Exploring Clay | Day 11 – 30 Days to TYP

Exploring Clay - 30 Days to Transform Your Play {An Everyday Story}

30 Days to Transform Your Play Day 11 Exploring Clay {An Everyday Story}Day 11 in our 30 Days to Transform Your Play series. Another invitation for you today; clay. Today we are going to be exploring clay together. How you will approach this exploration will depend upon how much experience your child has had with clay.

Exploring Clay - 30 Days to Transform Your Play {An Everyday Story}I wrote about clay as part of my Authentic Art Materials for Toddlers on Playful Learning. Here’s a little snippet:

“…Clay is natural, it comes from the earth. It is cool to the touch and soft on our skin. It has a deep earthy smell which invites you in. Clay can be sculpted far more intricately than play dough. Just by covering it over, clay can be returned to day-after-day, added to, sculpted, encouraging sustained inquiry and creativity.

Clay is strong, it can be sculpted higher and higher, on a much larger scale, encouraging problem-solving and critical thinking as your child tries to negotiate how to build a roof, or determine why their bridge keeps collapsing…”  

Materials:

  • clay
  • a kitchen tile, plastic clipboard or something similar with a smooth surface for a base
  • a mirror to place in front of your child
  • a bucket of water and a towel for washing

Clay Materials - An Everyday StoryOptional Materials:

  • clay tools
  • materials for making impressions
  • materials for making sculptures
    • wire
    • beads
    • sticks
    • lace and fabric scraps
    • small pieces of wooden dowel

Homeschool Kindergarten - working with clay (An Everyday Story)30 Days to Transform Your Play Day 11 - Clay {An Everyday Story}The Exploration:

  • place a good-sized piece of clay on your tile and add the mirror (leaning on the wall in front of the child – see the outdoor photo in the collage above)
  • if your child has never explored clay before, leave them to explore without any tools
    • encourage them to squash, poke and roll the clay
    • pull parts off
    • push their whole hands into it
    • pinch it and stretch it
  • after an initial exploration you could:
    • add some tools for scraping and cutting (present them in a clear container or jar to emphasis the beauty of the tool)
    • add a little water to see how this changes the texture (again presented in a clear container)
    • add some materials for making impressions (a wooden tray or bowls would look appealing here; complimenting the colour of the clay)

Share your invitation to explore clay on Facebook or on Instagram using #30daystyp

If you missed a post, here’s the rest of the series.

Don’t forget to check out Rachel’s posts on Racheous – Lovable Learning

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6 Comment

  1. I tried clay with my kids a few weeks ago and it is the messiest thing we have ever done! I’m wondering if there is a certain kind of clay to get that is not so sticky or is that is just how it is? I ended up giving them cups of water to wet the clay, which is part of how it ended up so messy. Thanks for this series. It has been fun follow along!

    1. I can be quite messy 😀 Some clays are definitely stickier than others and the water would have made it messier. The more they get to used to working with clay the more they’ll refine their skills and it’ll be less messy. They’ll start to create different sculptures and work in different ways. It is a wonderful medium.

  2. Elizabeth Williams says:

    Would you mind letting me know what type of clay and where you purchase it? Thanks!

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