Pour painting is a fun and fast way to make a flashy looking pot. The teens had a great time doing this activity.
Materials: small clay pots, latex house paint (four colors), small cups (or baby food jars), paint brushes (to mix your paint), small cardboard boxes, wax paper, twist ties, and toothpicks. Note: Cover the tables with a large plastic drop cloth. I use the same one every time and set the tables up in one big clump, which I call the Big Family Setup. Also, provide t-shirts or smocks. Tell them latex will not come off of their clothes if it dries.
Directions: 1. To prepare for this activity, you need to make a handle for each pot with the toothpicks and twist ties. You could have the teens make their own handles, but that might be risky. This is the handle idea I came up with: Break the toothpick in half. Twist one end of the twist tie around the middle of one of your toothpick halves. Poke the other end of the twist tie through the hole in the bottom of the pot, and twist that end of the twist tie around the other toothpick half. 2. Make sure the bottoms of your boxes are securely taped, so that paint won’t leak out. Place the pot upside-down in the cardboard box. 3. Prepare the paint by mixing it with a little water in a cup. I made three cups of each color. 4. Instruct the teens to pour slowly. They don’t have to pick up the pot when they are pouring paint, but if they do, that is fine. 5. When they are done with their pot, they can lift it out of the box (using the handle) and place it on a piece of wax paper. 6. Another project that seemed to grow out of this one could be called Box Marbling. Using the paint that collect in the box, tilt the box to create awesome designs. 7. Put the boxes and pots in a place where they can dry overnight.
General Suggestion: If you have a teen friend who wants to photograph the activity, you may find that you have a great record of what went on, as well as more time to focus on the task at hand.