There is something relaxing about working with clay. It must be the squishing of moist clay through your fingers…
Air drying terracotta clay is a wonderful material for kids (and adults!) craft projects. In this two-session kids workshop we created birds-of-peace / birds-of-friendship / birds-of-happiness / birds… birds… birds… that can be hung on the wall.
Each day we allowed 1 1/2 hours for the craft session. One hour would have probably been enough if we only did the birds, but I always expect some children working faster than the others, and so I allowed an extra half an hour and an extra lump of clay for a side project. This seemed to work perfectly.
The shape of the bird (more or less a duck look a like) was cut from clay with a help of a paper stencil. After this the children were able to add a wing and give the bird the look they desired with shaping its eyes and beak as well as decorating the surface with their desired structure. Simple wooden sticks and plastic cutlery were perfect utencils for this.
To allow the clay to dry adequately before painting them we had a week between the workshop dates. For painting and decorating the birds we used simple student acrylic paints. Acrylic paints are ideal for this kind of project as they are fast drying and you don’t have to first treat the dried clay object with a sealant. Acrylic paint is a sealant itself.
I am so proud of all the childrens creations! Everyone used their creativity and imagination and seemed to have enjoyable time!!! As far as a low cost school holiday workshop goes… this was a total success! (although I have heard that two birds were broken since by a family pet, but all that means is: we need another workshop SOON!)