This is an incredibly versatile clay project we did with children from ages 4 - 11 all sitting at the table working side by side each at their own skill level. We made sushi for hours with such an array of materials at the table. We had fabric, beads, rice, puff balls, little pieces of styrofoam, paper, some plastic leaves, glitter, plastic flowers, colored pasta. When setting up this project I slowly wandered through the studio looking for suitable materials, grabbing as many jars off the shelves as possible. I knew the more the kids had to choose from the better. Each student began with either a bento box made from a shoebox lid or with a sushi platter made from tongue depressors.
With just a little bit of demonstration of flattening clay and rolling up fabrics inside as if it were seaweed, off the kids went, rolling, cutting, gluing, dipping, creating gorgeous and carefully designed little sculptures. They were getting ideas from each other and creating new ideas from the materials, beads as fish eggs, fabric as thin strips of carrot to wrap around a rice cake made from styrofoam, plastic leaves as salad.
It was a glorious morning.