We get it. Really, we do. Playdough gets on the carpet. The “thinking putty” left a huge stain on the couch. And don’t even get us started on kinetic sand. So WHY would we suggest enrolling your child in a ceramics class? Particularly an online one that would take place IN. YOUR. HOUSE. Well...honestly, the question we’re asking (and hopefully you will be soon too) is WHY NOT!?
Why is ceramics important in our life?
Honestly, we could get deeply analytical and wax poetic in deep metaphors about what creating with ceramics does for humans of all ages. Instead, we’ll keep it simple. In addition to the techniques and skills they learn, kids get to work with one of the most important artistic mediums in the history of man: clay. After all, that is what formed Michelangelo’s “David.” Who knows? Perhaps the next Rodin is living in your home, and all they need is to get started. Even if your child doesn’t turn out to be an accomplished artist or craftsperson, learning to create a piece of art from scratch is a process that is undoubtedly beneficial in a variety of ways.
What are the benefits of taking a pottery class?
1. Self expression
You know how proud your child is of all the pictures they color and cartoons they draw? Pottery is that x 10. There’s no Wimpy Kid or Captain Underpants for them to emulate (we are not throwing shade at either of these, by the way.) With pottery, there’s not really much in the way of pre-existing perfection, so it’s just them, the clay, and their vision.
2. It’s zen
Okay, we may be dipping into the “woo woo” side of things here, but clay is natural. It’s visceral. Working with clay can be extremely relaxing. The focus required, plus the repetitive motions of rolling and smoothing the clay will most likely be soothing for your child. It’s basically the physical and mental opposite of what many kids spend their time doing on the daily: typing, swiping, pressing, and absorbing the glare of blue light.
3. Problem solving and spatial awareness
Ceramics is a three dimensional art. It requires looking at an object, or a problem, from more than one angle. Could there be a more clear metaphor for life and it’s challenges? Figuring out how thin they can roll the clay and still manage to have their creation stand up, or deducing what went wrong between the shaping stage and the firing stage is a valuable. By making mistakes but knowing how to fix them, they won’t fear failure or evaluate solely on the finished product.
4. Pride and self esteem
Ceramics is a functional art. Kids will see that they take a lump of clay and it becomes something — a bowl, a mug, a vase — that they made, and which can be used and enjoyed for decades. Seeing a product rise from their efforts will give them an immense amount of pride, as well as create a souvenir of the process.
What are the disadvantages of Ceramics?
We can’t really think of any, other than a little dirt and maybe the chance of you getting “Unchained Melody” stuck in your head. (And if you don’t get that joke, then congrats. You’re young, even if you are a parent!)