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ART WITH MS K


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Stamped Sculptural Buildings

This project was a big hit with 1st graders!

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We began by reading the book Iggy Peck: Architect and talking about the job of an architect. Then students practiced drawing different kinds of buildings in their sketchbooks using geometric shapes. The next week, we dipped and stamped various objects in black paint to create big buildings.

The third week, students used crayons to color in their buildings. They also got to visit an enormous scraps box and choose different colors of construction paper scraps to use for their pop-ups. We talked about sculpture and 3D and everyone had to include at least 3 pop-ups on their building.

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Creating pop-ups was a challenge, especially having to incorporate them onto the building in a way that made sense and didn’t just look messy. Most of the kiddos god the hang of folding the paper to create a tab on which to put the glue. They really came out great!

 

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Monochromatic Value Scale House Weaving Texture Landscapes

I had trouble coming up with a simple title for this project because it was so involved and included so many different standards, concepts, and techniques.

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Teacher Sample

On the first day, we used my Value Scale Handout to practice mixing tints and shades. Students also got to look at the “recipe” for the colors by playing the popsicle game.

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The next week, each table chose a primary or secondary color to use to create a value scale. Students used forks to scratch texture into their paper. For the third week, students chose a piece of construction paper that matched their value scale to create a monochromatic artwork. They used crayons and texture mats to create more visual texture.

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The first step of building the landscape was to fold the value scale like a brochure an cut it into thirds.

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One of those rectangles was cut as a wavy line to create the “hills” that the house is tucked into.

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The other two rectangles were cut in half. I showed students how to create a warp and a weft and they chose papers that had a lot of contrast to weave. I showed the kids how to draw “lollipops” and told them to cut on the line and stop at the pop. This ensured that they had a decent warp that they could weave the weft pieces into. I also advised the kids to weave from the back since the lines were easier to see.

That was about as far as we got in one day. The next time we met, students cut out a roof, a chimney, and details for the sky.

Third graders will get to choose between these and their O’keeffe flowers to present in the art show in December. 🙂


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Clay Houses

This project was inspired by a version done in summer camp this past summer.

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We began by reading the delightfully illustrated story Home.

Students were inspired by the different homes in the story to sketch their own dwellings.

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On the first clay day, we rolled out a slab and used texture mats and other tid bits to create textures. Students cut the outline of their houses as well.

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The second clay day*, we added details by using pinch, slab, and coil method. Students were encouraged to personalize their houses with details like their address number and other personal things. After a bisque fire, we glaze.

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When the houses emerge from the inferno a second time, they are shiny and bright!

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A Japanese temple:

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A watermelon house:

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Kremlin inspired:

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A castle:

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A rainbow house:

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A tall house:

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The Leaning Tower of Piza:

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A tree house:

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A colorful castle and a wooden house:

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Pokeball houses:

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A dragon on a castle:

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Hooray for houses!

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*I really like to give my students the chance to use clay more than one day. This is important because many of them only get the chance to touch clay once a year and since it is such a special experience I want them to get a chance to use the material for more than just 45 minutes. This can make storage a little challenging but it is worth it for the students to get the exposure to creating 3D shapes and forms.


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Printed Neighborhood

This project was inspired by Mrs. Knight’s Smartest Artist’s City Prints. I loved the component of students getting to trade their prints!

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The first day, students looked at the artwork of Friedensreich Hundertwasser and used his architecture and designs as inspiration to sketch their own whimsical buildings and houses. After choosing their favorite sketch, students drew it with a ballpoint pen onto styrofoam. They had the opportunity to print as many times as they wanted on any color of paper they wanted. The process was pretty fun!

When all of the prints were dry, the buildings were cut out and students could trade with their friends to create a landscape collage. I am enamored by the talent of these kiddos! 🙂

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They picked out a colorful background and used Art Stix to add details.

 

 


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Analogous Cityscapes

5th graders are well into this project and I decided to change things up a bit from last year. Instead of using tissue paper to add color to the cityscapes, students were allowed to use a variety of art media. I wanted to make it a little more open ended/constructivist  and let them choose their method of creation so they could pick from colored pencils, crayons, water colors, and markers. They mixed colors and media to create an analogous colored city. I am so impressed with their creativity and hard work! The best part about this project is that it is only half way done because it is so involved and inclusive of themes, techniques, and media. However the city scape portion could be a finished product on its own.

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The next step will be the graffiti word and a printed brick wall to stay tuned 🙂

 


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Italy and Greece

Tomorrow is the first teacher workday for the 2015-2016 school year. That means that it is time for my summer-minded brain to get on board the Back-to-School train. This is easier said than done as I have had the great pleasure and fortune of being able to travel this summer. I went to cities near and far and just returned from an incredible trip to Italy and Greece. If you follow me on Twitter you have seen many of these pictures already but I wanted to put the story all together here on the blog.

This trip was months in the making and was made possible by a very detailed (possibly too detailed) google doc and strict savings plan. It was absolutely incredible to see works of art that I have grown up learning about and teach my students about. There is something very surreal about being surrounded by ruins or frescos that are thousands of years old, it makes you feel connected to humanity in the past, present, and future. This was the second time I have been out of the country and I was just as enchanted and inspired.

So with that in mind I present to you my journey abroad!

We began in Milan. Milan is a modern and clean European city that has more contemporary architecture than architecture of antiquity. However there is a magnificent Duomo cathedral in a Gothic style! This building was enormous and so intricately detailed.

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I loved riding the hop-on-hop-off bus in Milan which included an audio tour describing some of the sights.

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The next stop was Monterosso al Mare, one of the cliff towns of Cinque Terre. A friend recommended me to go here and after watching Rick Steves I was sold!

I can only describe Monterosso as magical with its lovely beaches:

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Charming town:

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Splendid views:

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and the BEST pesto I have ever had:

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I went on an amazing hike from one town to the next which led through winding vineyard hills and cliffs overlooking the sea:

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The next stop on the trip was Florence. A tour through the Tuscan countryside was first up on the agenda.

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Walking around the city of Florence was so much fun, I even stumbled across an exhibit featuring paintings and sculptures of Salvador Dali inspired by the poetry of Dante.

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The Duomo in Florence is astounding:

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Near the famous Ponte Vecchio bridge there is a hidden alleyway filled with interesting graffiti:

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The bridge itself is magnificent with its crowded street filled with shops selling gold and jewelry.

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The leather market nearby is also quite an experience:

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While in Florence I had the chance to visit the Boboli Gardens, part of the Pitti Palace. The garden has many sculptures of mythology and an excellent view overlooking the city.

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After Florence, we headed to the coast for Sorrento. Sorrento is famous for its lemons and coastal fun. The town was charming with shops, restaurants, and small churches.

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The best part of Sorrento was a boat tour to the nearby island of Capri. We got to see the famous lagoons and grottos and float once again in crystal blue Mediterranean water.

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After Sorrento, we travelled to Rome. Rome is a city of mighty magnificence. Everything there is massive and impressive and symbolic. There are sculptures in every plaza that have stories and histories. Just walking through the streets you can truly feel the splendor of one of the greatest cities the world has ever known.

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The magnificence wouldn’t be complete of course without a trip to the Colosseum! Being inside and getting to walk upon and touch ancient stones was so impressive.

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We paid a visit to the Pantheon next and marvelled at the great condition it remains in. Looking up inside you can see the domes roof with a hole in the middle. The design was stunning!

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The Vatican was another stop not to be missed. These pictures really do not capture how completely gigantic this building is.

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There was so much amazing art inside from cultures all around the world especially Greece and Egypt.

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Every surface was decorated with vibrant frescos and every ceiling was sculpted with ornate details.

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My favorite part of course was the modern art collection including Matisse and Dali!

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The very best part of going to the Vatican was climbing the 551 steps to the top of St. Peter’s Basilica. The climb was exhausting and difficult – we spiraled up and up and up through tight steep stairs until we finally emerged high above Rome and looked upon the magnificent city. What a view!

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Leaving Rome marked the end of the Italian portion of the journey and the beginning of the adventures in Greece. We started out on the island of Santorini, famous for its beaches and sunsets. The appropriately named Black Sand Beach was a rocky shore of volcanic stones.

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The sunset was breathtaking and a true masterpiece of the natural world.

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The island is covered in buildings made of white stone and there are many shops including a wonderful pottery studio with some of the nicest and more talented artisans I have ever met!

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The appropriately named Red Beach is a sight to behold with its red stones and rocky shore:

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I haven’t been everywhere yet but I am certain that Santorini is one of the most beautiful places on Earth! From this paradise we travelled inland to Athens. I was so excited to see Athens because I teach my 3rd graders about The Parthenon and couldn’t wait to see the building in real life. So first thing we headed up the hill to the Acropolis.

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From the top of the Acropolis you can look out onto all of Athens and Mount Olympus. It was a spectacular view!

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Being in front of the Parthenon was a very meaningful experience for me. I was of course impressed by all of the great landmarks in Italy but there was something about seeing this original structure marking the glory of the ancient Greeks that struck a chord for me.

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After the descent back down to street level, we visited the Acropolis museum. The museum was beautiful and it was so cool to see so many of the ancient adornments and sculptures up close.

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The next stop in Athens was the original modern Olympics Panathenaic stadium from 1896. It was really neat!

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Then we went down the street and made it just in time for the famous changing of the guard. The was the guards moved and dressed was so bizarre and intriguing!

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We got to do another hop-on-hop-off bus tour which was a grand way to see Athens. The trip ended with a glorious rooftop view of the acropolis at sunset.

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This trip was an incredible experience, I learned so much about structures and art that I have only ever seen in pictures. I am excited to bring this experience back as an influence in my teaching. It is hard to believe that summer is already over!

I’ll post some pictures of my classroom sometime soon as I get it prepared for students. I have a few neat new things I am excited to implement and share. Here’s to a great summer and a great upcoming school year!

❤ Ms. K

 


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Collaborative Community Sculptures

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Thank you to my art teacher friend Noelle for the inspiration for this project!

I am all about some collaboration this year! I think projects with collaborative group work really help to build character development and teach real-world communication skills. Anyway, for this project we started off using Google Earth on ipads to research buildings in our community or places that are interesting.

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Students were allowed to choose their own groups and they got together to decide which buildings to create and who would do what. They were pretty much welcome to use anything they wanted in the art room (within reason) to make their communities but they had to have a road to connect everything and at least some elements that were 3D. They used foam, pipe cleaners, wire, phone books, maps, cardboard, scraps, paint, markers, poster board, tape, and any other odds and ends they wanted.

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^ Check out that White House! ^

 

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^ A Soccer Field ^

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^ The Statue of Liberty ^

 

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^ This student loves outer space and built NASA with a rocket launching! ^

 

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^ The Magic School bus ^

 

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^ This student made a house for each member of her group 😀 ^

 

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^ Pipe Cleaner Tree ^

 

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^ The foil building in the top right is a Starbucks ^

 

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This project spanned several weeks. The last day was used for a walk-around critique. Students were responsible for completing a critique sheet about their own work as well as their classmate’s.

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The “Glow” is something the group did well and the “Grow” is something they can improve for next time. I love when kids write stuff, it is hilarious! (And good practice for testing and life in general)


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Graffiti Cityscapes

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The inspiration for this project came from Mrs. Kim at Art in the Big Green Room! We began by looking at pictures of cityscapes and skylines on iPads.

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Students sketched their designs and transferred them to the top half of a 12×18 paper. They could use inspiration from real cities or make up their own.

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They traced their design with sharpie and used tissue paper and water to add colors. I love this method of “painting!” Originally they were going to paint with tints and shades of tempera but they were so intent on detailed cityscapes that a Plan B needed to be devised so their lovely details did not become muddled messes.

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Whilst digging through my Mary-Poppin’s-Bag-Like supply cabinets, I found some practically never before used metallic colored pencils. And who doesn’t like a bit o’ sparkle?! Students who finished their tissue paper early could use the colored pencils for more details.

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Next, we talked about graffiti. I have done a graffiti project with 5th graders for the past couple of years and this was a great update to that project! Students wrote their name or a school appropriate word in graffiti style typography. They traced it with sharpie and used liquid water colors to add color. They cut out their words to be glued to the “wall”

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The brick wall was created by printmaking**. Students carved a brick pattern into styrofoam and used brayers and paint to print the wall. They rolled brick colored tempera paint and printed their bricks 4 times onto the big paper.

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Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy!

I think these turned out phenomenally, I am really proud of the stamina and perseverance 5th graders showed during this project. (Jeez, I make it sound like they went through some harrowing event, its only elementary art!) But this was actually pretty challenging and rigorous what with all of the different concepts and mediums. I think next year I might step it up even more and throw in some color scheme restrictions to hit a few more standards. As one of my very vocal kindergarteners said the other day, Check this out, dude! 

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**Now, I really, really, really, REALLY hate printmaking (maybe even more than weaving!) I think it is irrelevant in an age where you can press a button and literally print infinite amounts of images (at least until the CMYK runs out.) I think that the dazzling magic of creating multiple images is lost on younger generations. I believe that there are better artforms that will engage and inspire my students. Also, I just don’t really like it that much, it takes waaaay too much time.

This year I am challenging myself to get out of the box of “multiple prints of whatever blah blah” projects and come up with more interesting ideas for printmaking that do not necessarily just showcase printmaking but rather incorporate it into a mixed media type of project. So this is the first solution I came up with on How To Not Take 8 Weeks To Complete A Printmaking Project. The next one is an amazing 4th grade project that is currently in the works! So stay tuned 🙂


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Ndebele Houses

To continue our unit on architecture, Kinders created paper bag houses inspired by This Project. I was super stoked to research the Ndebele people of Africa for this sculptural kindergarten project. The geometric, colorful designs are so cool and the kids were as drawn to them as I was. (Get it? Drawn? Because of art class??????)

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Anyhow, they thoroughly enjoyed learning all about Africa and the designs of the Ndebele through Ndebele Buildings << its a PowerPoint. They were so impressed by all of the lines and shapes and were inspired to create their very own on white paper bags. They used black crayons for the outlines and tempera paint to fill em’ up with color.

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Drying them on the drying rack was kind of crazy but clothes pins made it work.

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The next week, kinders cut and glued colorful construction paper to create a roof, windows, and doors. What a colorful neighborhood of houses!

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Architecture Blueprints

The idea for this project came from Mrs. Knight’s Smartest Artists. Kinders became architects in the art room and learned all about designs, shapes, and stamping. 002 (3) We began by sketching buildings, houses, and skyscrapers. A big thank-you shout out to my dad who is an architect for donating “blueprints.” I was informed that architects no longer design on blue paper due to the chemicals and the fact that in 2014 there is such a thing as technology to do that sort of thing. My dad gave me tons of awesome building plans to show the kids. 013 They looked through books from the media center to get inspiration for their buildings. 006 007 005 004 002 003 015 The next week, we printed by stanmping white shapes on blue paper. It was a delightful mess! 005 (2) To wrap up the project, kinders used tempera cakes to paint their buildings. 003 (5) 003 (4) 001 002 (4) 003 (3) 004 (3) 005 (4) 005 (3) 004 (4) 006 (2) 006 (3) 007 (2) 008 (2) 011 007 (3) 020 019

The theme of architecture will take us into our next unit of sculptural houses 🙂