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ART WITH MS K


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Check out these cutie woven birdhouses by grade 2!

We began by creating patterned paper with Mr. Sketch watercolor markers. The process for getting the neat tie-dye effect can be found here. Next, we created a weaving with construction paper. This is how I create a loom with my students. We cut one of the pattern papers into a triangle or trapezoid or semi-circle to create a roof. Students created a circle for the hole in their birdhouse ad used colorful construction paper to make a bird or any animal that they want. There were birds, cats, dogs, unicorns, narwhals, lizards, eagles, alligators, turtles, mice, and all sorts of other creatures!

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Sleepy Weaving

The idea for this project came from Mrs. Elder’s World of Art. We began by weaving. This is a really tough skill for kindergartners to get the hang of. I think that many of them just don’t quite yet have the fine-motor skills necessary to successfully weave in an over-under pattern. A few kids usually get the hang of it but most are usually on the struggle bus. Because of that, I always teach weaving very sloooooowly. We begin by folding a paper in half like a book. Then I walk around and draw 5 dots on each paper.

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The students write their names above the dots then draw a vertical line going down from the dots.

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Next, they “cut on the line and stop at the dot.” This essentially created a loom on which to weave.

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They cut another paper into strips and unfold their loom.

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Then, they go “over the river and under the bridge” with their “snake” to weave.

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I show them how to do the opposite for the next one so that it creates a pattern. I also tel the it is ok if all of the snakes are next to each other, it still counts as weaving!

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That pretty much took up every single second of the first day. The next day, we created a colorful background with crayons and watercolors. Some classes did not have time to do that so they just used construction paper. On the last day, I did a demo of how to draw a portrait of yourself sleeping. Students could also add a stuffed toy.

Sweet dreams, kindergartners!

❤ Ms. K


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Stitching and Pets in Art Club

This Cassie Stephens-inspired project was challenging but fun for my art club kiddos. We began by painting a piece of 12×12 cardboard with tempera paint. I showed students how to create a gradient by blending colors.

Then, students filled out the practice page to kind of get in the mindset of stitching.

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It was a little difficult for them to grasp the concept of creating these 2D lines in 3D space at first but with a little bit of practice, they got the hang of it. The square design was certainly the easiest but I had many students challenge themselves to create one of the more difficult designs. On the back of the cardboard, we traced a plate and created 16 notches.

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There was a lot of peer support that happened especially when I loudly declared that I would not be tying any more knots for anybody. Students could choose any color of yarn they wanted to create their design.

As students completed their stitching, they began a quick and easy pet portrait project. I like to bookend really challenging projects with simple ones sometimes to keep motivation and morale up. The stitching proved to be SUPER challenging for some kids so I figured it was time to take it easy with a simple drawing and painting project based on this lesson.  One of my more observant and sassy 5th graders asked “isn’t that for the little kids?!” But they enjoyed it anyway 😛

Not everyone completed the pet portraits but the nice thing about art club is that the students have the memory and motivation to work on their projects for long stretches of time. They will get a chance to finish as we move into our next project of emoji plushies!

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Self-Portraits

Usually when I hang displays of artwork, the displays are homogeneous and feature the same project from a variety of different classes. I was inspired by a recent conversation about displaying artwork to mix it up a bit for kindergarten, 2nd, and 3rd grade’s self-portraits.

I had an art teacher a long time ago who always said that when displaying artwork you should mix up the projects so that viewers don’t compare the works. Each student’s work should be appreciated on it’s own and that is easier to do when the work is surrounded by a variety of projects.

Since kinder, 2nd, and 3rd grade all finished their self-portraits around the same time, I thought it would be fun to display them all together. They are so colorful and the mixture of media and methods is really awesome to see!

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I love how each one is so unique — even though the students experienced the same demonstrations and used the same materials during the process, their products are all so different!

If you are interested in seeing any of the step-by-step lessons for these self-portraits you can see kindergarten’s here, 2nd grade’s here, and 3rd grade’s here.


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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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Woven Animals

First graders studied animals in their PBL unit this spring and I thought a woven animal would be a great cross-curricular experience! This ended up being a kind of twist on the woven alligators I have done before but with more choice and voice. I was apprehensive about this at first because it is more open ended but just like kindergartener’s clay animals  I was pleasantly surprised and extremely impressed!

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We began by creating painted paper using the primary colors and white. We talked about mixing secondary colors and tints. Students used the other end of the paintbrush to “draw” designs, lines, and shapes into their painting.

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The next day, we created a weaving. Students had already been studying their animals in their home room classes and were able to answer the question: What color is your animal mostly? They picked out a piece of construction paper to represent their animal and created a loom to weave. They cut their painting into strips of paper to use as the weaving pieces.

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On the third day, we talked about how animal’s body parts are made out of shapes. We talked about the different shapes of each animal and I demonstrated how to cut and glue other pieces of construction paper to add details, even pop-up details! I think first graders did an absolutely fantastic job with these, they have so much personality and the level of engagement, excitement, and motivation was so high because of the cross-curricular connection.

Whales with curly 3D water coming out of the blow holes:

Foxes:

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Koalas:

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Komodo dragons:

Rabbits:

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Sharks:

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A tree frog:

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A jaguar:

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And my personal fave, pink flamingos:

I can’t even describe how proud I am of the kiddos for creating these, they are absolutely magnificent!


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Ojos de Dios

Weaving is not my favorite skill to teach. I have talked before about how I think it is kind of boring and not that creative because they are all pretty much the same. HOWEVER I am now a believer after doing this project.

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I was inspired by the delightfully colorful blog Art, Eat, Tie Dye, Repeat for this lesson. We began with a PowerPoint featuring examples of Ojos de Dios and some background info about the native art form. On that first day, students created a painted paper that was supposed to be used for their background (more on that later).

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I did a demo on how to paint a galaxy and that seemed to be a very popular option! The next week when we met, each student received an X made out of popsicle sticks that they labeled with their initials and the numbers 1-4. I used regular school glue to create the Xs to give to the students but hot glue would probably work too.

Now, before I go any further I must disclaim the extreme challenge that this project was for both myself and my students. This one is kinda complicated. I had watched a couple of youtube videos to see how to do it (this is a good one even though I have no idea what she is saying this must be what my ESOL kids feel like).  I even used my specials team as guinea pigs and practiced teaching it to them (thanks guys!). One teacher pointed out that it was a lot easier to do from the underside and after  lot of trial and error, the students agreed! I taught students how to do both ways and they could choose the easier method that worked for them. There was certainly some frustration getting started but in the end, most students were incredibly proud and even asked to make another one! Anyways, back to that X –

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Some kids needed help tying the string to the middle but most had the hang of it.So the first step is to tie the string in the middle and it doesnt really matter which numbers it is in between.

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The pattern for weaving is “over – under – under.” Start by placing the string over one of the sticks(2).

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Next bring it underneath that stick(2):

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Put it under the stick next to that one as well:

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Then place it over that same stick (1) to create a line:

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Next, go under 1 and 4 and over 4:

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Continue the pattern of “over – under – under.” Lines will start stacking up along the popsicle sticks.

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The other side will look like a square or diamond:

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I told students to leave about a finger’s length of string to tie on the next color.

 

Then continue the pattern. You can also weave from the front by alternating diagonals. Wrap the string around one stick then go diagonally across, then under, then across.

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Each color added will create more lines on the back and more diamonds on the front.

 

To finish it off, tape the end of the string to the back of the popsicle stick.

 

The kids really enjoyed getting to choose their favorite colors and express themselves through color.

Now when I showed students the original plan which was to glue the weaving to the paper we created the first day, there was basically a mutiny. It turned out they wanted to have the Ojos de Dios separate. I decided that we would create envelopes with the papers instead so that they could put the Ojos in instead of on them. Students folded their paper in half and used a hole puncher to punch holes up the sides.

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Then, they cut small pieces of yarn and tied them to create fringe. I told them not to pull too tightly on the yarn or the paper would rip. They could use 1 or 2 colors and cut the fringe to the length of their choice.

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They could also braid yarn together to create a strap if they wanted to.

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These turned out SO COOL!!! The best part was that they were really proud of their work and super engaged. They loved the idea of creating something functional. A couple students used sequins to create a jeweled effect and one kid even wrote “MK” for a Michael Kors bag (lol)! Students who were able to make more than one weaving could glue one of their Ojos to the outside of the pouch for more decoration.

We were able to finish these just in time for Mother’s Day and many students are planning to give them as gifts! Today one student brought me a great gift – she had created a miniature one at home ❤

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Value Weaving Self Portraits

What do you so when you are scrambling for an end for an end of the year project that will keep 5th graders engaged and hit some overlooked standards? You make something up and keep your fingers crossed that it isn’t a fiasco. This lesson was anything but a fiasco and one that will surely be in my bag o’ classic awesome lessons for years to come.

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I needed something that would continue to incorporate craft techniques, touch upon value/tint/shade, and provide a way to show emphasis and contrast. I wanted to utilize skills we have learned already so that during testing and in the weeks after I wouldn’t be pushing tired minds too far but still present an interesting project. On the first day we talked about value and 5th graders painted a value scale.

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The next way was all about weaving. Students used the fancy scissors to cut a warp and colorful construction paper for a weft. We briefly discussed color schemes and students could choose any color they wanted but were encouraged to think about their choice and perhaps even make it complementary or monochromatic.

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The next day was a sketching day. We talked about emojis and students used mirrors to draw self portraits with an emoji twist. They picked their favorite to make into a final draft and traced it with sharpie. Then they added a thought or speech bubble.

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These turned out so fabulous, I am very impressed with all of them! I love how graphic and bold these portraits are. This was the perfect project to end the school year and to end elementary art with.

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I am really going to miss this year’s 5th grade class. I have known many of them since 3rd grade and it has been a joy to watch them grow into the thoughtful and amazing people they are. Overall this has been a spectacular year and I cannot believe that in a few hours I will be done with my 3rd year of teaching. I like to look back at my posts from my first year sometimes because it reminds me what a dream come true this job truly is for me. I started this year feeling a little burned out and kind of deflated but I feel like I am ending on a strong, positive note. I will be posting during the summer but for all of my kiddos who are reading — I hope you have a great summer and I will see you next year!

❤ Ms. K


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Clay Looms

This project was inspired by It is Art Day! Check out that post for more awesome examples and step-by-step directions!

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We began by rolling out clay into a slab and cutting out the center to make a flat donut. We used straws to poke and odd number of holes around the edge. We poked holes using cut up straws. I found that 13 or 15 holes worked best.(Make sure the holes go all the way through! I had a batch that I forgot to double check and no amount of stabbing at the stoneware clay would make a hole appear. Luckily I had made several extras so it was all good!)  It was also helpful to make 2 of the holes kind of off the the side in order to designate where to hang it. Texture was added with stamps and other tools.

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After the looms went through the bisque kiln, we used oil pastels and water colors to design.

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First, color on the clay with an oil pastel.

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You can paint right on top with water colors to create a really lovely resist.

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We used twisty wires and pony beads to make a place to hang it up.

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Next is the really tricky part. It took over an entire class to do this step by step and 5th graders definitely had to practice some patience and perseverance but we made it! I found that the easiest way to explain this was to use the analogy of a clock or a bicycle wheel with spokes. I did not have 5th graders label theirs like I have in the following pictures but I definitely will next year!

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Begin by tying a knot at 12 or 13 o’clock. Make sure the other end of the yarn has some tape around it to it doesn’t fray. I told my kiddos to make it look like a shoelace.

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Next, put the other end through a hole that is on the opposite side. This was pretty important because not everybody had a “6 o’clock” that was directly opposite from the top hole. I told students to just choose whichever one was closer. In my example I went to 7 o’clock:

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Then, we “walk around the clock”. Go from 7 to 1.. . .

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Go from 1 to 8. . .

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Go from 8 to 2 to 9. . .

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After the first few steps some students start to understand the pattern. I tell those students to work ahead and finish and then they become my helpers and assist students who may be struggling. I demonstrated the steps on a doc cam and had some students working on the carpet looking at the board and other students in small groups at their tables. After every step I tried to circulate around the room at least once and help out kiddos who needed. Eventually we went all the way around:

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This last part is pretty tricky and I ended up doing it for most of the students. Basically you have to make sure you have an odd number of “spokes” going around the wheel. If you for some reason do not have an odd number, skip a hole or go through a hole twice and kind of finagle it to make it happen. You take the end of the string and put it through the center underneath the top layer and gather up all the spokes and shift them to the middle. (I wish I could have snapped better picture of this but it makes a lot more sense if you try it out for yourself!)

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Tie a knot in the middle and make sure everything is centered! Then snip off the ends.

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When you go to weave, make sure you do it from the front. You can tell the front from the back because the front lo0ks symmetrical and the back looks like a bunch of lines.

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To begin weaving, tie a new piece of yarn on any string in the middle and go around and around: over, under, over, under. When you run out of that color, tie a new color to the end and keep going.

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I think these turned out fabulous and the even though the process was challenging, the kids ended up loving it!

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Bugs on Rugs by Kindergarten

Kindergarteners learned all about the art of weaving and the process of mixing colors when they made bugs on rugs. We began by making textured painted paper.

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The loom was colorful construction paper and the process of weaving was quite a challenge but Kindergarteners did an excellent job trying their very best. The last week, we cut frayed edges and used bug stamps on the rugs.

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Students also decorated and assembled parts for a bug and identified bugs as living things (yay cross-curricular!)

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Great job kindergarteners!

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🙂