Exciting things are happening in the high school art room! We have expanded our pottery and ceramics into a more authentic studio space. The wheels, tables, and shelving equipment now have their very own room (next to the art room). This new space is being utilized almost every class period each day.
The ceramics expansion is due to the addition of Miss Abbie Demmitt, who took over our jr. high and high school art program last year. She comes to us with an emphasis in pottery and ceramics, and with a vision for collaborating art with science, technology, engineering and math subjects.
“I have kids who are struggling in academics, but they are a natural here,” Miss Demmitt shared. They can come in here and they are top of their class for the first time. And I love that it involves so many skills that we don’t usually think of as art, things like engineering, masonry, chemistry. There’s really heavy lifting...and spatial problem-solving and craftsmanship.”
Under Miss Demmitt's guidance, our growing pottery and ceramics art class is “shaping students’ futures in ceramics.” This is exciting because the applications in the workplace for skills in ceramics is growing.
“Ceramics is about putting your time in. So now that we have more of a studio experience, students who are serious about ceramics are working on independent projects during their study halls. They can come in without interrupting my classroom,” said Miss Demmitt.
Skills learned on the pottery wheel not only create future artists, but as our TC students collaborate more with STEM subjects, pottery/ceramics have applications in the workforce outside of art.
For instance, injection molding can rely on clay molds, and many business and manufacturing companies use clay models during the prototype phase of development. Clays and their uses in the beauty, health and science industries are well documented. And, finally, a love of clay pottery and ceramics can lead students into the field of ceramics made with other materials. These types of ceramics are used in almost every industry, including aeronautics, computer technology and manufacturing.
A love of learning for the materials and processes involved in creating pottery and clay ceramics has many science and technology crossovers for our students, including:
Utilizing the wheel -- understanding mechanics and motion
Learning about clays and other molding materials which could lead to a love of ceramics
Understanding the heat process and how it changes strength, components and integrity
Using glazes, paints, glosses and stains which act and react differently
Understanding the components of the glazes and paints for best applications to pottery
Crafting handmade tiles for art, decorative or design purposes
Collaborating on a creative process with STEM students
One of the future goal of our pottery and ceramics art class is to build our own kiln. Miss Demmitt plans to collaborate with our STEM students and art students in the near future to accomplish the kiln project.
In addition, we will be holding pottery and ceramics “camps” this summer, open to the public. The details are being finalized at this time, but a brochure will be created soon. Look for a schedule for students and adults!
Thank you Miss Demmitt for bringing your love of ceramics to our school.