Category Archives: Websites

Collaboration + Black History Month


We got a jump on February and celebrating Black History Month with this collaborative project. Students looked at this article on Beanz (a magazine for kids, code, and computer science) about Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan, and Mary Jackson the ladies also known as The Hidden Figures. They are all mathmeticians, engineers, and pioneers who worked for NASA and helped pave the way for other women in math and science, especially women of color. We also watched this great video from Flocabulary and the kids loved it and even requested to hear it again before class was over.

The project is a two class project and each student will be making a piece of a large poster that features the three Hidden Figures along with a quote from Katherine Johnson. I found this poster on Teachers Pay Teachers.

Can’t wait to share the finished poster hanging proudly in the halls of our school!

Tinker Boxes to blow off STEAM!

Tinker Boxes to blow off STEAM!

Oh man, I have been so excited to share these little boxes of fun with my students and with you all. I love hearing all about STEAM and how other regular classroom teachers are integrating art into their classes. I’m all like, “Welcome to my world. I told y’all it was fun over here!” 

So anyway, I wanted to create some projects and lessons where the ultimate goal wasn’t to take a perfect little picture home to mom and dad to hang on the fridge. I wanted the goal to be one of social interaction and creative design. Teamwork and imagination.  It’s all about the process, baby! 

The thing that finally got me moving on my idea about this was our school’s family engagement coordinator brought me some empty sight word flash card boxes. They were pretty small but they were brightly colored and had a cute little yellow handle. There were only 10. What can a teacher of 650+\- do with 10 little boxes? 


I started by finding that bag of random stuff that people give you… you know the one. It’s filled with bits and pieces of scrapbook stuff, toys from kids meals, lost puzzle pieces, marbles, dominoes, etc. Yeah, that one. I divided it up between 6 of the boxes (I have 6 tables in my room) and then set to making some prompts. I know I could throw caution to the wind and let the kids just have a go with no prompts but I want to keep a loose grip on the reins.  I think it would be best to have a common goal at each table so we don’t bicker about step 1. 

There are so many great places to find prompts, resources, and ideas for materials for this sort of thing. Here are a few of my sources: 

A Wrinkle in Tech
Stem of the Month (TPT)
Left Brain Craft Brain
Education Closet
So I put this all together, made my prompts, laminated them, and got ready to try it out…

They LOVED it. Of course they did. I say this not because of my amazing boxes of random crap, but because kids love to tinker and play with little things, and use their imaginations. After they completed the tasks, we cleaned up the boxes and then traded for a new box. We only traded once in the 45 minutes of class. 

I shall not lie to you – there were arguments in some of the groups. Kids have strong opinions about stuff, especially what the propeller of an airplane should be made from. But it was opportunity to work on social skills and learning to talk through problems instead of yelling, whining, and fussing. But that’s what’s so great about STEAM and art class in general: it’s applicable to real life. Problem solving (with people and machines), designing, creating, sharing, giving, taking, directing, leading, choosing a good leader, being a great team player, and the list goes on. 

This was a wordy, lengthy post and I apologize. Here’s some pictures: 

A mini rocket and a big rocket

A large house

A robot 

An airplane! 

Tinyartroom is on Instagram!


After years of bombarding my friends and family on Instagram with tons of photos of my students’ artwork , I finally decided to create an account just for the Tinyartroom. If you are also on Instagram, please follow me at @tinyartroom! (So thankful that name was available. : ) 


AOE Online Conference Recap

AOE Online Conference Recap

Wow! What an awesome experience! I truly enjoyed attending the Art of Education’s Winter Online Conference yesterday. THAT is what effective PD is for me. I rarely attend a meeting at school – even when they are FOR the art teachers – that is useful and encouraging and inspiring. Yesterday was all of those things and the best part – it is a huge best part – is that I was able to do it in the comfort of my own home, in my pjs, while petting my puppies and drinking coffee!
This was my set-up yesterday:

Hi Jessica!
And this is me, with no makeup and in my sweats, super excited about the conference. I did fix my hair, obviously. (Lies.)

The conference was so engaging and I know I could (and still can) go back and watch the videos at my own pace, but I was so into it, I really didn’t move much the whole time. My husband and our friend, Matt, were even putting in my new kitchen floor and I didn’t get up to check on them but once!
Oh, hey, check out my new kitchen floor:

And this, because it’s true:

So back to the conference… I learned so much yesterday! About assessment and integrating with the new common core and that it’s totally okay for my lessons to fail because good teachers fail and great teachers fail a LOT. (Thanks Ian!) ¬†I can’t wait to play some of the games from Art Project Girl¬†and Cassie Stephens was totally entertaining.¬†Pretty much every speaker was relevant and helpful at least in some small way. ¬†Most were big ways. ¬†A few things I’m looking forward to trying are some of the organizing tips, posing projects as questions and asking for solutions in the form of their artwork, creating a few choice-based opportunities, and attempting to organize an art show. Oh, and I’ll definitely be purchasing Songs in the Key of Art!
Time well spent and great information that I can look back on and implement immediately.
Thanks again, Jessica!

Art of Ed Online Winter Art Conference!


Just received my swag bag (box) from Jessica at Art of Ed for being one of the first 1000 to sign up for the online conference that’s happening this weekend, January 25th.
Love all the samples they sent! I especially love the apron from Art to Remember (always need a new apron!) and the “Keep calm and teach art” button.

Who else is signed up?