Monday, December 12, 2011

Just For Fun

Wishing you a great Holiday Season! Thank you for sharing your artists with me. Enjoy.

Monday, November 21, 2011

A little less conversation and a little more abstraction.

A big goal for educators in Huntsville City Schools this year is to create Professional Learning Communities... basically, working together with our peers to collaborate and teach more effectively and efficiently.
This month, Mrs. Hefner, our music teacher, and I planned a lesson to coincide with each other. The 2nd and 3rd  grade classes are learning about Paul Klee, who was a musician and an artist.
Mrs. Hefner is teaching them about repetition and pattern in his artwork, and music, while I am teaching them about his abstraction of people.

here is an example of my third grade abstract people, based on Paul Klee's Grooms Arrival (above).

Little people making Klee's Little People

How is it kids get more talented and smarter the younger they are?
Check it out, gesture drawings (quick drawing capturing the energy and movement of the subject) inspired by Paul Klee's abstract people. The little ones especially loved "modeling" poses for their classmates.

and the real thing-- if you want to call it that--pretty awesome, right?

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Gallery Greatness!

What are your plans for Thanksgiving break? In between football and turkey comas, throw in a little culture and swing by the Huntsville Museum of Art! Highlands and Blossomwood Schools are both featured in the Community Gallery on the ground level. We have 20 wonderful pieces of art by our very talented students hanging there right now!
Break the boredom of turkey sandwiches, grab a slice of pizza from Pan E Vino, ( I would suggest the Matisse Pizza) and take in a little art for the holidays.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Big Cats, Little Jungle

So.... this is one of those lessons I've had in the file cabinet for years, literally, and kept pulling it out each year and just never got around to it....
This year, I finally taught the lesson and I'm so glad I did!
The fourth and fifth graders loved making the 3-D triaramas, and making the leaves, vines and bushes "pop up." We viewed and discussed Henri Rousseau's jungle paintings and the student drew a big cat. The second part of the lesson involved cutting out the cat, and folding the triarama and adding the foliage.

Here's a couple of Rousseau's Jungles.

Story Quilts

"Yes, me, Cassie Louise Lightfoot, only eight years old and in the third grade and I CAN FLY."-Faith Ringgold's Tar Beach

My second and third graders made fantastic story quilts from construction paper and magazine scraps based on the book and artwork by Faith Ringgold. The wonderful book tells the story of a little girl who dreams of flying over New York City, and owning all that she can see. "Tar Beach" is their rooftop where their meet their neighbors and have picnics. Below is one of the sweet, imaginative story quilts by my students.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Watercolor Waterlilies

One of my favorite, no-fail lessons is the watercolor waterlilies based on Claude Monet's very popular series.
The students love to paint, but also think it's pretty fascinating how large some of the paintings are.... they can take up an entire ROOM!
While we can't work on that large of a scale, my Kindergarteners and First Graders always enjoy painting their very own waterlilies inspired by Monet.

If your child want to learn more about Claude Monet, check out these books:
Linnea in Monet's Garden, by Christine Bjork and Lena Anderson
Getting to Know the World's Greatest Artists: Monet by Mike Venezia

Monday, October 24, 2011

Very High-Brow Artistic Shading...or just talented kids.

Here are my fourth and fifth graders van Gogh inspired Irises. My students used oil pastels to create shadows and light on their irises, making them more realistic. Also notice how the overlapping of the stems create depth. Wow!

Starry Night, paint your palette blue and grey...

Our Second and Third graders joined in the 'van Gogh fun" by using oil pastels to create a "Starry Night" inspired piece. With very SIMPLE instructions, these guys owned it.

van Gogh, more than cutting off ears.

Our Kindergarteners and First Graders got some great practice cutting, gluing and drawing with their Sunflower creations. Each piece was traced and cut, then glued together. The students used warm colors, or "colors of the sun" to fill the petals. To complete their drawing, the students drew pots and stems for their cut paper sunflower. Here are a few examplse of a beautiful sunflower inspired by van Gogh, and the original... Can you tell the difference?

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Spooky Fun

Hello Friends!
Here's the next fabulous lesson... we took a break from our very serious art history curriculum to do something fun... check it out... you'll love it!

Kindergarten and First grade did FUNNY MUMMIES! We discussed briefly Ancient Egypt and mummification-- isn't that what every 6 year old talks about? The cool part is the art process. We used crayon to draw and color our mummies, and liquid watercolor to paint over then. Learning a science concept... water and oil don't mix... the crayon repelled the watercolor and gave a great antiqued effect to the mummies.

and here's the end result!

So then... Second and third grade did a little research on Owls. We looked at books about different species of owls. Thank you Ms. Fuller for collaborating in our Professional Learning Community--(also known as a school).
Our kids... rocked it.

but my all time favorite....maybe because I'm an architecture nerd... VICTORIAN HOUSES!

My students were given the option to make then spooky, but only after they drew historically correct Victorian Homes. A few of my Blossomwood kids were lucky enough to take a walking tour around our temporary home in East Clinton School to see the real thing.

Henri Matisse

So our first lesson was inspired by Henri Matisse.
 My K-1's did torn paper faces.

aren't they fabulous!? My darling ones learned to use glue and fine motor skills by tearing little pieces and placing them perfectly for "self-portraits" using bright, vibrant colors!

Then, 2-3 graders did a Matisse-inspired goldfish watercolor painting.

and LOOK at what they did! They EXCELLED in taking care of their brushes, and using both watercolor cakes and liquid watercolors.

4-5 grades did a cut paper collage of a self-portrait.

Again, amazing. I love the expressive faces that they made by just using scissors. NO DRAWING ALLOWED!

The two main things I want your child to remember about Matisse is that he loved to "draw with scissors" and he loved to use bright, vibrant colors in his paintings-- twhich was very unpopular at the time.
I'm amazed every day at how smart and creative my little ones are... Thanks for sharing them with me.

Monday, October 10, 2011

New at This!

Hey Guys,
So.... I'm biting the technological bullet and starting a blog to share the wonderful work created by my students at Blossomwood and Highlands Elementary Schools. So get ready parents, friends and see some fantastic work, lots of mistakes and hopefully lots of great ideas!