I don't remember what grade level you said you were teaching.....
I am certain Marvin Bartel has some clean-up suggestions on his site,
but I haven't had a chance to look.
Here are some suggestions from me:
1. Keep using the canvas cloths and wash them regularly - do get the
bulk of the clay off of them first. Clay will stick to plastic. We
tried to shake them off held deep down into the trash can so as not to
stir up too much dust. When I did it myself, I wore a dust mask. Of
course, you personally could take them outside to shake them off - I
would still advise you wear a dust mask.
2. If the custodian will not mop your room each day - get an older
student to come in mop (just with a damp mop) p OR do it yourself.
Your health and the health of the student warrants it. Have the
custodian bring down one of those big buckets and one of those big
string mops - the job goes very quickly. Actually, if the custodian
won't do it everyday you are working with clay - take it up with the
administration (if is a real health issue)....but be careful as they
may say then you can't use clay.... and you don't want that to happen.
3. Rather than sweeping with a broom - bring in a wet dry vacuum. I
used my old wet dry vacuum to get the bulk off the tables and floor
before the custodian would come and and sweep. He did have a special
dust mop that he used only for my room.
4. To cut down on the tracking of dust throughout the building - get a
large piece of carpet and tap in down to the floor at the door of your
classroom. Have the students wipe their feet - and vacuum this rug
everyday. They will track far less dust. My rug was approximately 4
feet x 6 feet. The custodian vacuumed it everyday - and I tried to
vacuum it mid day.
Marvin, if you read this - please correct anything have said that is
bad advice. I hate giving the wrong advice to the list.
On a side note... I have not had bronchitis at all since I retired
from teaching... I used to get it once or twice a year - and yes -
usually when I was working with clay. I also have not needed to use an
inhaler since I retired (of coures avoiding cigarette smoke has also
helped with this).