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Snowy Mitten Self Portraits

Kindergarteners learned all about self-portraits for this fun winter project!

We began by reading The Mitten and creating colorful sparkly mittens. Students traced a mitten template onto white paper and used tissue paper, glue, and glitter to create sparkly colors.

The next week, we did a step-by-step drawing of how to make a self-portrait. Students used crayons to color in their self-portrait and then cut and glues it to a piece of construction paper.

The final week, students cut and glued their mitten to the paper and then used a cotton swab and white paint to create “snow.”

One of the classes didn’t have time to do the portrait so they just cut and glued the mitten which still turned out pretty great!

As fun as this winter-themed project was, I really can’t wait for spring!

‚̧ Mrs. K


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 ūüôā

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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Little Trees

First graders learned all about color mixing, shapes, texture, and stamping for this project. We began by doing carousel painting with tints and shades of green and orange.

The next week, students created a purple background by mixing blue and pink. They used a fork to scratch texture into the wet paint.

That did not take up the entire 45 minute block so we were also able to start tracing and cutting circles from the tints and shades papers.


The last day, we assembled everything together. Students overlapped their circles and glued them down with just a dot of liquid glue.


Then, they used cardboard and marker caps to dip and stamp tree trunks, branches, and snow!

These are so sweet!

Great job first graders!

‚̧ Mrs. K

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Kinder Pumpkins

Kindergartners are just finishing up their pumpkin paintings so I figured I would share a few in time for Halloween. We began by reading The Legend of Spookley the Square Pumpkin which is a adorable rhyming story with gorgeous illustrations. Then, we drew pumpkins using an oval and curved lines on big white paper.


Students painted their pumpkins by mixing red and yellow paint. The next week, we created texture on purple paper by rubbing crayons with a texture mat. Then students cut out their pumpkins and glued them. They chose a piece of green paper and drew a leaf which got cut out and glued to the stem of the pumpkin. With scrap papers they rolled little lines into a cylinder and unrolled it to make a curly spiral vine. I do not have any pictures of the process but here are some great examples of the final product:

I love these precious pumpkins!

‚̧ Mrs. K


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Pumpkins Inspired by Yayoi Kusama

Ever since I found out that the artwork of Yayoi Kusama will be displayed at the High Museum in 2018  I have been HYPED. There is so much to love about this artist Рfrom the fact that she is a woman to the fact that she has been creating artwork (paintings, sculptures, installations Рyou name it!) for several decades, any way you look at it Yayoi Kusama is impressive. I love her bold graphic style and now, so did my second graders! We began by looking at some of her artwork and noticing that she often creates sculptures of pumpkins that have polka dots.


We bean our own version by drawing a pumpkin on construction paper. Students could choose any color they wanted because Kusama’s pumpkins are often multi-colored or other colors besides orange. I showed students how to draw a pumpkin by making an oval in the middle with curved lines on the sides.


After drawing, students used white paint to go over their lines. Then, they dipped a marker cap and stamped to make polka dots.

A colorful pumpkin patch:


The next week, student carefully cut out their pumpkins and glued them to another piece of construction paper. Then, they drew geometric shapes (triangles) in the background and traced over the lines with markers.

This was such a fun project and a really great twist on making pumpkins. Way to go 2nd graders!

‚̧ Mrs. K

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Autumn Trees by Kindergarten

Kindergarteners began this lesson with the story “Sky Color.”


This story is super cute, it is all about a young artist who discovers that the sky doesn’t always have to be painted blue. I always find that my blue paint/crayons/markers/ANYTHING is the first to run out because it is the most popular color for filling up a sky. I wanted my students to know that the sky can be many different colors so this book was perfect to lead us into the project. Each student got a white oil pastel and filled their paper with¬† clouds. Then, they used water colors to paint “sky colors” which made their clouds magically appear!

The next week, we watched the BrainPop about Fall. We talked about all of the changes that happen when Fall comes especially the beautiful leaves. We reviewed color mixing too. Students drew a tree on top of their sky color background with a brown oil pastel.

They start off with a vertical line and then make it thicker. Next, they draw two diagonal lines to make the letter Y. They draw another vertical line in between and make all of those thicker. The little branches are created by creating little Y’s.


Now the original idea for this project comes from¬†here¬†and they used aluminum foil to create the leaves. With my first batch of kinders I also had them use aluminum foil and that was the only time we did it that way because they did not turn out great. Most of the foil trees just looked like a big ol’ blob of paint on the paper and the detail of the branches was lost. So I racked my brain – and my supply closet – for something else we could use to print leaves. I found a stash of pine cones and they turned out to be absolutely PERFECT for this! So all the other classes used pine cones to dip and stamp yellow and red paint.

These are just absolutely charming:

Great job kindergarteners!


Mrs. K



Winter Collagraph Cards

The inspiration for this project comes from¬†Mrs. Knight’s Smartest Artists!¬†I loved the idea of using materials to create a wintery landscape for 3rd grade collagraphs.



We started off by brainstorming different animals/objects/scenes we could show for a winter wonderland. Students used a variety of textured materials to create their printing plate. They drew their design in pencil first then cut and glued shapes.

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Each student was responsible for creating a printing plate, at least one card, and at least on flat print.


So while some kiddos printed at the back table, others wrote cards.


Students could choose anybody to write their greeting card to. they had to include a greeting, 5 sentences, and a closing. I have written before about how much I adore children’s writing especially when it is open ended and this project was no exception to the absolute cuteness kids can create.

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I have also written before about how much I despise printmaking. Not because of the mess but because it just never turns out that great. Also it is 2016 and there are 3d printers so why in the world are we teaching something as archaic as handmade 2d printing? Anyway. . . this project changed my mind a little bit because the prints came out beautiful.

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One particular class was super into the idea of penguins so there were many penguin themed prints!

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I really love how these turned out but hope that the weather continues to be in the 50s-70s. NO THANK YOU SNOW (stay up north where you belong).


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037 Second Graders did an amazing job creating snowbird collages. The project is based on a project over at¬†Deep Space Sparkle. We started off reading¬†Snowballs¬†by Lois Elhert. Students noticed the collage and overlapping details in the book and were inspried to include that in their own artwork. Snowballs-1024x917 We began by stamping birch trees on white paper. Students chose a piece of construction paper to glue their trees down. 040 The next week we created “magic” paper with crayons, liquid water colors, and salt. 2nd graders included a pattern of a variety of lines and shapes and were amazed as the white crayon resisted the watercolor paint. They also thought the salt-on-watercolor effect was pretty neat. 011 031 Our next meeting was used to create the bodies for our birds out of shapes. Students folded their paper into quarters and had to cut shapes in half — a great reinforcement of math concepts!¬†The last week was filled with fun: 2nd graders used white paint and one little finger to “make it snow” on their paper. 008 White and black crayons created branches with highlights and shadows. 007 Some students had the opportunity to write a story or artist’s statement to go along with their artwork. They are absolutely hilarious and awesome! 041 (2) 042 006 (2) 001 (2) 005 006 003 007 (2) 001 008 (2) 007 (3) 009 (2) 018 010 (2) 019 017 037 016 031 (2) 015 (2) 030 (2) 021


Snowflake Snowmen during #Snowpocalypse



Yesterday around 11:00 when it began to snow outside, first graders marveled at the magical white flakes while they made snowmen. One student excitedly shouted “Its snowing and we are making snowmen!” to my delight (yay for making connections.) Little did we all know that the next few hours would bring a dystopian mayhem that would ultimately shut down the entire Atlanta area and create a frozen wasteland of abandoned cars, stranded people, and wintry chaos. In a city where people drive like maniacs on sunny days, this polar fiasco has caused complete insanity and a traffic nightmare.

atlanta traffic


During my 4 hour commute last night (a 12 mile distance that usually takes 20 minutes) I was amazed at the kindness of people to each other. I saw people shoveling roads, checking on each other in cars, and helping neighbors. I am¬†very¬†lucky to have gotten to a safe place in a relatively short amount of time. My heart goes out to all of the people who were en route for 7, 8, 9 + hours and those who are even still out there stuck in their cars or sleeping in stores. Mimosa Elementary had several students and a couple dozen teachers spend the night — what a crazy situation! I am beyond thankful that everyone is safe and sound.



This project (inspired by this project) began innocently enough and who would have known that it would end on what is being called #HOTHlanta #snowpocalypse #Atlantarctica #snowmageddon #snowJAM2014 ? We began by reading Snowmen at Night and noticing the parts of a snowman (arms, noses, scarves, hats, body, head, mouth, eyes, etc.)


First graders learned all about symmetry when they created snowflakes out of white paper. This process was as complicated as Atlanta traffic has been over the past 24 hours:



Researching YouTube came up with beautiful examples of snowflakes that were just a bit too complicated for my 1st graders.¬†Before even attempting this I had my BFF over at¬†¬†try to make some snowflakes. I figured if a 25-year-old Fitness Creature can do it then so can a bunch of 6 year olds. ¬†I found that the “best” way — I use that word generously — was to have the kids fold a square up and draw triangles on it while I went around and drew a curved line.

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They created the body and head on day one. Some of the snowflakes ended up being cut in half and flipping it around to make a whole shape reinforced both symmetry and math concepts.


Day two was spent adding details. Students used painted paper scraps to create a nose, hat, and shoes. They used crayons for the arms and mouth. Two buttons became the eyes. (Check out those neat-o loop/loom bracelets . . . those things are all the rage!)

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A ribbon became the scarf.

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One finger dipped in white paint made snow.


I love how these turned out, they are so fun and unique just like snowflakes and just like first graders!

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* * * * * Stay safe in the snow, y’all! * * * * *

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Winter Mittens

Kindergartners made mittens just in time for winter! We began with Carousel Painting using tints and shades of primary colors. Folding the paper into 6 stripes was kind of tricky but kinders made it work.

Am I turning into the elementary art class version of Tim Gunn? Possibly. Have I been watching a lot of Project Runway lately? Absolutely. Anyhow. . . carry on!

Day two was spent cutting out a mitten shape and using oil pastels to create patterns in the stripes.


Now before any haters decide to hate about the use of a TEMPLATE (HOW COULD YOU MS. K?!?!) I strongly urge those haters to get a group of 25 five year olds (with limited language abilities) to cut a mitten out that is both the correct shape and size. I never really understood why people have such issues about using template for little kids; it makes things a lot easier for them which in turn allows them to have ownership over their work and ultimately make them feel empowered as artists.

Why so serious? 

The next step was to glue down the mittens onto construction paper and add cotton balls as warm fuzzy texture. Q-tips dipped in white paint created snow and crayons were used to draw the animals from The Mitten. This folktale has beautiful illustrations and the kids loved identifying and describing all of the animals in the story.

The Mitten

The mittens look so cute! I love the amount of details the patterns and animals created. Great job kindergarteners!

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