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May 2014


BY: Windlan, Badour, Kwiatkowski  


         One day, Jamie and Snowball went to visit Jamie's mom at work. She was a ceramics teacher. Snowball really wanted to make a coil pot, so Jamie's mom gave them 2 lbs of clay.
 "Do you want to make a functional or decorative pot?" Jamie asked.

"We should mae a decorative pot," Snowball answered while jumping.




    Jamie's mom came over to check on them. 
 "Now remember," she reminded, "make sure to keep the clay moist so that it is workable."
"But how do we do that?" Jamie asked.
"Spray it while you are working and wrap it up in a damp cloth when you put it away"
"Thanks mom." 

       Before they rolled out the coils, they had to wedge the clay. Snowball used the rams head method by pressing into the clay with the palm of his paws while keeping the clay in a ball. When he finished, he cut the clay to check for air bubbles.
"Why do we have to check for air bubbles?" Snowball questioned.
"Because if there were any holes in the clay it could blow up in the kiln." Jamie explained.
"Oh, ok"


       "Ok Snowball, now we need to roll out a base."

"I'll go grab a rolling pin," Snowball answered.
"Roll it out flat, into a slab, and cut out a circle with the fettling knife," explained Jamie.

"We use a lot of different coil techniques in this pot, Snowball," said Jaime. 

"What are they?" asked Snowball.

"Well, we use horizontal coils, vertical coils, and spiral coils."

"How do we make a coil?" inquired Snowball.

"Roll your paws back and forth and out as you go until you get a snake shape."


"To attach everything together, you have to use three techniques called score, slip, and knit," informed Jaime.

"I am very confused!" cried Snowball. 

"Don't worry, we will take it slow; first grab a fork," assured Jaime. "Scratch lines on the edge of the base and the bottom of the coil with your fork." 

"Now it's time for slip!" exclaimed Snowball.

"Right," encouraged Jaime. "Stir clay and water together in a small plastic cup. This sticky mixture helps the pieces of clay stick to each other. I like to use a modeling modeler to apply the slip to all the areas we scored. Go ahead and give it a try Snowball." 

"Next," continued Jaime, "we knit the coils to each other and to the base by using the flat end of the modeling liner to smoothly join the coils together."

"Now we'll start the additive and subtractive layer," stated Jaime.

"What's the difference between additive and subtractive?" asked Snowball.

"Well Snowball, your favorite shape is a circle so we are going to have additive detail by attaching circles to our coil vessel using the score, slip, and knit techiques. This will make the circles stick out from the rest of the vessel," explained Jaime. "For subtractive detail, we will carve out lines using the modeling liner tool.


"Next, we need to clean up the clay boogers to make our coil project look as pretty as possible," said Jaime. 

"Ok, but how exactly do we do that," questioned Snowball.

"You can use the double tipped wipe away tool or the fine point wipe away tool."

"So I just rub it along the clay to clean it?" asked snowball.

"Exactly, and then when you are done we will let it sit out for two weeks to let it completely dry," said Jamie. 


"Ok snowball, now it's time to put your vase in the kiln," explained Jamie.

"We will be firing it in greenware form and it will come out in its bisqueware form."

"Cool," said snowball.

"Now we have to set the kiln to cone 04/1940 degrees fahrenheit."

said Jamie. 


" I am so excited that my vase survived in the kiln, I must have done a good job," squeaked Snowball.

"You did a great job, and now we can sand it and then rinse it to make sure the glaze sticks," explained Jamie. 

"Start picking out some glazes that you like," pointed Jamie. 


"There are so many glazes to choose from, but I think I found what I like," hopped Snowball.

"You can glaze each design on your pot with a different color and you can also create designs just by using glaze."

"Wow, glaze will make my vase look great," exclaimed Snowball.


"Now it's time to glaze fire your vase Snowball," smiled Jamie.

"I'm really excited, can I set it in," asked Snowball.

"Sure, this time your vase will be going from bisqueware form to glazeware."

"Now we just have to set the kiln to cone 04-05/1915 degrees fahrenheit,"

said Jamie. 


"Yay Snowball, you did great on your first ceramics project, I am so proud of you."

"I love my vase too, and all of the hard work paid off,"smiled Snowball.

"I think I will be able to make a vase all by myself now," squeaked Snowball.