Native American Study: Making Clay Bricks

We have been using a lot of Moving Beyond the Page recently.  And for the most part I really like it.  It's great for my active, 9-yo son when the lessons get him outside, or moving his body, or using his hands to do something besides push a pencil.

Today was like that.  We got to enhance our study of the southwest Native Americans by making our own clay bricks.  Fortunately, clay is abundant here in our new NC home!  I felt so lucky that we could walk out into the forest that is our back yard, dig up some clay, mix it with water from the stream that runs through said forest, and have so much fun doing this project without leaving the house!

We found all the clay we needed under this old fallen tree.

My 11yo never misses a chance to get her hands dirty and joined us in the fun.

Is there a more perfect way to spend the afternoon than shaping clay bricks in the forest by a clear stream?  Um, nope!

We used a butter box cut in half as a mold for our bricks.  It worked ok.  I think it would be better to use something a little sturdier.

Here are the first two bricks set out to dry.  We were pretty excited by our product!  I wonder if we could make enough bricks to build that outdoor pizza oven we've been dreaming about....