Please Don't Eat the Artwork

ART WITH MS K


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Geometric Hearts

This lesson is inspired by Deep Space Sparkle. I fell in love with this project the moment I saw it. I wanted to turn it into a one day lesson for students to complete right before Valentine’s Day so I decided to have students make theirs very small.

We used a 4×4 piece of paper, a heart template (made from poster board), a ruler, and colored pencils. First we followed the Deep Space Sparkle directions to section off the heart into polygons and triangles to make it looks like a gemstone. 4th graders are learning about angles in math so this was a great connection.

Then students used colored pencils to color in their designs. These are so cute and they were the perfect little Valentine’s Day project!

❤ Mrs. Katzin


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Easy-Peasy One Day Rainbows

Here is another easy-peasy one day project perfect for the end of the year. This one comes from @2Art.Chambers on Instagram.

I’m just gonna do a quick sidebar to say that I am LOVING how much art teachers share on Instagram & Twitter. When I first started teaching seven years ago (!!!) there were not too many resources other than old textbooks and Pinterest for us art teachers. Now I am inspired every single time I scroll through my feed and I am very grateful that folks share so much, it is always exciting to try a new, fresh project. Thanks Art Tachers! ❤

Examples Made by Me

We started by reading the story Ava and the Rainbow (Who Stayed) – which is just precious by the way – and talking about the colors in the rainbow. We used the traditional colors + magenta because it looks pretty 🙂

I played around with a few examples and ultimately decided to have the students paint the rainbows backwards simply because I have more purple paint than red paint so the red needed to be smaller. Sometimes ya gotta do what ya gotta do!

We painted these step-by-step starting with magenta and then moving on to red, orange, yellow, green, turquoise, indigo, and violet. When students completed their rainbows, they could add details in the middle.

This would be a great school-wide project to display but with less than a week of the school year remaining, these are going straight home. I really enjoy the tessellation-like effect of them all together though, they are giving me the same vibes as the collaborative quilt we did earlier this year!

❤ Mrs. K


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Donuts in a Day

This one day lesson was perfect for a filler project at the end of the school year. I love teaching step-by-step drawing lessons because students feel more empowered when they can be successful. Going step-by-step is a great way to make sure everyone is flowing through the drawing process smoothly.

We began by following this guide for drawing a donut:

Students traced over their lines with Sharpie and then colored the sprinkles with Crayola Twistables. Then, they painted over their design with watercolor paint.

This project was great for 2nd-5th graders. I love how unique each one is, just like my amazing students!

❤ Mrs. K


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Pattern Hearts

This was a fun one day project that all ages enjoyed. We started off by tracing 3 hearts onto a piece of 6×9 paper. The hearts were made using the die-cut machine with poster board.

Students filled each heart with patterns and traced over their lines with sharpie. Then, they used watercolors to paint their designs.

This easy-peasy one day lesson was perfect for the end of the school year.

❤ Mrs. K


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Paper Snow Globes

These little paper snow globes are the perfect one-day project right before winter break! The inspiration form this comes from Pinterest 🙂

We read the book Snowmen at Night. Students were inspired to create different scarves and hats for their snowman and they also noticed how shading a circle made it have form.

We created the designs step-by-step:

The kids did a fab job with these, almost everyone was successful and ended up with something they were super proud of. I don’t usually do such “crafty” projects but every once in a while (especially the week before winter break) it can be fun!

Happy Holidays!

❤ Mrs. K


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Activities for the Last Day of Art Class

It can be a challenge to plan the last few weeks of art lessons. You want to do something that is engaging and educational but fun. It is the end of the year after all! This year I did a bunch of different one or two day lessons and then on the very last day of art I had students do Genius Hour or The Day the Crayons Quit. I wanted to create a blog post about these and some of my other favorite last day lessons.

Water Graffiti
I have talked about this one before. At my old school, I had an enormous and mostly empty courtyard outside of my classroom. It was perfect for doing Water Graffiti. Basically, we would take big cups of water and paint brushes outside and paint with water. This was not only exceptionally fun but also provided a nice little science lesson about evaporation and the water cycle.

I would give challenges of who could paint the biggest ____ or who could work together to create a ______, who could write the entire alphabet without it evaporating. I haven’t done this in a few years but it is super fun on the last day, especially if it is nice out!

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The Dot
This activity is perfect if the weather isn’t great or if you have a group that you just don’t  trust to paint outside with water. I read The Dot to the class and put big pieces of butcher paper on each table. Students use a variety of art supplies to create their own dots. Usually there is an episode of Magic School Bus playing too 🙂

The Day the Crayons Quit
I will never tire of reading The Day the Crayons Quit to students. It is hilarious and so is the sequel. We begin by reading one or both and then do a step-by-step to create the crayon craft. This project is definitely more on the crafty side which I often try to avoid but it is so cute that I deem it OK for the last day of art class. I did this project earlier this year with the classes I had on Halloween because it was also Book Character Day. It is a perfect one day lesson for an exciting school day!

Each kiddo gets a popsicle stick and we create the crayon details, the name of the crayon color, and the face with sharpie. Then, they color it in. Next, students pick a pipe cleaner that most matches their crayon’s color and they cut it in half. I hot clue the pipe cleaners to the back to create pose-able arms and legs.

Genius Hour
“Ms. Katzin, why is it called genius hour if specials is only 45 minutes?” one sassy yet observant student asks. The answer is because this is an idea I borrowed from the kindergarten team. Out at carpool I started noticing kindergartners with amazing creations that they were designing and building during Genius Hour – an hour devoted to creativity. I am absolutely over the moon about this process and wish I had thought of doing it earlier in the year.

Basically – Genius Hour is where you can make whatever you want out of the materials provided. The creative ideas the kids come up with is astonishing. Here are the materials they could use: Pipe cleaners, scrapbook paper, scrap paper, felt, string, beads, paper cups, straws, receipt paper, mat board, scissors, staples, tape, glue. I explained the supplies to them and went over some basic rules and procedures and then they got to work.

One very cool and popular item was the Corru-Gator which crimps the paper. I only had one so the kids had to bring their paper to me but I plan on ordering a bunch more for next year.

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Check out these amazing creations!

I ended up placing a few more items out like bulletin board boarders and painted paper scraps as things got depleted. I am already starting to collect random knick-knacks to put in the Genius Hour bin for next year. I am hoping to do this more frequently than just the last day of art class.

Hope everyone has a great summer! See you in the fall!

❤ Mrs. Katzin


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Abstract Bubbles

This project was done with 1st, 2nd, and 3rd graders. The kids called me out for planning such an easy-peasy project and I was honest with them – we were going to end the school year with easy stuff so that everyone is on task and chill. Every end of the school year is bonkers but this year I could really feel my students running out of steam and brain power towards the end. Maybe it was all of the inclement weather days we had this year? Maybe it was just being exhausted from working so hard in school? Anyway, I wanted something relaxing and easy that would use the last remnants of paint.

Students traced different sized cups and circular objects with a crayon. They were encouraged to overlap and go off the page. Then, they used water color paints to fill in the shapes. This abstract painting was somewhat meditative. For all of the “this is too easy!” complaining, the kids ended up liking the method. Sometimes process > product.

It probably also helped that I walked around and blew bubbles at them while they painted. Did you know that many children’s instinctive reaction to bubbles is to eat them? So now I must remind students not only to please don’t eat the artwork but please don’t eat the bubbles too!

❤ Mrs. K


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Geode Agates

I saw this project all over Instagram and knew it would be perfect for the last few weeks of school! The main inspiration came from @artwithmrs.e and her tutorial was super helpful. We began by looking at different geodes ad agate slices. Students connected this to their classroom learning because they learn about gems and minerals in 3rd grade.

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I found that this project worked best step-by-step so I did a demo on the doc cam and everyone followed along. We began by painting an oval with water. Then, students used analogous colors to create concentric rings going inward with water color paint. They sprinkled salt and outlined their shape with metallic tempera paint to finish it off. These are from one 4th grade and several 3rd grade classes. Nice work guys!

❤ Mrs. K


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The Day the Crayons Quit

Yesterday was Halloween. Everybody dressed up in a costume and there was a parade around the school. Technically the parade was for “Book Character Day” not Halloween but it is no coincidence that they are on the same day.

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Your Favorite Slytherin Professor

With excitement flowing through the students like electricity I knew that working on our regular academic projects would be a challenge. I wanted to do something based on a book to go along with the theme of the day. Something easy and fun and silly. So, we read one of my most favorite stories The Day the Crayons Quit and the sequel, The Day the Crayons Came Home

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Students used sharpies and crayons to decorate a popsicle stick. They created a face for their character and even added pipe cleaners (which I hot glued) to give their crayon a pose.

This was the PREFECT one day project for Book Character Day/Halloween!

❤ Mrs. K


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Op Art Hearts

With the school year winding down to a close, there was one 5th grade class that had a lot of extra time after they finished their dreamcatchers. I knew I wanted to give them a project that would be easy and fun and when I saw THIS I knew it would be perfect. We started out with a PowerPoint that had a whole bunch of different op-art examples that basically blew the 5th grader’s minds. They LOVE op-art! They traced a ruler across a paper and then created a shape or design which they colored in a pattern.

This was a mellow and engaging project to end the year with, nice job 5th graders!

❤ Ms. K