Wow, it’s been a long time and I feel terrible about that. I’ve gotten quite a few new followers since my last post and y’all are probably wondering why in the world you bothered. Well, the holidays were rather busy – busier than normal – and I got a new phone and haven’t had access to my old photos that I took of my holiday art and boards. I think I did share some on Instagram before I got my new phone so if you are an Insta-user, check out tinyartroom there.
So, right before our Winter break, I started all my classes on their Art to Remember projects. A few grades finished and a few are finishing this week. All of the projects are turning out great and I have two new Art to Remember projects that I’m trying out this year.
Kindergarten was one of the classes that finished before the break so I was looking around on Pinterest and my favorite art blogs (see the blogroll to the right) to see what I could find for them that would ease us back into the swing of things. For some of these kids (and me) I feel like it’s a second First Day of school so we need to tiptoe back into it.
I found this awesome project over at this cute little French art blog called Le Petites Têtes de L’Art which Google translated to “Small Heads of Art” so… let’s just stick to stumbling over the French pronunciation. Anyway – the kids loved making this so much. At the end of class, I asked them what they liked so much about it. They all said some version of “I liked the scribbling” and “I like cutting the paper.” So, basically they liked being given a goal but allowed to go about achieving it how they wanted. Ahhhh… choice based art. I promised them we would do more of this. 🙂
For now, check out the results of today’s work:
Kinders started working on some Spring-inspired pictures this week. We looked at some of Henri Rousseau’s artwork and lots of pictures of beautiful flowers. We also discussed our favorite bugs/spiders/snakes. We talked about how to completely fill our paper with objects, even if that meant that some of the object wouldn’t be seen. This week we are drawing the plants and flowers. Next week we will add the magnifying glass with our favorite bug. We used construction paper crayons for this project, with some help from regular crayons inside the magnifying glass.
(For real this time!)
So, I know I joked on our pitiful snow day but it did actually snow that night! We had a great time waiting and watching. I had just as much fun with the first graders, drawing self portraits in the snow!
Originally I had planned for this to be a directed drawing. But after the art conference I attended, I decided to have a go with asking the kids a question and their response is the artwork. After discussing self portraits with them, I asked them, “if you drew a self portrait in the snow, what would it look like?” They did such a great job with this! There were kids making snow angels, some having snowball fights, some riding sleds, and some up close and personal portraits of sweet smiles and ear muffs.
We used construction paper crayons on black paper.
We also took time at the end of class to point out some great things about each others artwork. The kids had some very thoughtful points to make and they all enjoyed it.
And check out some real snow pictures!
2014 is the Year of the Horse and the Chinese will be celebrating on January 31st. Several of my classes will be creating Chinese New Year inspired art over the next couple of weeks. I’ll post some examples of their projects here. I have step-by-step photos for some of the projects as well.
Kinders will be creating some simple dragon puppets and working on fine motors skills and cutting some pretty intricate lines. They will also be using the accordion fold to make the torso of their dragon.
First graders are also making dragons but they are making their own heads and creating the body out of a paper chain.
With Third Graders, after discussing Chinese New Year traditions vs. American New Year traditions, I give them a piece of paper and we draw dragons but they don’t know that they are drawing dragons at first. I just give them instructions to draw a triangle at the top of the paper, then draw a triangle at the bottom. Connect the two triangles with a curvy line. After we draw in the details of the head they will guess what we are drawing and then I can show them my finished example. We discuss pattern and they have to create the body using only lines, shapes, and colors in a pattern symmetrically on each side of the center line of the dragons body. They can add wings and a background as well. I was really pleased to see some of them using other objects we had discussed, like the red lanterns.
Second graders will be doing some paper lantern art, found on Pinterest, but it only leads to a picture. Let me know who I can give credit, if you know!
And fourth grade will be making some Chinese scroll paintings in the next couple of weeks.
Looking forward to seeing all of these awesome projects hung together!
First graders have been working on gingerbread houses. I have lots of examples but they are all in different stages of completion.
So it begins, the annual march to make some extra money for my classroom. The actual fundraising will not start until Spring but the making of the artwork starts NOW! 🙂 I’m spreading it out this year in an attempt to not be quite so harried about it. First grade is going first and are working on their owl pictures. These turned out amazing last year and I had so many compliments from parents and staff that I thought it would make a great choice.
Check out some of the works in progress!
4th grade Zentangle Owls
I saw this post listed on the Freshly Pressed page of WordPress. I was immediately drawn to it because of the bright and shiny picture of the “magical” 64 color box of Crayola crayons. The difference between me and the writer is that I am a color-order nazi and would rearrange my crayons into rainbow order. It never even occurred to me to leave them in the order that they were sent in. I also have a “Mine” and “Their’s” supply of pencils, crayons, markers, etc. available for students. In one of my classrooms, I have a closed-off office and can keep my supply safely on my desk. In my other classroom, I have to always have the eagle eye on my desk to make sure they don’t use my pencils with erasers still on, my non-dried out markers with the caps all on the correct colors, and my color pencils with their carefully sharpened points. I try to instill in my students the ability to care for the materials, even though they don’t belong to only themselves. I always praise the students that I see caring for our materials and fixing those markers with the wrong color caps. How is that not a good lesson to teach??? Take care of your stuff and it will last much much longer!!! (Duh.)
The Crayon Facist
Why do I feel like it should still be December 27th? Is time really speeding up? I know I’m not the only one who feels this way as I had a 5th grader tell me yesterday that he couldn’t believe how fast 2011 went by and that it was already 2012. It’s always good to have your life observations confirmed by a 5th grader, ha! Another thing I realized is that I have totally slacked on the blog posts! I should have gotten caught up on this over the break but chose to lay on the couch, reading books and eating cheese and grapes like I am Socrates or something. Whatever, I enjoyed it. BUT, we are back to work and my days as a lazy philosopher are over. It’s time to suck it up and get on top of some posts. I have lots of pictures and ideas to share so I will *hopefully* be publishing lots of posts in the next few days.
To start off the Posting Extravaganza of 2012, I will share some artwork that my 5th and 2nd graders did. 2nd grade discussed how to show people in motion and since it is January and you have all of that resolution stuff going on (and I’m a runner) I decided to show them some Jacob Lawrence Olympic artwork as well as some other “runner art.” I put up a couple different photos of runners from different angles and had them pick one to draw. Here are a couple of cute ones.
The 5th graders did some “Fast, Fancy Feet” and had the joy of taking off their socks and shoes to trace their feet. I asked them to use color to show energy and life and movement in a still object. I really liked some of their results!
Call me crazy… Call me brave… I’ll let you know how I feel when it’s over. 🙂 I am going to attempt to create some crayon drip paintings with several grades in the coming weeks. I will add pictures as we progress! I found this idea on Mrs. Picasso’s Art Blog and she gives credit to first seeing the idea at this Etsy Store. Let me know if you attempt this!!!
I’ve pretty much decided that I will not be doing this project again unless I start teaching middle school or high school. The kids really do love it but it has been so time-consuming. I only have one heat gun and I have to stand right there with them while they do it so they don’t catch their papers on fire! I think this would be a fine project for older kids who can be more independent, but it’s just not working out well with the younger ones.
Here are a couple of finished products that did look good!