Saturday, March 17, 2018

Kindergarten and Andy Warhol's Cats

This was a delightful read for my Kinders who speculated that the Warhol's must have had at least 1000 Sam's living in their home.  They were hysterical with the idea that Hester and Sam might have slept in Andy's wig drawer with all their offspring's and they were sure the wigs must have been an extremely comfortable place to sleep.

So began a Kindergarten lesson on Pop Art, no it's not like popping a balloon, and an introduction to Andy Warhol.

Students followed a directed draw to create this sweet little composition featuring a cat in a wig and sometimes with a smaller Sam (kitten) in the background.  Students were encouraged to practice skill and creative embellishment in their work.  Choices in color for the cats were left up to the student's discretion.  Here are a few of the finished projects, definitely worth sharing!!!

Jasper Johns interpretation by 5th grade

 "Alphabet" by Jasper Johns was the piece used for inspiration.  
At a recent professional day experience, our group shared ideas for printmaking.   One of my colleagues shared a variation of this project.  She had planned the project as a color mixing experience for Kinders.  With a twist, I introduced it to 5th grade students who totally enjoyed the color review and the opportunity to add individualized touches to their work. 

Week one student were given tempera colors in the primaries and instructed to paint all the colors of the color wheel.  They were further told they could not mix colors on their pallets but instead had to mix right on the painting surface.  There were not specific instructions as to how the finished work should appear, only that it should be non-representational.
Week two students used tempera in the fluorescent primary colors to mix secondary colors and print using bubble wrap.  They did the mixing right on the bubble wrap.  Very messy, but they all seems to really enjoy the bubble mixing process. (Paint one primary on each end of a strip of bubble, fold and rub the two ends together to mix.)  At this step, they reviewed show colors "work" off one another and were reminded that complementary colors seem to "pop" when used together.  Personal choices were made as to where to place the different color prints.  As they completed this step, drawing paper was used along with any left over paint to practice painting letters and numbers using a flat paint brush.
Week three began with additional practice with the paint brush if students felt it would be beneficial.  They moved on to adding letters and numbers to their paintings.  I was delighted with the variety and the enthusiasm as students moved through this project.

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Covering for Common Planning Time

 This year's schedule looks a little different in my elementary art room.  Because we lost one class in our schedule; we now cover a class each week on a rotating basic.  This allows the classroom teachers a bit of common planning time.  We were given the freedom to handle this extra class time in any way we felt worked better for our curriculum.  After some thought, I knew I didn't want to just continue with the current lesson as that would put that class ahead of the others.  I stumble across a great idea on Art of Education and immediately implemented it for this one time a week space in my schedule.  Here is the link to the article on Art of Education.  Now students are given the opportunity to explore careers that are supported by the Arts.  My students love the freedom to explore on their own and it's a great way to not disrupt my curriculum and instead to enhance it.

Most classes have only visited one time so far this school year and at 
most I will probably see them only twice.  Each time they come, it is fresh and new as they experience a new station.  I have set up six stations.  I initially was afraid too many students might be drawn to the iPad station or the Architect station but have found they are eager to experience them all.  I am evolving with this as well as I think of new ways to build the stations through supplemental materials.  For instance, I just purchased a Sphero ball to attempt so coding and drawing.  I also have one of those cute little trucks that follows a drawn line.  I should mention that I only use the stations for 1st-5th grades,  for Kinders I pull out some manipulations for a bit of Reggio play.  You can see post about my use in the classroom in previous post on my blog like here and here.

 Take a look at the AOE article and explore how you might implement these stations into your art room as well. 

Monday, February 19, 2018

Chameleons in mixed medium

Image resultI'm developing a love for bleeding tissue paper this year.  Seems like each year I get stuck on some medium and explore it unreasonably.  This year it seems to be becoming project with that tissue paper.  Here is the latest, done quite successfully with first grade students.   They drew with a black crayon and then watercolor for the background and the little chameleon was glued on top.  This was a two week lesson.  I was really please with the results.  We also paired this with some factual information about Chameleons found in the book. 

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Miss posted on wrong it is now.

Back at it again!

A Shapescapes Stabile
We just completed week two in my district.  This year is a bit different in that I am seeing Kindergartners right away.  They usually don't attend specialist until they are settled into a school routine.  I saw my first Kinders about an hour after they began their first day of school.  I was really anxious; probably as much as they were about their first day of school.  Much to my surprise, and relief, it went great and I am really enjoying spending time with these littles.  I generally begin my Kinder classes in a Reggio Emilio style of learning for about the first month to six weeks.  Class time begins with a book and then several stations of manipulative are put out for students to use to create.  I stumbled on a post this summer on Facebook demonstrating the use of Shapescapes and I headed right over to Amazon to purchase a set with my kinders in mind.  I have to say, I love these things.  Yes, they were a bit pricey but let me tell you, I will be purchasing another set as soon as I can work it into my personal budget.   When they arrived in August, I immediately put my adult personality aside and jumped right into building some stabiles with the ShapeScapes..  I had a blast.  This week my kinders got a hold of them and I couldn't have been more pleased with the results and their enthusiasm.  I began the lesson by introducing Alexander "Sandy" Calder and reading the book "Sandy's Circus",  We examined a mobile and discovered the differences between mobiles and stabiles.  Then we set to work building.  Here are some of the terrific creations that came out of the lesson.  I promised to let them build again next week.  I'm thinking it might be a while before we tire of these terrific shapes!
Another Shapescapes creation

More Shapescapes

Building stabiles with Legos
More Lego stabiles

Tossed out from a Math program
Good for building in the Art Room!
A find in the bargain bin at Target
One child's building ideas

Same material as about right but a different idea on how to build.

Winter Cardinals

Sharing some watercolor painting done by 4th and 5th grade Art Club members over the past two weeks.  Working toward understanding transparency with watercolors to achieve varying hues from a singular color, watercolor wash, and managing brush use in a more professional way.  They used a tracer to place their bird but the rest of the composition is free hand.  I'm proud of these kids, they worked really hard!

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Norman Rockwell Illustrated Narratives and QR codes

Fifth Grade students investigated the narrative style of the work of Norman Rockwell.  In small groups they worked to "read" select illustrations to determine the messages that were being portrayed.  They were particularly sensitive to details that help to establish time periods and lifestyle clues.  Individually they created their own narrative over the course of several class periods.  Once the illustration was completed, they took their work to the Language Arts teacher where they wrote an accompanying narrative for the illustration.
 As a part of a full school show off night, work was exhibited with QR codes to link the illustrations to the written work.  In the classroom, the written narratives also contained QR codes that linked back to the illustrations.  This was established as a cooperative work between the Art room and classroom teachers.
A previous post along with the lesson plan can be viewed here: