Tag Archives: art journal

On “The Block” with Romare Bearden


Ahhhh, my first post as a middle school teacher! Pretty exciting. 

My 6th graders are currently working on a collage project with me. We are looking at the master of collage, Romare Bearden and his piece, “The Block.” Their goal was to create their own block out of their everyday experiences and places they go. We don’t live in a huge city so they had to be creative and “collect” the places that are important to them. 

We first did an artist study to learn about Bearden and what influenced him. Then they looked closely at “The Block” on The Met’s website to see all of the amazing details and interactions that Bearden observed and was intrigued with. After inspecting his work, they created sketches of what they wanted to include in their own block. 

We are creating our collages using a 28″X11″ piece of poster board and magazines. I can’t wait to see and share what my talented 6th graders create!


Art Journal: Tree of Life


This will be our last art journal post for a bit. We are taking a break to celebrate the seasons with some larger-scale pieces. For this page, we looked at and discussed many different versions of the Tree of Life/Knowledge before creating our own versions. We started with a background and then painted the tree black. I gave them the full ROYGBIV in paint for them to use for the leaves. I also gave them some sequins and shiny things if they wanted to add some special leaves. They turned out great and these are just a few!



I love how this student used part of the picture in her book as part of her painting!

Art Journal: Printing Techniques

Art Journal: Printing Techniques

The next page of our journal is dedicated to practicing some layering and playing with printing techniques. We painted the page with one primary color and let it dry. For the next class, I’ll set up some different stations with different printing and painting materials like marker caps, bubble wrap, scrapers cut with different designs, etc. when they are finished with the printing, they will each get the quote: Don’t ask yourself what the world needs;
Ask yourself what makes you come alive.
And then go out and do that.
Because what the world needs
Is people who have come alive.
– Howard Thurman

They can cut it up and glue it down how they want and if there is time, use more paint to make it blend in better.

I was inspired by the quote which I found at: http://todreamoutloud.blogspot.com/2009_06_01_archive.html


Art Journal: Dia de Los Muertos

Art Journal: Dia de Los Muertos

Fifth graders are going to turn themselves into calaveras for Dia de Los Muertos. We are starting this week so I’ll post pictures when we are finished. Here’s my example, step by step.

After I took my photo with Photobooth, I cropped it in pretty close, edited it to make it much brighter and then printed it out as a 5×7.

Draw on the colorful decorations. They usually include circles or flowers around the eyes and the holes on the nose like a skull.

After gluing my face into my journal, I used painted paper to make flowers to go around my face. Another option would be a black top hat with a flower in it.

The last step is to use a sharpie – I used a metallic gold because my page was a dark brown – and add lots of designs, kind of like zentangles.


Here are some student examples. I love how they are turning out. Some of them are also learning the valuable lesson of *less is more*.






Art Elements Infographic


Here’s our first entry into our fifth graders art journal. We created an Infographic to showcase our knowledge of the art elements. I found this at artroom104.blogspot.com through Pinterest.