20 February 2013

Wednesday Works - Ceramic Fish in 4th grade

Having our school right on the river gives us a very close up view of the wildlife native to our area.   For my ceramic lesson with 4th grade, we decided to make fish.   Kids were able to make actual species or an amalgamation of fish parts to create on of their own. 

 Rolling slabs about 1/4-1/2  inch thick

 Sketching shape then cutting out the fish.

I use only AMACO White Art Clay No. 25 in my classroom.  I get it in moist form so I don't have to worry about mixing and the dust. 

 I nice selection of clay tools helps create fin and scale textures.  

 Plastic, wooden, or wire trimming tools work well.   Some students used pencils or marker caps, even tapping fingernails into the wet clay.

Adding spikes to a blow fish.

And the final step for this one, adding glaze colors of their choice.   Again, I only use AMACO lead-free, low fire glazes.  I feel comfortable sticking with one company to lesson the chances of any materials in the clay bodies or glaze mixes we really wouldn't want to be using in an elementary school. 

I do individual test strips for each bottle so the kids know exactly what the results would be.  My glaze chart has 90 some glaze colors at any one time.

Some students like to layer glaze colors to create new combinations.   This one was layered and then polka-dotted as well. 

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