SchoolArts Magazine

DEC 2008

SchoolArts is a national art education magazine committed to promoting excellence, advocacy, and professional support for educators in the visual arts since 1901.

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MiddleSchoolStudioLesson Simple Saucers Mary Coy W ith standardized English Language Arts exams on the horizon, I thought a game of Antonyms would provide not only a quick language arts activity for my sixth graders, but also a nice segue to an art lesson in contrast. We googled the word "antonyms" and played one of many online games asking one to match the given word with its opposite. I then handed out a fake set of guidelines and asked students to figure out the real ones by changing the underlined words in the directions to their antonym. A thin slab of clay was to be thick; a simple design, complex; a square saucer, circular. Other words such as "straight, black, and realistic" were changed to "curvy, white, and abstract." This project, 40 December 2008 SchoolArts and cut a rectangle which was rolled around a cardboard tube to crea simple saucer ate a short clay cylinder. The edges on a pedestal base, were overlapped, scored, slipped, required students to smoothed, and shaped to resemble demonstrate contrast through the slight flair at the bottom of a tree various lines, shapes, patterns, and trunk. This would serve as a base for strong black-and-white values using a our saucer. Since the clay needed to sgraffito technique. firm up, it was stored in a loose plastic bag until the next class. How to Begin After the clay became somewhat First, students rolled out a slab of clay leather hard, it was removed from the approximately ½" thick or slightly bowl and refined. The top and botless. An 8" circle template was placed tom surfaces were smoothed with a on the slab and cut out using a needle slightly damp sponge and the rim was tool. (Circle size cleaned up a bit. can vary.) After I thought a game of Antonyms The underside removing the of the saucer would provide not only a excess clay from and the top of quick language arts activity, the base were around the tembut also a nice segue to an plate, the clay scored, slipped, art lesson in contrast. slab was lifted up and attached and gently draped together, blendon top of a bowl the same size as the ing the connection to neaten the clay circle. (Don't push the clay down appearance. Texture or simple relief into the bowl.) Gently massaging the was added to the base if desired. center of the slab in a circular motion created the concave shape we desired. Preparing for Sgraffito Using the remaining (or extra) Sgraffito is a decorative process clay, students rolled another slab by which cutting or scraping away

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