Sunday, August 21, 2016

Yummy Cupcakes

It is time again for those yummy Thiebaud Cupcakes!  I had to put a new spin on this lesson when I realized that I was running out of days before the trimester ended.  Instead of having 6 to 8 cupcakes in our composition, we just concentrated on drawing one large cupcake.  These pieces turned out beautiful and I must say, definitely look good enough to eat!

You can check out the original lesson here: Wayne Thiebaud Cupcakes.  The link will give you information about the artist studied, see examples of student work and will allow you to view a great youtube clip I share with my students on artist Wayne Thiebaud.

Student Examples:

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Mixed Breed Animals

Fifth Grade
3 Class Periods

Mixed Breed Animals, Fifth Grade Art Lesson

Day 1:  
To begin this project we examined photographs of mixed breed animals:  Zonkey, Jaglion, Grolar Bear, Leopon, Tigon.  We discussed the parts of each animal that we recognized in each new breed.


Students examined various photographs of different animals that I had on file, ranging from spiders to elephants.  Students were instructed to combine numerous animals together to create a brand new breed in a drawing.

Students were also asked to think about the environment in which they would find this animal.

Day 2 and 3:
Students took the next two to three days to color their artwork using colored pencils or crayons.  Blending techniques were discussed and craftsmanship was emphasized.

Student Examples:

Friday, August 19, 2016

And another year begins...

Let the unpacking begin!  Time to get things organized and ready for a new school year!  I love checking out the new supplies for the new year. :)

Friday, August 5, 2016

Shoe Fish

3 Class Periods

Shoe Fish, Kindergarten Art Lesson

Day 1:
On the first day of this lesson we examine various photographs of fish in the ocean.  We discuss fish anatomy:  eye, dorsal fin, tail, nares, gills, pectoral fin, pelvic fin, mouth and scales.

Students remove their shoe for this lesson and trace the bottom of their shoe three times on their paper.  The paper should be horizontal in front of the student.

Student's tracing shoes for fish body.
We then turn our paper vertical and transform each shoe outline into a fish by naming the parts and drawing that part on each shoe outline.  Magically the shoe becomes a fish!  Students are so impressed by this.

We end the class period by outlining our fish with a black sharpie marker.

Day 2:
On the second day we re-examine the photographs of fish.  We discuss patterns and the colors we see. Students use this class period to color their fish using markers, crayons or colored pencils.

Day 3:
Each child is given a blue piece of construction paper.  I like to offer a variety of blues to give them more say in what their artwork will look like.

A brown piece of paper is then cut and glued along the bottom to create the ocean floor.

Green strips are used to make the sea weed.

We next cut out our fish and glue them in the composition.  I demonstrate to student the concept of overlapping.

More green strips are added for sea weed.  Students are shown how to also create coral from construction paper.

White tempera paint is used to create bubbles, sand is glued to the brown construction paper and a shell is added to the composition with bottle glue as our finishing touches for these masterpieces.

Examples of Student Work:

Friday, July 22, 2016

Piggy Bank Wall Hangings

First Grade
2 Class Periods

Piggy Bank Wall Hangings, First Grade Art Lesson
I came across this lesson in an Arts & Activities magazine.  The author of the article did this project with third grade students.  There was something about these pieces that really caught my eye, but even more so to me was the challenge of seeing if my first grade students were capable of executing such a project.  By breaking the lesson down into more basic steps and using pattern pieces that I designed on my own, this became an exciting new lesson for my first grade students.

Day 1:

To begin this project students were each given a baseball size piece of clay.  Students were shown how to press the clay flat using the the palm of their hand.  We discuss that the clay should be the thickness of a pancake.  Most students at this age can relate to that visual.  As the students work, I go around and double check the thickness of the slab they create.
Student tracing pig face pattern onto their clay.

A pig face pattern is then placed upon the clay and traced out.  The remaining clay is then kneaded and pressed flat once again.  This time the pocket pattern is cut out from the clay.  The scraps left over are used for creating the nose and eyes.
This is a photo of the pocket pattern.  It covers the bottom half of the pig face pattern.
Next, students are shown how to properly slip and score a piece of clay.  This is the first grade my students are exposed to this skill and I spend a great deal of time demonstrating this step and stressing the importance of proper attachment.

As students, slip and score their pieces together, I go around the classroom and stuff the pocket with paper towel.  After the paper towel has been placed, students continue to slip and score the eyes and snout to their piece.
Paper towel placed within the pocket.

A hole is placed near the top of the pig's head for hanging purposes and the ears are turned up a bit to make them look floppy.  The student's name and class code are placed on the back.

Pieces are air dried for a couple of days.  I remove the paper towel and then fire them in the kiln.

Day 2:

On this day, students are very excited to get their creations back.  We discuss in very basic terms about the stages the clay went through in the firing process.

This is the earliest I have ever introduced the concept of glazing with my students.  We discuss the glazing process in very basic terms and I limit the color selection for the students on what color their pig can be.

After projects are glazed they are placed back in the kiln for the last firing.

Student Examples: