Monday, January 14, 2013

Pinch Pots and Clay Slab Fish

Hi Friends! Its been a while since my last post. Its been a busy time creating and taking photos, but I haven't had a chance to really get some blog posts in. 

Here are a couple of projects we've done so far....

First graders worked on clay pinch pots recently.  We built them, let them dry and glazed them.  Usually I like to do a bisque fire first before glazing, but I decided to cut that step and just go straight to a glaze fire in the kiln.  A Bisque fire is the first firing of green ware (clay that has been air dried) that completes the initial drying process and the clay changes from gray to white. 

What I did with the first graders is let their pinch pots air dry to green ware.  I then had them glaze the pinch pots and  I immediately glaze fired them.  This saved me a lot of time and energy.  A bisque fire takes a lot longer than a glaze fire so it definitely saved me some time as I have a plethora of clay projects to bisque fire and glaze. 

Here are some pinch pot examples:


Pinch pots.  Green Ware (unfired clay)

Glaze fired Pinch Pot


Glaze fired Pinch Pot

Glaze fired Pinch Pot


Third Graders worked on slab fish.  A slab is a flat piece of clay.  We started by rolling our clay piece into a ball.  We then flattened the ball to resemble a pancake.  Then we scored (made scratch marks) and slipped (added water) the clay to fold it together like a taco.  Then we added details.  We shaped the back end into a tail and kept the mouth open.  Some students opted to add teeth or a tongue. We pinched the top together to resemble dorsal fins.  We smoothed out any bumps and visible scratches by dipping our fingers in water and smoothing it onto the clay.  Below are some examples of the fish:




Profile view Mrs. Erb's example

Student work in kiln, unfired and unglazed



Tail view Mrs. Erb's example

Front view, Mrs Erb's example




3/4 view, Mrs. Erb's example


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