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Third graders learned different ways of transforming a pinch pot into a container. After experimenting with plasticine, students created an animal container using clay. After the sculptures were fired, students painted them with tempera paint.

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Before giving students “real clay,” I like to have them practice pinching, rolling and pressing using modeling clay. Kindergarteners came up with a lot of great ways to build and made animals, plants, bridges, and many other sculptures. W in KN came up with this delicious idea!

The fourth graders have finished creating their clay spoons, so we took a little time during class today to reflect on the process:

1. Explain what a symbol is in your own words.

S: Something that represents someone or something.

L: Something that represents your favorite hobby.

2. What symbols did you include on your spoon?

F: A basketball, a football, and a monkey

Sh: A neuron, a fish, a bowl of rice, and a book

B: A snowman, a smiling face (to represent that I like comedy), an ambered colored book (to represent my favorite history book)

T (4S): Lollipop, paintball pellet, ipad

B (4S): I included a lego brick, a marker, scientific beaker, a piece of quantum foam

G(4S): I have a cupcake, an Iviva shopping bag, a music note, and a soccer ball.

H (4S): Belgian flag, a tiger, a basketball, a soccer ball, and skis.

A (4S): A music note, a Hersey’s Kiss, a turtle, and theatre masks.

D (4Ge): A paintbrush and an art palette, an ice skate, a tiger, and an ice cream cone.

T (4Ge): A watercolor case and brush, a cupcake, and a math equation.

A (4Ge): A soccer ball, a dog’s paw print, and a sun.

3. What is one thing you learned about the clay process?

N: There are lots of steps. One of them is shaping the clay.

K: I learned that when you want to make a bowl or something round, you can make a pinch pot first.

M: You have to be patient and let the clay dry before you glaze it.

D (4S): Clay is messy.

S (4S): When you don’t want your clay to dry, put it in a plastic bag.

G (4S): You need to smooth the clay, so that when you paint it it looks nice.

4. What is one thing you learned about glazing?

Na: If you want the glaze to be dark (without white spots), use three layers of glaze.

E: Most of the time the colors look different after they come out of the kiln (because the glaze melts).

T (4S): The chemicals get heated by the kiln and change.

A (4Ge): You don’t put glaze on the bottom of the spoon. Because otherwise it will stick when you put it in the kiln.

5. Imagine your friend wants to make a clay spoon. What tips/advice would you give him/her?

J: Don’t be surprise if your glaze looks different because after it goes in the kiln it might change colors.

V: Paint three layers (or more) of glaze so the colors show up better.

A: Look at the samples to match the glaze colors you want.

G (4S): Smooth your clay so you don’t see any cracks.

D (4S): Don’t glaze the bottom of your spoon, otherwise it will get stuck to the kiln.

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The seventh grader’s mugs have been glazed and are finished! Students had to transform their mug somehow and I love the variety of objects students chose and the ways that they created their handles, attached details, and layered glazes.