CBMS Choice-Based Art Studio

CBMS Choice-Based Art Studio
CBMS Choice-Based Art Studio

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

 6th grade has "won" clay this term. It's not a competition, of course, but on kiln-unloading-days, the 6th graders' box is always the most full, and usually the most unique and exciting. But that is another story.
Test tiles to find the right antler color
This story is about the moose mug, pictured above. We, apparently, do not have the right color for moose antlers, and the student who made this mug needed a solution for this. 

Me: "Well, what a potter would do is make some test tiles, mixing various combinations. It would mean making the test tiles today, and waiting for them to be fired, before choosing one to use. I doubt you want to wait for that..."
Student: "Yes, that is what I want to do."
Me: "Oh!"

I provided several small bisqued tiles that we use on the top of glaze jars to show the color. I started marking the glaze colors on the back of the test tiles for the student, using a glaze pencil ("amber/yellow," yellow,/brown/white", etc). We tucked them into the kiln, and when I pulled them out, I noted that my student had added ratio numbers to my notes ("1 yellow/ 2 brown", "1 white/2 amber"). Oh my goodness! A potter!

Today a color was chosen and we found just enough space to sneak this moose into the kiln before the next firing. But wait! There's more! Another student approached me to describe a color needed for the pond that was ready for glaze - and it sounded just like the range of colors my student just made those tests for! So, Student 1 taught student 2 about how to mix the color chosen by following the noted ratios. 

A very good day in the clay center, and a big win for authentic studio-learning, where learners can go deep in areas of interest to become experts in their craft.