Sorry I'm late here.
High School Teacher:
First day. Simple introductions followed by things they need to bring by the end of the week (spray bottles, clear plastic, stamping tools, old gift cards to be made into tools, etc.) a studio tour and then....
I have four tables in my room. Each table has 20 pounds of clay in the middle. I tell them the table will have 1 minute to develop a stategy and then the next four minutes to build the tallest tower of clay. Believe it or not they have reached 43"!
It's SO MUCH fun to watch everyone get into the clay on day one. That's quite a bit to go over on the first day but we manage to get it all in.
I wouldn't try this 8th grade or lower but it's really a fun, uncomplicated, activity that even my returning students look forward to.