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A Pottery

Clay and pottery are central to the history of Stoke. Much of the historical wealth of architecture can trace its roots to the time when Josiah Wedgewood was at his peak. The old buildings provide many opportunities for talking about features and embellishments.  

Clay provides many opportunities for talking about occupations as it still provides work for people in Stoke, in the factories where it is made, and in the shops where it is sold. There will be many different roles in the factory producing the pottery which could provide opportunities for finding out about work. 

Children are often fascinated by how things work and seeing the process of crockery being produced could be interesting to some children. It will also provide meaningful opportunities to extend their language, such as using extruder, fine bone china, earthenware, glaze, kilns, grog etc.

Clay can provide many chances to learn about the properties of a natural material and to talk about how it changes over time. This is especially true if it isn't kept moist. One of the benefits of having clay to explore is that it can be recycled and re-used.

There will be places in Stoke where you can dig up your own clay with the children and prepare it yourself. The depth of the hole you dig will denote the colour of the clay.

It is always good to give children variety as this opens up possibilities and there are a range of clays the children could experience. It will be important to let the children really explore the clay and its possibilities before expecting an end product. After all, the process is the important part and the possibilities are endless.