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ISBN 0807505579 - A Ball of Clay is a fairly simple, instructional book about making things with clay. While it appears to be a children's book, I think it works better as a book for a teacher or ... Read full review
ISBN 0807505579 - A Ball of Clay is a fairly simple, instructional book about making things with clay. While it appears to be a children's book, I think it works better as a book for a teacher or other adult who will be working with children.
Beginning with where to find clay - a creek bed is best but if you have to buy it, there's information about the kind of clay that's best - the book explains how to handle clay. In some detail, the reader learns how to make everything from basic shapes to various animals. Most directions are accompanied by a photograph that aids in clarifying them.
Hawkinson, particularly in the introduction, seems to have a good understanding of children and their fascination with clay. This made me confident that the book would be far less dry than a lot of instructional books. That the book IS a bit dry was a surprise. The instruction is simple to follow, with suggestions that really help a child get the idea - to help make a nose for a mask, the artist is told to feel his or her own nose for an idea of shape, for example. The problem I have with the book becomes obvious pretty early: with hands full of clay, referring to the book, turning the pages and reading, is difficult. This makes it better as a teacher's book but negates most of the value of the photos.