Residency – Silverwood Park – Christa Von Wald – 3hrs

This week at Silverwood Park I assisted with a senior clay class. The class created clay lanterns and then went on a snowshoe hike out on the lake. Christa had already prepped for the class and had the materials laid out, the room set up, and the clay slabs cut for each student. The class began with a talk about winter recreation with Noelle, one of the parks naturalists. She had a winter recreation trivia game to get everyone comfortable speaking and creating a fun atmosphere. Most students in the class had already met through other YMCA events, but the trivia was a great way to get everyone engaged in the beginning. When Christa took over, she passed around an example of the clay lantern and described the process to everyone. Each student was to take paper cut out shapes of hearts, trees, or snowflakes and imprint them into their clay slab. From there, the students used straws to poke out holes in the shapes for the light to shine through after the clay gets fired. When the students had their designs and their holes poked out, we formed the clay into a circle and started glazing them. The whole thing went very smoothly, mostly due to the fact that Christa had everything so prepared and each step was laid out very clearly all along the way. Overall everyone seemed to really enjoy working with clay and for some it was their first time.