Friday, August 30, 2013

How About a Hand

This is a clay piece our elementary art team leader did at one of the Texas Art Education Association Conferences about 5 or so years ago, and brought back to teach us.  I did this with my 4th graders for about 3 years in a row.  The students are each given a ball of clay, then use a tool to slice into the clay 4 slits to make the five fingers.  From there, they just use a pinching technique to form the fingers.  They could stop observe their own hand and keep on working.  The hardest part is forming the fingers into a hand gesture if that is what they want.  Sometimes the fingers get thin and break off, which is easy to fix with a little extra clay and water. Also these are a little thicker than some clay pieces, so they will need a little extra drying time.  I decided to have the kids paint these with a lighter shade of acrylic paint, then decorate them with sharpie.  The first year we used only the thick sharpies, but later we added the use of smaller tip sharpies, which look much better.  These are my examples, because the kids liked them and took ALL of them...the nerve of them!!

This one is for all my UT friends, hook 'em.


  1. I love this idea. How much clay does each student get for the project?

  2. Hi there! I give each kid a ball of clay that would be about the size of a hacky sack. That is the closest thing I can think of... I always felt like the more clay there was, the more difficult of time they seemed to have working the clay into appropriate proportions. Thanks for stopping by! Shelly