Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Clay Tools

Students have been having a blast with clay projects recently! I am always looking for new tools to use with clay, and have picked up a few new favorites. 

All of the tools are stored as assortments for each table team. My supply room had an overload of plastic clam shell boxes, the kind that you might buy a pound cake in from the grocery. I break them by bending the plastic hinge back and forth until it comes apart. These boxes have become the go to storage accessory in the art room. You may also notice at the top of the tray there are some long kitchen skewers. The skewers work great for scoring the clay or for making small holes to add wire or string after the clay items have been fired.

Standard clay tools are the first in the box. Students use these for scoring the clay and for pressing into the clay to make a variety of textures.

I like to include recycled items for adding texture. Some objects come from the art room. Spool end pieces from rolls of banner paper make radial designs when pressed into clay. Great repeated circles can be achieved with this plastic glue stick holder. 

Bottle caps in all sizes can be pressed into or rolled along the clay to make different designs. I encourage the students not to press these into the clay like cookie cutters and cutting circles from the clay. The clay tends to get stuck in them. 

One of my new favorite recycle items is the handle from disposable razors. The kids get a kick out of them, and they can be pressed into the clay along their length or on the end.

It seems fitting, as a Florida school,  to have an assortment of sea creature toys and shells in our tool box.

Sometimes, I find a random fork in the parking lot that gets added to the collection.

What are your favorite unconventional clay tools?

1 comment:

  1. I want to start working with paperclay. You've offered some wonderful ideas for marking and sculpting tools, especially the disposable razors. I'm a fan of recycling and reusing. Thanks.