Today the students got to create the people, creatures, or animals that use their playgrounds out of clay. The students were very excited about working with clay because they had worked with it before and really enjoyed it. Most students were familiar with slip and score but we did a demonstration for the rest of class along with coiling and extruding. The extruder was a new tool that the kids loved. As soon as we demonstrated the tool the kids all raised their hands to tell us different ways they could use it. One student wanted to create spikes out of it, most of them wanted to use it for hair, and one student wanted to use it as quills on his hedgehog.
The clip below shows one students plan for building the people that will use his playground. We wanted the students to draw the characters that they were going to make out of clay to continue our theme of planning 3-D objects with 2-D materials. The student below shows how well he picked up on that plan.
Through his planning he learned that he needed to create several different pieces and then attach them using slip and score.
One of the students was having difficulty grasping the idea that the playgrounds needed to be safe for anyone to use. He created a playground that was quite dangerous to use, with all sorts of spikes and deathly traps. We talked to him a bit about his project, asking him if he would want to play on it and if it as safe for students. He then told us he didn’t realize that people were actually going to play on the playground and he decided to make a different project that was safer. Below is a clip of him talking about his new project and why he switched.
He learned that making violent things is not acceptable in the classroom and that he needs to keep everything safe.
The student below was using the pinching technique to create her characters. She learned that she needed to keep her characters small and not use wire in them so we could fire them in the kiln. She was confident that her characters were small enough that they could survive the kiln.