You might want to try the book, "Hands in Clay" by Charlotte Spreight and
At 09:15 PM 6/29/97 -0500, you wrote:
>At 02:40 PM 6/29/97 -0400, jendixon wrote:
>>I'm going to be teaching a course, at the high school level , in
>>ceramics. As a painter, I'm a little warry of my ceramic skills and
>>knowledge background. Does anyone have any good resource book that they
>>could suggest for my summer reading?
>I have many books about clay sculpture, pottery. kiln building, and glazes,
>yet, I think Glen Nelson's text is still one of the best entry level books
>with an assortment of history, technique, etc.
>You may want to concentrate on specialized books about handbuilding
>techniques unless you have several wheels in the studio. I would suggest
>you visit a local clay and glaze supplier and look through the assortment of
>books that they have on hand.
> In the end, you would be better off getting your hands in the clay rather
>then reading about it. Think about the equipment, budget, and class
>size...... then start thinking about projects which will give the kids the
>best variety of experiences with the resources at hand.
>We usually work through assorted pinch pot projects, coil pots, slab forms,
>drape and press molding, tiles, and assorted small sculpture projects, but
>only the coil projects reqiure construction of more then 14 " in height
>simply because storage and kiln space is so limited.
>I let the kids use my wheel only the last two weeks of the Ceramics 1
>semester. I usually walk each kid though wedging centering, opening, raising
>and shaping and we throw one form toghether (My hands over theirs so they
>can get a sense of the correct pressure and the timing in relation to the
>spin of the wheel, the torque, gravity, etc. ). Then I let them try to do
>one or tow on their own if they want. I never force a student to use the
>wheel unless they request the experience. . I feel that if the students
>really take an interest in the wheel, there will be plenty of time in
>college for them to come at it again. After a BFA. MA, MFA and 20+ years as
>a professional potter, I hope I am qualified to say that the wheel requires
>a lifetime of dedication for mastery and the best a Ceramics 1 class can do
>is give the kids a taste or the tool and its volcabulary. With the
>handbuilding techniques they have more freedom and a better chance at success.
> I should mention that we also spend a little class time talking about the
>chemistry of clay and glaze as well as the fire. Each student is responsible
>for helping load and unload the kiln. They are also responsible for written
>tests and reading assignments (usually my handouts) as part of their course.