Art is the only way to run away without leaving home. ~Twyla Tharp

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Melted Glass, Dale Chihuly and blobs o'plastic

We have been working on a 'Dale Chihuly' project this week.  I saw a lesson on Pinterest.  ~~~Oh, Pinterest, how in the world did I ever teach anything before I started pinning?  I'll have to teach until I am 70 before I run out of ideas and lets face it, that's not gonna happen.~~~
 The original lesson was from Arts for Life and I thought 'Cool!' and gave it a shot.  I'm not sure what I did wrong, but my circles did not turn out quite so, uhm, circular.  Not being one to give up easily (and after finding this on MaryMaking's blog) I thought to myself 'Chihuly!'.

We watched a couple of videos about Dale Chihuly that I found on youtube to start the lesson. The kids were fascinated with the glass blowing process.  After some research, we've been experimenting with different types of plastic and have found that #1 and #6 plastic seems to work the best.  We've been using the Chinet Cut Crystal 6 oz. cups (#6 plastic) and the Wal-Mart Brand  6 oz cups (#1 plastic). We also found some old, discarded nacho trays that melt very, uhm, interestingly.

 The Chinet Cups sort of curl up into a ball and end up looking like sea shells.

Or, you can smoosh them with a spatula:

The #1 plastic cups melt on to themselves and you have to smoosh them flat.

So now, I have a whole box of sparkly bobs of plastic and smooshy roundish plastic and we haven't gotten close to melting all of them.  I think that we are going to make mobiles to hang in the windows at the end of every hallway above the outside doors with the flat ones and create some kind of collaborative sculpture with the blobby ones.

My young darlings are horribly disappointed that they won't be able to take home their plastic blobs, even though I have tried to encourage them by reminding them that they will be leaving a legacy at AMS.  They laughed when I told them that when they are old and gray, they can come visit their grandchildren at school and say "When I was your age, I helped make that sculpture with MizzSmiff.  Gee, I wonder what happened to her?"

And so, because I am a sucker, I bought some #6  6 /14" chinet plates and we are gonna see what happens...Christmas ornaments, perhaps?

I'll post pictures of our mobiles, our sculpture and our plate experiment when we are done!



  1. They look so amazing! Please post pictures of them when they are hung. :)

    Pinterest is such a wonderful site for lesson plan ideas.

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