Friday, April 12, 2013

2nd Grade Clay Dinosaurs

Spring is clay time at Thomas Elementary. I like to have several ceramic projects in the spring art show and I don't have anywhere to store hundreds of dinosaurs, bugs, castles, and coil pots. (I really do come off like a male teacher when I look at those topics!) 

I haven't done this project in a couple of years because of having student teachers so I was happy to get back to it. First grade always does a pinch pot based project, so this lesson adds new ceramic skills. The main artistic point of this project is the idea of scoring clay to attach two pieces together. At this point, you may be asking yourself, "Self, why isn't he having those nice children use slip?" To that I'd say, "Slip is totally unnecessary in an elementary classroom." I like to try to minimize potential reasons for unnecessary mess and time consumption. As long as the parts are scored correctly, all they need is a drop or two of water and a little smoothing around the edges to attach. 

The backgrounds are just a bonus on this project. I'm probably a little too careful with firing my clay pieces. I like to give them at least a week to dry out, so I always have a little mini lesson in between finishing the clay and painting or glazing. For this lesson, I had kids make a couple of background elements. I just choose a dozen or so from each class to attach to the "mountains" that I made out of craft paper and laminated for later use. 

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