Sunday, October 28, 2012
So I asked, "What species is your fish? How long would it be in real life? What did you like or dislike about this project?" Their responses are really funny (like 6000 feet long eels), but thoughtful. We even had time for critique and sharing at the end. (Nothing makes me a happier art teacher than actual closure and reflective thinking at the end of a lesson! That and a perfectly timed and organized clean-up!)
Great moment number 2: My 4th graders went on a trip to the Philadelphia Museum of Art through their "Art Speaks" program. Prior to them going we had a whole lesson on museum expectations, and I had warned them that I expected a good report from my friends at the museum. On their way to the bus I stood in the hall and gave them a little "I got my eyes on you" stare. I'm not sure how many of them believed me that I had friends at the museum. Turns out one group actually had a friend of mine, and when I facebooked her later, she said they were great! They also returned really excited about their experience, and wrote wonderfully detailed thank you notes for the museum.
Number 3: I had a lot of "presents" this week. My students are applying what they're learning on their own independent work and bringing back things to show me. I love it!
Number 4: I've been hearing some feedback from the other classroom teachers- many of whom have students in our school. Apparently the kids have said some good things about art class and me as their teacher (wheww!). Kids can be pretty tough critics, so I'm glad I pass muster!
Number 5: Normally on Saturdays I spend the whole day down in the basement silkscreen studio at Fleisher teaching my adult and teen classes. This past Saturday, I happened to make it around the building a bit more than usual and was really surprised at how many familiar faces I saw in the studios. There are a lot more of my school students taking Saturday Art Classes at Fleisher than I thought!
I'm a very proud art teacher!
Friday, October 26, 2012
My first graders have just finished a mixed media sea life scene that focused on types of lines. They drew a sea creature, filling it with lots of different lines. Then they made paste paper and dragged combs through it to texturize the background. Finally they collaged all the bits together to make their sea creature hide among some seaweed.
Their collages look great and all very different. These 2 were my favorites!
Wednesday, October 24, 2012
To finish up our lesson we played "compliment tag" where one student is "IT" and has to pay a compliment about another student's artwork, making them the new "IT". They made great, focused comments about specific things they saw in each other's artworks. Next we'll be working on a paper mosaic project to extend the pattern concept to another medium. Our mosaics will have a food theme to align with harvest and Thanksgiving ideas.
Tuesday, October 23, 2012
I'm not sure if this ties in directly with their current math lessons, but it sure doesn't hurt to make explicit cross-curricular connections whenever possible.
Tuesday, October 16, 2012
I just can't get enough of these symmetry name monsters. I managed to work through my pile of work to photograph a little bit this afternoon. Considering that Tuesday is my toughest day with 6 classes, no prep, and after school art club, that's an accomplishment!
I always see my 3rd graders first thing in the morning- and they arrive so fresh and ready for their day. I wish there was some way to see every class first thing- before their days are bogged down by tests, and squabbles, and trooping all over our 3 story building to get to classes. I'm fresher first thing too- no chaos has occurred in the room, no children have broken any rules yet, no projects have gone wrong. It's hard to not let the events that occur in one class spill over into how I deal with the next class. Painting with my Kinders and first graders the last 2 weeks has been rather stressful, as there's always another class ready to walk in the door as soon as I've got them cleaned up. What I wouldn't give for 5 minutes between classes! We'll get into new routines soon. But next year I might hold off on the paint till I know my little ones better, and they get accustomed to art room expectations.
Sunday, October 14, 2012
A little Jasper Johns inspiration led to the first graders' name repetition project. It's fun looking at art with kids and seeing what they notice. They could see the differences in color, and the way Jasper Johns repeated his numbers in a pattern in his big number grids. We started by folding our papers to create a 4x4 grid and traced over the fold lines to make boxes. Next we repeated the letters of our names in the boxes making them big and fat. We also tried to make a warm/cool pattern with the colors of the letters.
All of my classes, except 5th grade have now completed their second project of the year. I've been busy grading work. I'd hoped to get more pictures taken too, but forgot my camera this week. It's a feat to grade, photograph, upload work to Artsonia, and try to hang artwork around the building. Oh yeah, and teach! But I won't complain about a thing- I talked with a middle school art teacher this week from another school and realized how wonderful my school and teaching situation is!!
Friday, October 5, 2012
It's exciting to see some projects get completed! The 3rd graders have been learning about symmetry in a collage project. They wrote their names on a folded piece of paper, then cut around the name to create a unique symmetrical shape. The same process was repeated to make the features. The final touch was adding patterns with crayons around the face and even a background.
With all these classes completing projects I've got some lesson planning to do!!!