Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Clay Masks with the 3rd Graders


Day One: “If you could be an animal, what animal would you be and why?”

We dove into some discussions about identity and transformation…and a lot of kids wanted to share what they wrote, which was refreshing.




Day Two: Creating the Mask using a “thrown slab technique”…score and slip….textures.


Day Three:  Glaze…I like to glaze before the bisque fire on Cone 04…always great results…and environmentally friendly. The only downside to this process is the super fragile clay factor. The kids have to be so careful…but I think that adds to the excitement of the glazing process. Even my 1st graders can handle being super careful and returning their piece glazed and ready to fire.


IMG_2968IMG_2969IMG_2970IMG_2971IMG_3090 <-----Sneak peek at a class of fired masks…! Looking good….

How do I do glazes?

I store powder mix glazes in little cups with lids. They get dry each year…but simply adding hot water and letting them ‘stew’ for awhile wakes them back up. I always add water to all my glazes…especially when they haven’t been used for months.

I use little flimsy plastic trays…and the benefit to that is I can pop the dried glazes out and crush them up and re-wet them each year. So, technically no glaze is ever wasted. Yay!

IMG_3076IMG_3078IMG_3094IMG_3079IMG_3080This is our kiln. I’ve had great luck with it. (knock on wood)


Glazed Masks!



Today was the last day of glazing for a while, so before I let the glaze hibernate, I wanted to paint some projects I’ve used as examples but realized weren’t fired…which is so silly that I don’t have fired examples of the project. No time like the present!

My Before and After Teacher Examples….sometimes you just need to sit down at the end of the day and make something for yourself.



More 3rd Grade Masks….





And more glazing that I was doing to unfinished projects…


Here’s the 4th grade Slab Vessel project…


And the 1st grade Clay-lien Pinch Pot…