“Is it a bag of snakes?”

By this point in the year, all children in Pre-K have had an experience working with clay!  It is one of my favorite materials to work with and I always love introducing it to children.  We began by examining clay in a plastic bag… friends feel it, poke it and attempt to lift it, among other things.  There’s always a sense of mystery around it, and we brainstorm what we think is in the bag.

Moses: I think it’s mud.  It’s smooth.  I like how it feels.

Roman: It feels really, really, really, REALLY good!

Justin: Is it a big rock?  Can you tell us already?  I can’t wait!

Phoenix: A brick?

Alexia: I think it’s gak.

Michael: Is it a bag of snakes?

Marley: It stinks!

Once friends learned that it was clay (and not a bag of snakes, phew) they began to work on their clay sculptures!  We had some different tools available… rollers for making it flat, clay scissors for cutting, utensils for mark making, etc.

Sylvie: I’m just making bird soup.  They can eat it outside.  I might even eat it for my dinner because birds said it was yummy.

Cole: I need something to add to my house.  It needs a roof so that my little fella doesn’t get lost.  These are the shades… if little fella is in the sun it keeps him cool and shady.  He has a secret hideaway spot but he’s bigger then that.  He zaps and this little hanging thing gets her into his home.  He hides from the bad guy.  The little fella roof is there just for the little fella to get out of in an emergency.  It’s hard to build a house.

Paris: A bear cave and a bear.  He sleeps in there in the winter.

Wallace: Clay can do so many cool things.

Elias: Did you know that clay is made from a cow?  Oh, that’s not clay… that’s actually milk.

Maceo: A choo choo train through the tunnel.  This is the track… a big track for trains.

Minna: I’m making Ms.Cushner a birthday cake!  This is her party and she just turned 5.  Blow out the candles!

Owen: My battleship is stronger because it has pipe cleaners in it.

Darian: Two hedgehogs.  Two hedgehogs that are friends.

Once sculptures were finished, we had to figure out a technique for getting them off the table if they were stuck!  Fishing wire is perfect for this because it’s thin, yet strong enough to slide under clay without breaking.  Children enjoyed working with the fishing wire… some friends made holes and tunnels, while others used it solely to remove their piece from the table.

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Jude: Is it floss that you put under to get it off the table?

Wallace: This is what you use to catch a fish?  That’s so cool.

Jasper: I’m putting the fishing wire through the clay to make tunnels for worms.

AJ: I got it off the table!  AJ saves the day!

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