot at making it home in one piece.  This worked pretty well with my students.  We made pinch pots, attached legs and heads using the Three S's: score, slip, squish.  (THANK YOU to whoever posted about this, I'm sorry I can't remember you!)  We also added a 4th S for "smooth."


  1. I don't know what happened to the rest of this post... I had 2nd and 3rd grade here too!

  2. You can also use this technique for face masks!!

  3. I noticed that one of your students is wearing a name tag. Do you have name tags they must put on when they come to art? I am going to be teaching at 2 elementary schools and one high school this year and I am nervous about remember names. Any suggestions you have will help!

    --Megan, art teacher from Missouri

  4. Actually I think the nametag was because they had a sub that day. Kindergarten students wear nametags the first couple weeks of school. I have almost 800 students so I make a seating chart the first day and we pretty much use it all year bit helps me learn names faster if they are in the same spot and I can just open my seating binder to each class for reference. I also try to pass back artwork mysel at first so I can link face, name, artwork. Good luck!

  5. Hello Ms. Morris! I'm a new art teacher and am just introducing my students to the wonders of clay. I saw your post about knee bowls and was so inspired that I decided to test it out with a group of self-contained kindergartners (just 12 in a class). I'm using air dry clay and acrylic paints (I heard it makes the clay stronger). My question is how do I keep the students from painting over their name on the bottom of their bowl? The sides and bottom sort of blend into each other so it's a bit tricky for the students to know where to stop painting. Any advice would be appreciated! Thank you for sharing your experiences with other art educators. It's much appreciated!!!

    1. I just checked to make sure their names were written deep enough in the clay that even if they painted over it, it was still pretty easy to read. Since acrylic is thicker and more opaque than watercolor, I would experiment a bit... Maybe after forming the bowl over their knees it could be shaped a little more for a flatter bottom.

  6. Thank you so much for your reply! I will try that and I think I'll even circle their names on the bottom so that the kids will know to avoid painting that area. Thanks again!