From the Teacher
It has been an extraordinary period working with my students in various grades on making life forms with clay. We first spent time learning what clay is and learning words that describe how to manipulate the clay. We started out just playing with it by touching, pinching, rolling, coiling. The students' reactions to this material was curiousity, amazement, surprize, and happiness. They were focused, totally absorbed, having fun and learning at the same time. The clay had captured their full attention. We talked about where clay comes from and the different objects that are made out of clay. Using their motor skills and imagination, the students learned basic techniques on how to create a three dimensional realistic composition.
Through individual investigation students were able to express their ideas, concepts and a whole new range of individual interpretation. The students made connections on how to produce a life form that they would not have otherwise been able to do at their age with any other material. The students were able to contruct new meaning in making art. Through observation and hand dexterity students were engaged in new ways of building,creating balance, determining size and design. Application of math principles came into focus when they had to add clay in some places and subtract clay in other places. Individuality and diversity was evidenced in the way each students' artwork came to completion.
Even when they finished, they did not want to stop. I am completely confident that these students will remember this project and be eager to do it again. It was a pleasure being a facilitator and witness to this experience. As an educator, this project reinforces what is means to be a teacher, giving children the opportunity, time and materials to expand their learning experience. Children want to learn more when we give them the right environment, motivation and materials to work in and strive for success. By providing the resources you made this opportunity possible. On behalf of my students and myself we all thank you.
From the Students