SchoolArts Magazine

May-June 2015

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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20 SchoolArts Middle School Studio Lesson A ll I have to do is mention the word "clay" in class and I have the undivided attention of every student. It has, however, been my experience that clay can be a nightmare if not approached properly. Giving students small amounts of information and then allowing them time each day for creative "play" is my answer for achieving success. Additionally, I try to develop what I call, "keeper projects." These are projects that chal- lenge, teach, and are successful for everyone. I have turned my introduction to clay into a three-day event. At the end of three days, students will have ade - quate clay knowledge and clay samplers that they can have fired if they wish. Day 1: Slabs and Impressions The first day starts with some history and a demonstration. All students get a piece of clay that, when rolled out, will become about a 6 x 6" (15 x 15 cm) slab. They learn how to wedge, flatten by hand, and use leveling sticks and a rolling pin to create a clay slab. Next, they learn ways to make impressions in clay using stamp letters and small rolling pins or brayers. Finally, they learn how to wrap and store their clay. Dianne Blickle Clay WEAVING

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