For Schools

The following clay based workshops for JK to Grade 8 are tied to the Ontario Ministry of Education Curriculum Guides.

FOR CURRICULUM EXTENSIONS and more information please visit

See the end of the Grade 7/8 section for whole or partial whole school workshops.


The workshops include setup and cleanup in the class, materials, firing (hardening of the clay) and delivery of the finished pottery within three weeks of the workshop.

  1. One hour workshops. $100 plus HST and $2.50/student materials fee. Note: a minimum of three classes on one day are required for this price per workshop.
  2. Half-day workshops: $209 plus HST and $3.75/child materials fee. If two workshops are booked on the same day, the cost per workshop falls to $190 plus HST and $3.75/child materials. (this covers all of the workshops other than the JK/SK workshops)

Six or more workshops conducted as pairs (ie. as an AM and PM workshop on the same day) on consecutive days - $180 plus HST per workshop and $3.50/child materials and firing.

Welcome to The Pottery: For Schools

Grade: JK-SK

  1. Candle Holder
    Duration 1 hour
    Students will pinch a shallow saucer and add a candle holder tube and handle to create a functioning candle holder. They will then paint their piece.
  2. Free Exploration
    Duration 1 hour
    Students will explore clay by producing any object they desire. Joining and molding techniques will be discussed and creativity encouraged.

Grade One

  1. Relationship Plate
    Duration 1.5 to 2 hours
    Students will create a platter using a variety of pottery techniques. The platter will then be decorated with pictures of important people in the studentís life. The interrelationships of these people and the student will be represented on the platter.
  2. Event Plaque
    Duration 1 to 1.5 hours
    Students will roll out clay, cut it into an oval shape and will add relief and impressed textures. They will also use cut out letters to mask out a name on their plaque. Coloured paints will then be applied over the masked area and the paper removed to show the name underneath, surrounded by the coloured paint. Examples include DAD for fatherís day, MOM for motherís day etc.
Welcome to The Pottery: For Schools

Grade Two

  1. Mask Making
    Duration 2 to 3 hours
    An exploration of different cultural characters will be facilitated by the creation of clay theater masks. Some of the theatrical masks examined will be from Japanese Noh theater, Greek theater, North-West Coast Native dance masks and African dance masks.
  2. Toad House (also for Grade Four)
    Duration 1 to 2 hours
    We will explore how animals respond to their environment and how humans can help or harm living things. We will use the toad house to explore the requirements of reptiles and amphibians for survival.

Grade Three

  1. Critical Issue-Food
    Duration 2 to 3 hours
    For European settlers and First Nations people alike, collecting and storing food was critical for survival. This workshop will explore the issue of food storage and preparation from both a European and First Nations standpoint. Students will create vessels to deal with specific storage needs.
  2. False Face Society
    Duration 2 to 3 hours
    The Iroquois False Face Society was a broad based societal effort to deal with illness. Using a ceremony involving many participants in a community, a spiritual rebalancing would take place in an effort to return the ill to a state of health. An integral part of this ceremony was the use of grotesque masks. In this workshop students will make their own false face mask.
Welcome to The Pottery: For Schools

Grade Four

  1. Lords, Ladies and the Lowly
    Duration: 2 hours
    Social divisions were extreme in medieval society. We will explore these differences using pottery as a discussion tool. Students will create a tumbler or rough bowl of peasant style, a jug commonly used by wealthier land owners or the goblet preferred by the nobility.
  2. Toad House- See Grade 2 listing for details
  3. Green Man Mask
    Duration: 2-2.5 hours
    In most times and cultures, a societies understanding of nature was critical to itís survival. In medieval Europe the Green Man was a symbol of the cycle of birth, growth, maturity, death and rebirth. The masks and sculptures of this period show a human face augmented with leaves and vines covering portions or most of the face. For our masks we will broaden the concept to incorporate any natural element with the human face. For instance: insects, water, fire, flowers etc.

Grade Five

  1. Storage Dilemma
    Duration 2 hours
    Many early civilizations thrived and grew as a result of the ability to produce and store agricultural surplus. In all of these cultures clay vessels became a primary tool for food storage. Students will explore the developments in food storage while producing their own clay storage vessel. They will explore different methods traditionally used to produce pottery including coil, flat coil, paddling, pinching.
  2. Death and the Afterlife
    Duration 1.5 to 2.5 hours
    Students will explore the differing beliefs about death and the afterlife in several ancient civilizations. We will also examine the ceremonies connected with death and the preparation of the deceased for the afterlife. Workshop participants will create a clay funerary object, either an Egyptian canopic jar or burial mask.
Welcome to The Pottery: For Schools

Grade Six

  1. Food Storage
    Duration 1.5 to 2.5 hours
    First Nations people across Canada had to deal with varying natural environments. This resulted in a variety of methods for food gathering, growing and storage. We will briefly explore these methods and then focus on the Southern Ontario Huron and Iroquois. Students will explore their different pottery construction and decorative techniques.
  2. False Face Society
    Duration 2 to 3 hours
    See the workshop description for grade three.

Grade Seven and Eight

Workshops meeting many of the grade seven and eight curriculum requirements can be discussed with any interested teachers.

Note: The workshop duration is determined by the teacher's requirements. The clay workshop alone will take the minimum time suggested. If more exploration of the subject matter is requested, the maximum workshop duration will be required.

Whole School Or Large Group Workshops

The following workshops can be offered to groups as large as 60 students. It is assumed that there will be two staff to help during the workshops. Each workshop takes approximately 1 ľ hours to conduct. Each costs $2.00/ student for materials and the following workshop costs:

  • One workshop - $300.00
  • Two workshops - $550.00
  • Three workshops- $775.00

The following topics are offered for the large group workshops:

  1. Candle Holder- Students make and paint a candleholder similar to those used by the early European settlers.
  2. First Nations inspired mini food storage pot- Students will use the pinch pot technique with added coil and textural decoration to produce a small version of these versatile cooking and storage vessels.
  3. Gargoyle- A small sculpture exploring these fascinating creatures.