Monday, February 1, 2016

Ceramics: Tea Sets and Masks

It's taken us a while, but our first three projects in my ceramics electives have finally been finished up.  We started off the year with pinch pot tea cups, moved to coil tea pots (to make a set), and then we did slab masks.  This covered the three basic hand-building skills and of course, wedging and scoring and slipping.

I am doing my best to make my assignments as open ended as possible.  I mentioned in my previous post that I am moving towards TAB in my elementary room, and I'm also experimenting with it a bit in the high school room.  Now, the electives are a bit harder to leave open ended in terms of choice of material, so I am doing my best to make the assignments as open ended as possible.  In the beginning, it was sort of hard to think up assignments that are open-ended, but it's getting easier and easier as we go.

To make our slab masks, I gave students a variety of mask forms to choose from to slump their slabs over.  They were required to give their mask a theme, and to think about texture.  The lion mask above?  That right there is the first 100 I've ever given on an assignment!  The pictures literally give it no justice.  I'm loving that my students are thinking outside the box, too, with their surface decoration.  Our district's mascot is a cougar, so one of my volleyball players made a cougar mask and meticulously glued in fishing twine to the whisker holes she made.  It literally took her 2 1/2 class periods to hot glue those babies into the holes.  So awesome!

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The tea cups and tea pots were two separate assignments but they had to go together.  Students were required to make four identical shaped tea cups (though surface decoration could vary a bit based on the theme).


I've got more to come after this!  Our current two projects that are being finished up are ceramic shoes (life size!) and chia pets. :)

Friday, January 29, 2016

Studio Art: Grid Portraits

I promise I haven't left you!  I've just been doing a little soul searching, if you want to call it that.  In other words, I have been feeling like I'm in a rut and I'm not happy with the way I'm teaching, particularly in my elementary grade levels.  So, with that being said, my next few posts are going to be about my adventures in TAB!!  Yep, that's right.  I'm working on transitioning a few elementary classes into choice based learning.

At the high school level, I feel as if the choice based learning comes a bit more naturally, though I still feel as if I need to loosen the reigns a bit.  So, as I share some of our high school projects that we have completed this year so far, you'll hopefully notice me loosening up on requirements.  

But, enough of that for now.  These oil pastel self-portrait projects were completed by my Studio Art students (9th-12 graders), and it was something that really pushed the boundaries for them.  We looked at artwork by various portrait artists, including VanGogh, Frida Kahlo, Kehinde Wiley, and Chuck Close, discussing how each artist used the self-portrait for a different reason.  Using the grid method, I had students draw a "selfie" they had taken of themselves onto 16"x 20" paper.

Initially, I left the choice of material open ended for students, as long as they used color.  I decided to use oil pastels to do my self portrait, something I've never done with oil pastels before.  Many of the students decided to follow suite, seeing how I was challenging myself to do something new.  I have to say I'm extremely happy with how these turned out!

The 10 Looks of Mrs. Impey: "I left my sketchbook in my locker...can I go get it?"


Done by our two exchange students...fabulous work for two ladies who haven't hard art classes in years!



These students used colored pencils, or a combination of colored pencils and oil pastels.


I also used these drawing projects as my interim assessment for DDI.  I don't know if any of you have to do Data Driven Instruction, but my fellow art teachers and I have been getting creative with how we give our assessments.  Instead of doing tests or quizzes, like we had to do last year, we are making the artwork the assessment.  Since we have been stressing observational drawing, this fit in perfectly as it fell in line with my curriculum but it also worked for our DDI rubric for the 2nd quarter.  Less work for me and less work for my students!


Tuesday, November 10, 2015

We're at it again...mural painting with art club!

I'm super excited to say that we painting another mural this year...and it's HUGE!!  We are painting the entire wall in our cafeteria to look like a Paris city street.  I have a high school art club this year (with a few 7th and 8th graders mixed in) and we meet after school on Wednesdays for about an hour.  It's a super short period of time and I  feel like our progress is crawling, but I'm just excited to get to paint on a wall!!  Here's our progress so far!
We made sure to tape everything off so we didn't get in trouble for painting on the kick boards or the ceiling. ;)


The fountain is a work in progress...and the students decided that the sky needs some work.  They aren't happy with the clouds, and I fully support their decision.  I'm trying to be as hands off as possible for this, showing students some basic techniques to paint and letting them do most of the work.