1. Make a small round ball for an eye
2. Pick where you want the eye to go and "score" in that spot (make little lines with a toothpick)
3. Score one side of the eye
4. Use the paintbrush and water and brush a tiny bit of water where you scored, so that the piece will stick on, like glue
5. Match up the scored parts together
6. Use your finger to blend the clay together around the edges of the two pieces, so they'll stay together
Many of the children were using the brush and water ("slip") on their own to attach the pieces. Once I went around the group one-on-one and showed them the scoring technique, they learned the concept. I also took their finger and moved it for them, showing them how to blend the edges.
After drying for a day or two, I removed the apples. Some came out more easily than others, but they all came out without cracking the clay. Clay shrinks when it dries, so you don't want to let the clay dry too much before removing, or it will crack. This original activity was done with orange halves, which may be easier to remove, but messier with the juice while working with them.
It was impressive to see that all of the children, including the three year olds followed the instructions and made at least eyes and mouths. They also were very controlled in their use of water. For children that finished early, I encouraged them to add designs on top or around the edges. I could see their excitement and care in what they were doing, knowing that they were going to be saving these pieces of three-dimensional art. One child would not leave the room when time was up because he had to add feet for his dinosaur.
We had bad news about access to a kiln, so we may need to use acrylic paint and either triple gloss varnish or floor wax to make it shiny. Hopefully, the kiln will come through. Next week, we will be painting the sculptures and I will share pictures on this blog. This Friday we have a holiday, but look for new posts every Wednesday about the art lesson I did with the children the week before. I hope the posts will help give new art ideas for teachers or parents of preschool age children.