As a group, our classrooms decided to explore with clay this year. We are interested to see how each different age group reacts and manipulates clay and what types of strategies the children use as they get older.
In our classroom, we chose to start exploring with red clay. The children at first were not that interested in clay, but after a few times of being exposed to it and exploring with it, they began to gain confidence and got excited about working with the clay. Many of the children were exploring how it feels. The children love to use play dough in the classroom, but clay feels different and leaves a residue as they work with it, so it took a few tries before they became more comfortable.
Right away we noticed the children describing how the clay feels and beginning to use their hands to manipulate it. One of the first things we noticed was how the children began pinching pieces off of a big chunk of clay. Some of the children started to line the little pieces up and others attempted to roll the clay between their hands. It was very interesting to watch the interest grow as their comfort level grew.