Let's just talk a bit about clay. Clay and I haven't gotten along in the last few years. Growing up, I loved working with clay and my art projects always turned out great. However, college made me scared of it.
I took Ceramics I and everything changed. The expectations of a college-level project are much higher than elementary (go figure), and even high school. I'd never used a pottery wheel before, so that was my biggest challenge. I remember coming out of the studio furious and covered in clay from head to toe. People, I had clay in my armpits! Needless to say, I think I made a C in the class but I was happy to have it over with and didn't care. I thought I'd never have to deal with clay again.
Here we are, 3 years later, and I see clay on an everyday basis. I could probably write a novel about all the things I've learned about how to teach clay, organize clay, cut clay, fire clay, etc.... but today I will focus on the organizational part. I will do a series on the others if anyone is interested!
Ok, on to some pictures because my rambling is getting old...
|Room setup is key!! Having a center table for clay demos and supplies has really helped. I have students stand around the table (with hands in pockets or behind backs) to watch demonstrations.|
|This is a closer view of the center table. No, it's not pretty but it does the job. Under the table are tools, place mats, aprons, etc.|
|Plastic bags are your friend. Just make sure they don't have holes in them. I only see students once a week, so we have to store them in bags to keep the moisture inside.|
|Close-up of aprons. White ones are smaller, black ones are larger. Have them easily accessible!|
|Clay tools in an old jar. Nothing fancy, but students can easily get to them and see what's available. This class did not do a good cleaning job. :)|
|Shelves... I am constantly rearranging them but they are so helpful for drying purposes, holding green ware or glazed pieces that are ready for firing, etc.|
|Cookie sheets! I use them ALL the time. They can hold quite a few pieces, and they are pretty sturdy. Also, the clay won't stick to them as it dries.|
|I also use a lot of copy paper box lids. You can use them to store glaze, fired pieces, or just for transporting from the kiln room to the classroom. A cart also comes in handy for that!|
|Another box lid used to hold kiln props. I usually have them more neatly organized by size, but this week was crazy.|
|More kiln prop organization|
|Slip bowl covered with foil. I've been using the same slip bowls for 4 months... just add water when you need to!|
By the way, does anyone else have trouble lining up and spacing pictures on this thing? Wow, it's annoying.
Have a terrific Thursday.:)