Fine Art in a Pinch
Updated: Aug 9, 2019
One of the simplest and most enjoyable Fine Arts projects I've attempted with my children is making pinch pots! A brick of air-dry clay, a bowl of water, and voila! You have yourself a creative and enjoyable activity that keeps everybody focused and busy!
...That's not to say it's mess free. But it's a simple mess to clean up! A warm, wet rag takes care of that part. ;)
The clay that we used and loved is MindWare Air-dry clay. (You can find it on Amazon here).
Everyone started with their own brick, which we then broke into thirds. Once the pieces were separated, we began rolling them into small balls. We found that the easiest way to do this was to keep the clay very moist or wet. We used a tub of water, but a spray bottle would work as well.
The kids were able to do their own without much assistance apart from direction. Sidenote, the more water you use, the more the clay will rub off onto your hands! I don't think they minded though!
After the balls were formed, we made holes in the center of each one with our fingers and began pinching the sides to start forming small pots. It was cool to see the pots begin to take shape!
I'm not sure how long it took for the clay to fully dry, as we decided to paint them the next day. I can tell you that within 24 hours they were ready to be painted. My guess is that letting them sit overnight is a good idea. It's important that the clay is fully dry before painting.
We used basic acrylic paint and it worked really well! We used water to rinse and reuse brushes so we didn't end up with 1,000 brushes to wash. Just make sure to dry the bristles before dipping into the next color so the clay doesn't get too wet and begin to rub off.
Painting is a great way to help develop fine motor skills! The tiny brushes give little ones a chance to practice making small lines and designs.
Painting isn't my forte, but I had a lot of fun turning my tiny pinch pot into a mini ocean scene!