Clay Self-Portraits for First Grade

13 Dec

clay self portraits for first grade

Self-portraits are awesome. Clay is awesome. Put them together and you get a fun projects kids love and parents treasure forever.

Multi-slab cutter easily slices clay into identical tiles.

Multi-slab cutter easily slices clay into identical tiles.

I used a multi-slab clay cutter to slice the clay into tiles. The first graders used bamboo skewers and old glue caps to draw faces on the slabs. Remind students to draw on the clay but not too deeply – don’t cut all the way through!

First graders created self-portraits using clay slabs. Allow two 40-minutes sessions plus drying time.

First graders created self-portraits using clay slabs. Allow two 40-minutes sessions plus drying time.

I let the clay dry for 12 days, then bisque fired.

Now for color!

I saw a fabulous post on no-fire glazing techniques on the Art Smudge blog. The authors used watercolor, chalk pastel, colored pencil and more to finish bisque-fired clay (note: if you work with clay, please check out this post – it is amazing!).

We used Crayola Washable Paint In Multicultural Colors for the skin, and colored pencil and construction paper crayon for other details. A few students used colored chalk for their hair (note: the chalk was messy and will have to sprayed with a fixative – I won’t use chalk next year).

After bisque firing, clay was painted with tempera, then colored with crayons and colored pencil.

After bisque firing, clay was painted with tempera, then colored with crayons and colored pencil.

We had a range of skin tones to match – the Crayola eight bottle set of skin-tone paints matched pretty well. If anyone can recommend a set of multicultural glazes/underglazes please leave a comment!

clay portrait tiles painted with tempera

clay self portraits

 

Great job first graders!

Do you use glazes or cold finishes for clay?

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5 Responses to “Clay Self-Portraits for First Grade”

  1. Miss December 22, 2012 at 2:10 pm #

    Omg- these are so adorable! I love Grade 1 artwork! Super cool idea- thanks for sharing!
    Miss recently posted..Doily SnowmenMy Profile

    • Rina December 22, 2012 at 6:48 pm #

      Hi Miss – the kids loved making themselves in clay. I’m sure the parents will love them as well.

  2. Julie January 20, 2014 at 5:33 am #

    Oh génial ces autoportraits en argile ! Cela me donne des idées tiens pour mon groupe. Pour l’instant c’est la découverte des différentes utilisations du papier et après pourquoi pas l’argile. Merci pour ce partage.
    Julie recently posted..Vous cherchez des fournitures scolaires ?My Profile

    • Rina Vinetz January 20, 2014 at 11:21 am #

      Hi Julie
      Glad you liked the art project. Good luck!

      Salut Julie
      Glad vous avez aimé le projet artistique. Bonne chance!

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Clay and Pasta Portraits » K - 6 Art K – 6 Art - September 7, 2014

    […] For more examples and ideas, see this post on last year’s clay self-portraits. […]

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