Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Clay Jack-o-Lanterns

Each student gets a clay circle for the base of the coil pot.

Marble sized balls of clay are rolled into coils on Masonite boards.
The pot is constructed on a paper towel so it will not stick to anything. Coils are built up to give height to the sides. 

A cookie cutter clay leaf will be added to the second circle which will be the lid.

Coils need to be pinched together and smoothed on the inside
so the pot will not fall apart.

The teacher uses a wooden spatula to paddle the coil pot
into a sphere shape.

The teacher also uses a potter's needle tool to cut in the face.
Children are asked what type of face they want.
The tool is too dangerous for children to handle.
The second circle is added as the lid with a coil stem.
The leaf is drawn on with a pencil by the kids and everything is glued together with slip.

Jack-o-lanterns are sent home with a small candle inside
to light on Halloween!

See our video here:

This is my original project.
Please link back to me if you use it in your class.

Haunted Houses for Halloween

This project allows for a lot of creativity as the student thinks of objects to place in their clay house!

Each student is given a small block of clay. The back needs to be hollowed out with a trimming tool before hand creating a spooky cave and allowing the clay to dry evenly. This project will need to dry slowly for at least two weeks.

Spider legs, pumpkins, bats and ghosts are made in miniature to be attached to the house with clay slip. 

The cave in the back has glued in creepy critters.
Of course, clay slip is the glue.

Windows are carved out with a trimming tool 
and pumpkins glued in.

A chimney on top and climbing skeleton hangs on the side.

A door creaks open to reveal a bat or ghost!

This clay door is wide open to unleash the terrors within!

Village of the abandoned and adorned. 

These were made with low fire white clay fired to cone 04.
Dry very slowly for at least two weeks or more. I set a fan on them at the end. If the clay is cold on your cheek it is not ready to bisque fire. Continue to dry or load kiln and candle it with only the lowest switch on low for two hours with the lid ajar. Turn off, close lid and leave it alone for a day. Feel the clay again for dryness before doing the actual bisque firing. These can blow up during firing due to their thickness. 

Glaze with cone 04 glaze then glaze fire.

Over the many years of doing this project the glaze used that year really makes the piece.

This is my original idea that I have never seen anywhere else. Please link to me if your class uses my idea.
Thank you!

Please watch our video of this project!