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Clay Modelling Sculpture

2 hour artist workshop for key stage 1 - 5

Focusing on the sculptures and drawings of Barbara Hepworth, pupils explore their ‘pierced’ forms and textures and learn about different materials and techniques used.

Mark-making and recording activities in the galleries will encourage students to observe the works around them, and inform pupils’ ideas for making their own 3D artworks using clay modelling materials and tools.

Delivered by artist Jo Lee

Jo is a multi-media artist who specialises in ceramics and plaster. There are two sides to her work, the sensitive and the silly but ultimately, Jo’s work is driven by the experience of life whether human or imagined: memories, ageing, emotions, relationships and the traces left by their existence.

Take back to school

  • Pupils will create their own clay sculptures and we advise that teachers bring a box to transport the work back to school
  • Your class will receive a certificate of achievement to display at school


Wakefield Schools: £130

Other: £150

Book this workshop

Learning outcomes and curriculum links


Art and Design

  • Learn about Barbara Hepworth’s artwork and contemporary artists
  • Develop drawing techniques and understanding of sculpture
  • Understanding of working with clay
  • Evaluate, analyse and discuss the artwork in the gallery


  • Develop speaking and listening skills by talking confidently in new learning contexts and communicating ideas. Engage in discussion, confidently voice opinions and questions to show understanding


  • Build confidence and resilience in learning outside of the classroom
  • Build self- esteem by sharing opinions and explaining views on the artwork
  • Recognise choices made in a new learning environment
  • Work in small groups as well as individuals
  • Develop critical thinking skills and take part in class discussion


Art and Design

  • First-hand observation of Barbara Hepworth’s artworks
  • Explore ideas and imagination using experience of learning outside of the classroom
  • Develop understanding of contemporary sculpture, artistic process and materials
  • Develop drawing techniques and sculpture making skills using a range of techniques and media


  • Develop speaking and listening skills by talking confidently in new learning contexts, communicating ideas and critical analyse. Engage in discussion, confidently voice opinions and questions to show understanding

Session overview


  • In response to Barbara Hepworth’s artwork, pupils will engage in drawing activities to record process, tools and inspirations
  • Independent and group drawing activities designed to aid closer looking at works of art. This will be used as a stimulus in the  creation of their own clay artworks
  • Word activities will be used to encourage pupils to think about shape, size, texture, colour, line, and make connections between feelings and memories

Learning studios

  • Pupils will create their own 3D artworks in clay using drawings and words gathered, considering the composition of line, form, shape and texture
  • Pupils will be encouraged to problem solve ways to use the material and tools
  • Pupils will arrange their sculptures as an installation, carefully considering placement and layout. A group discussion will be led around the results and what pupils have learned

How can teachers and group leaders help?

Please bring your enthusiasm, be prepared to join in and model good behaviour.

To support activity in the galleries please remind children about our three rules:

  • no shouting
  • no touching
  • no running