I love teaching children and have been doing it for over 15 years. Having children myself I realise how important creative confidence is. Everything I do in the children’s classes is to boost and maintain creative confidence. I set one project per hour lesson. Each project is very carefully designed, through the choice of clay, the choice of topic, the choice of glazing and the choice of firing technique to:
a) be age appropriate and b) maximise the visual impact and beauty of what a child’s hand is able to create. Clay is forever. Once a piece is fired it can outlast the lifespan of it’s maker. This has two implications:
1) I do not want to be responsible for littering the world with unrecognisable lumps of fired clay. Every piece that leaves my studio has to be beautiful
2) When the child that I am teaching is older, he/she will still be looking at what he/she created when he/she was younger. It is my hope that he/she will still see his creative ability and talent reflecting back at him and derive confidence from seeing what he has created.
The world is moving so fast. Who would ever have thought that the IT industry would have been so lucrative? Who knows what the world will ask from a child when they are adults? Who knows what skills they will require to be able to survive in the world? The most important thing you can arm your child with for his journey into the future is creative confidence. The knowledge that he or she can create something out of nothing is incredibly life affirming. It is empowering and fosters an entrepreneurial spirit. Through teaching children ‘pottery’ once a week, this is my hidden agenda. This is the real creation I am forming. For this reason I DO NOT skimp on materials. I use only the best materials with my young students, in order to produce superior results. They use porcelain, paper clay, I often fire their pieces above stoneware temperatures to achieve the results that will make them proud of their creative talents!
I currently only run the extra mural ceramics departments at 2 junior/pre schools. See attached pictures of one of the children’s exhibitions.
Please click on the thumbnails below to view the larger image: