Mexican Pottery


Study Mexican pottery and its importance to Mexican culture. Create a basket-weave pot with Crayola® Model Magic.


1. Look at samples and pictures of ancient and contemporary Mexican pottery. Describe the designs and shapes. What modeling techniques do you think were used to construct the pottery? How might these pots have been used?

2. Roll two colors of Crayola Model Magic into two long ropes about 1/2 inch (1.5 cm) pieces. Use a ruler and craft stick to measure and cut each rope into half-inch pieces.

3. Alternate yellow and red pieces in a row. Mold them together in one rope with damp fingers.

4. Carefully coil the rope into a circle about 4 inches (10 cm) in diameter. Continue to coil upwards three times around, getting narrower each time, to form a base. Use fingers to pinch and smooth seams inside the base.

5. Continue to coil above the base in a wider and wider circumferences, pinching and smoothing seams, until all the Model Magic rope is used.

6. Flatten red Model Magic into a thin sheet. Carefully smooth the sheet inside the coiled tureen. Dry 24 hours.

Safety Guidelines

Adult supervision is required for any arts & crafts project. Observe children closely and intervene as necessary to prevent potential safety problems and ensure appropriate use of arts and crafts materials. Some craft items, particularly beads and buttons, are potential choking hazards for young children. Avoid use of such small parts with children younger than 3 years. Craft items such as scissors, push pins and chenille sticks may have sharp points or edges. Avoid use of materials with sharp points by children younger than 4 years. Read all manufacturers' safety warnings before using arts and craft supplies.

Crayola Modeling Materials including Crayola Model Magic®, and Model Magic Fusion™, Crayola Air-Dry Clay, and Crayola Dough—

  • Keep away from open flames. Do not use to make candleholders, hot plates, trivets, or other similar objects that will be used or placed near fire and other heat sources.
  • Do not put in an oven, microwave, or kiln.
  • Do not make into vessels/containers that will hold unpackaged food.
  • The use of modeling material to make items that look like food is discouraged for children younger than age 5 to avoid their confusion with real food.
  • Unless sealed with a water-resistant glaze, do not make projects exposed to or immersed in water, such as boats or outdoor bird feeders. They would disintegrate when exposed to moisture.
  • Crayola Dough—contains gluten (wheat flour) as an ingredient.
  • Crayola Air-Dry Clay, Crayola Model Magic and Model Magic Fusion are gluten-free. However, they are produced on the same machinery as Crayola Dough which does contain gluten. Although the machines are cleaned prior to the start of each production run, there is a slight possibility that trace amounts of gluten from Crayola Dough may be present in the other modeling compound products. For information regarding specific ingredients or allergic concerns, please call our Consumer Affairs department at 1-800-272-9652 weekdays between 9 AM and 4 PM Eastern Standard Time.

Wood—By its nature, wood is rough and may contain splinters or sharp points


  • Children use their problem-solving skills while creating their pottery. How might Mexican potters have solved similar problems?
  • Create a second, original piece of pottery trying new techniques with Model Magic. Use simple tools like rolling pins, combs, and pencils to shape pottery forms.
  • Research various pottery-making methods used in Mexico and elsewhere, both historically and today.
  • Younger children and special needs students may benefit from short practice sessions experimenting with modeling techniques before participating in this activity.

Related Lesson Plans

Lesson Plans

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crayola supplies
  • Model Magic®
household supplies
  • ruler
  • craft sticks
  • container(s) of water



  • Pre-K and Kindergarten
  • Grades 1 to 3
  • Grades 4 to 6
  • Special Needs


  • Math
  • Social Studies
  • Visual Arts


  • 30 to 60 minutes
  • Multiple Sessions


  • Students research and observe Mexican pottery to discover its importance to Mexican culture. Use artifacts as sources of ideas to create replicas.

  • Students use problem-solving skills while using modeling material to create a basket-weave pot.


Research Canada Standards
Research UK Standards
Research U.S. Standards