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My alter ego is "Mrs Clay"

Volunteering at the local primary has become a regular part of my year.

Most classes have three sessions each and projects are designed to fit the current curriculum topic.

Last term Y1 looked at autumn and we made slab pots with impressed leaves (see photo) painted with glorious autumnal underglaze colours.

Then we made little pinched pots for sprouting acorns...

Y2 were studying China and there was a huge choice of pottery possibilities.

We made pinched tea-bowls in white clay with

Mandarin characters for tea - sadly the glaze

splintered off and they couldn't be used for drinking

real green tea as planned but they look good

displayed outside the classroom ...

The Terracotta Army figures were much more

successful though, and we also made

traditional-looking dragon statues out of coils of buff clay.

In January it was time for Y3 and Y4.

The focus for Y3 was "Chocolate" - another rich source of inspiration.

Three different colours of slip (to represent three colours of chocolate) were swirled around simple slab bowls to create marbled patterns that came alive when glazed (no shivering flakes of glaze this time) and the pinched and lidded "cocoa pod" dishes came out well, although I think they'll look better under a coat of acrylic paint! The third session was inspired by bars of chocolate: we made TicTacToe games: a squared board and sets of counters.

Y4 were working on work on habitats - so we made little nesting boxes for birds or bugs followed by "hollow tree" pencil pots, adorned with various wood-living creatures.

Prompted by a forthcoming visit to a mosque, we also made Islamic tiles with four-part symmetry: they look great grouped as a panel but will probably end up as individual coasters!

In a couple of weeks Nursery

and Reception will be making

little clay chicks - of course

we will start with an egg-shaped

piece of clay!

Y5 and Y6 have to wait til the summer

term - but that will be fun as well :))

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