Wednesday, December 1, 2021

Leaf Bowls


This is an easy and fun project the yields great results. My elementary school students went on a nature walk around campus with me. We felt bark, smelled pine needles, and picked a few large leaves off of the trees or the ground. Then we pressed the backs (veiny side) of the leaves into slabs of clay and traced them with a ceramic needle or knife. The leaf shapes were then placed on upside down metal mixing bowls to help them curve, and we used the score and slip technique to make a foot (either a coil in a ring, or three balls are the easiest). This lifts the leaf bowl off the surface and gives it a little shadow. These can be used for holding soap, earrings, keys, ear buds, or just as a stand alone decoration. I love how in just 30 minutes, my students are getting an interdisciplinary lesson that teaches them about autumn and types of trees, as well as techniques such as rolling a slab and correctly attaching pieces of clay.

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