Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Bookmarking with ICyte

 I love, love, love looking for art ideas on the internet, especially blogs.  My only problem....I can't keep track of all the good ideas.  This is especially tricky with blogs when they are constantly being updated.  I have a solution!   In my technology class one of my colleagues presented on the bookmarking website ICyte.  This site is free to educators and allows you to bookmark a page just how it is at the time you viewed it.  If the page changes, you still have the original saved.  Also, you can make folders aka "Projects" and add tags.

Here is a screen shot of my ICyte page....

I hope this will be helpful!

Oh and I used Jing to take the screen shot (another cool tool).

Chinese Exchange Lesson, Part 2 (My Students)

In my last post I shared some of the beautiful pictures that I received from students in China.  My students attempted to “read” the paintings and learn about Chinese kids.  100_5872
Next, my students created their own pictures to share with 3rd graders in China.  We discussed ideas they could share about their life in the U.S.  They were allowed to choose their medium.  My only main requirement was that their picture “speak” to the Chinese students through the visual language of art.
I really enjoyed seeing all my students different ideas.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Chinese Art Exchange, Part 1 (Chinese Students)

   This year my 3rd graders are participating in a Chinese Art exchange sponsored by the local 4-H (through MSU).  I was excited for my students to get this opportunity, because it correlates well with our focus on Art Around the World.  I received a few paintings created by elementary age Chinese children to view with my classes.  I was very impressed with the pictures.  Here are the examples….

This first painting was created by a 10 year old boy. I love the stylized bunny on the rainbow.
8 years old
This picture is titled Hide and Seek.
7 years old
The Harvest, 7 years old
I love this painting of kittens.  The title is Brothers.  Believe of not, this painting was done by a 5 year old. 

     My students and I discussed how art is a visual language.  We do not verbally speak the same language  as these Chinese students, but we can still “read” their picture.  We discussed similarities and differences that we might have.  For example, when I showed the painting Hide and Seek, I asked the students what was going on in the painting (I didn’t tell them the title).  Being that many of my students live on farms, they instantly deciphered the corn and the game the kids were playing.  Next, I asked how many kids have played hide in seek in a cornfield, and several kids raised their hands.  Just by looking at this painting, we were able to infer that we have something in common.  Isn’t art a beautiful thing!!!!

    After we looked at these paintings, we discussed what we wanted to “tell” Chinese students about our lives.  I will share some of my students works in my next post.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Pencil Sharpener Problems... Could Use Advice!

As art an art teacher I go through tons of pencils with my students.  It is very important to have a good sharpener.  Every morning I sharpen the pencils in the  "Bad" bucket and put them in a "Good" bucket.  However, yesterday my sharpener died.....
I took it home hoping my husband could fix it, but he did not have much luck.  He thinks the motor is a goner.  I am really bummed because I bought this sharpener at the beginning of the school year and it had been working great.  I really liked it because it sharpened pencils pretty quickly and stopped once sharp.  

So....I am wondering what sharpener I should get next?  Do you have a suggestions for a reliable sharpener?  I am tempted to buy another one of these because I can get it cheap in the bid catalog (around $20), but don't want it to die on my again.  It is an X-acto School Pro.  

Thanks for any advice you can offer me :)

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Penguin Prints

I always seem to be looking for lessons to do with my 1st graders.  I was looking through my book 365 things to make a do and stumbled upon cute fingerprint penguins.  I decided to use the penguins for a lesson.

Fist I read the story, A Penguin Story.  It  is about a penguin looking for color other then blue, black and white. 

Next, the students picked a 9x12 background color (I gave them purple, blue and orange to choose from).  We used white paper to rip the ice glaciers for the penguins habitat.  We looked at photos of different penguins too.  I was impressed that some of the kids knew all about penguins.  More than me!
Then I demonstrated how to make a penguin by stamping their thumb(body) and forefinger(head).  The kids used white paint and Q-tips to add snow and the white for the body.  We then used oil pastels for the feet.
On the next class, we finished the face and added details.  I let them use sharpie for the eyes, but made it very clear that sharpie can not touch the oil pastels.  Once the sharpies were put away they added beaks, and other extras.  One of my students came up with the idea to add the yellow feathers for the Macaroni penguin.  Kids always amaze me!
I love the ides these students had.  The penguin stuck in the igloo is too funny!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Monet Mixed Media Masterpieces

      I have been having camera issues lately, so I have not been staying on track with what is going on in my classroom.  So….I thought I would share a lesson I did a few years ago with a 2nd/3rd class and then last year at my current school with 4th grade. 

    My first art job was teaching at a school that used the High Scope Philosophy of teaching.  In a High Scope classroom Active Learning is very important.  Students are given choices in their learning.  I found that this philosophy worked well in the art room and fostered creativity. 

    For this Project I introduced students to Monet’s waterlily paintings.  (If any one know how to share PPT on blogs I would be happy too.  I have lots of PPT that go with my lessons).  After looking at Monet’s art we used bleedable tissue paper and cover a 12x18 piece of paper with tissue paper and water.  The next class we took the tissue off and had a really neat background. 

   Then I showed students the above poster.  I told them that their project had to have the following elements: A waterlily, lily pad, something that popped off the page, and supporting details (grass or water detail ).  The students got to choose how their materials. 
Below are some different student interpretations….


Monday, February 7, 2011

Would you buy a poster???

 If you have read my previous posts about James Rizzi, you know that he is my favorite contemporary artist to teach.  My students adore his colorful paintings.  The only problem that I have encountered is that is hard/ impossible to find posters of his work.  I was talking with Henry today, and he said they would make them if people would buy them.  So my question to you, my fellow art teachers....Would you buy a James Rizzi Poster ????  Please leave me a comment.  Thanks!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Nesting Doll Creations

  Third graders continue to learn about art around the world and our latest stop on the map was Russia.  I was excited about this project because I have a collection of Matryoshka (mah-tree-YOSH-kah) aka Russian Nesting Dolls, that I wanted to share with my students. 

First, we looked at several different nesting dolls to get ideas.  Then I did a demo on the board showing simple steps to create the dolls. I modified a lesson from Deep Space Sparkle.  Check out Patty’s PDF Lesson Art From Around the World.  This lesson has a nice step-by-step handout, which I used with my students. 

  The students drew their first doll on 12X18 tag board  and then outlined with Sharpie.   Once they were done outlining, they erased their pencil lines and colored with markers. 
After their first doll was created, students made smaller versions.  I laid out different size tracers for the heads in descending order.  Students created smaller dolls, depending on time that was permitted (For example a snow day allowed one of my classes to only create one).  When dolls were completed, they were cut out and glued on a background. 
Students could stick to the more traditional doll design or come up with their own.
This student dressed her dolls in winter gear.  She made seven!

I also shared this video with my students….
UByK - "Matryoshka" Official Video [stop e-motion animation mix]

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Silly Surrealism…

This is a fun one day cooperative project that I did with 2nd graders earlier this school year.  The lesson came from the book Imagine That!: Activities and Adventures in Surrealism.
Each student received a pre-folded 12x18 paper.  They wrote their name on it and were allowed to draw any kind of head in the top section.  They were then told to make the neck go slightly into section 2 and fold their section down.  Then they passed to the student next to them. The process was repeated for section 2 (torso and arms) and 3 (legs).  Then the paper was returned to the original owner. If there was extra time The kids names their creation and created a background (sorry I don’t have pictures of those). 
The kids enjoyed the project and it was nice to do something collaborative for a change.
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