Saturday, September 29, 2012

Roy G. Biv has Rainbow Colored Hair!

My first graders completed their second rainbow project this week.  I gave them one class to create a Roy G. Biv collage.  This is the first time I have really given a project without showing or telling them how to do it...I showed them my plain example, and then gave them the black paper for the background and offered the students peach/brown paper for the skin (ironically, everyone chose peach paper, even the darker skinned students I have).  They did really well on this!  It was a little hectic for my liking, with paper everywhere, but the products they created still had a really good outcome!  I've seen this project on Pinterest here, but I gave the students artistic freedom to draw Roy's head however they wanted to.  I had to prompt some of them to draw his head bigger, but most of them did pretty well.  I also stipulated that they had to use two strips of paper per color for his hair.  I also encouraged them to cut, bend, and curl Roy's hair as well!

These were some of my favorites from the completed projects!  These students really got creative with different hair styles.

I am also testing out a generic project rubric with these Roy G. Biv collages.  Since our district is using Marzano, I figured using the generic rubric would help give me points on providing clear rubrics/goals for each project to students.  They will glue these rubrics onto the back of their projects before beginning them.  This way, they will always be able to see what I am grading them on.  I saw this type of rubric on Pinterest here, so I tweaked it a little for what I need.  In particular, I added the "good composition" section to grade students on their placement of objects and to make sure they use the entire page smartly.  I'm sure I may have to adjust it once or twice to get it right, but here is what I'm using so far!

As for how my week went, it was the week from you know where for me!  I think this was one of my worst weeks ever...between receiving mixed messages and misunderstanding information about my SLOs from my administrator and have rowdy kids during after school...I was so beat and stressed on Thursday, that I cried after school!

First, I had a little kindergartner have an accident during class.  I felt so bad because when she started crying, I literally had no idea what had happened to her!  We were in the middle of our first painting project, so it was crucial that I circulate the room to make sure everyone was on task, but I couldn't for the life of me figure out why she was crying!  Then she started asking for her mom, so I thought maybe she was just home sick.  By the time I checked on her the third time, there was a puddle on the floor so I finally realized what had happened.  By this time of course, it was time for me to start teaching the kids how to clean up during a painting project.  That completely went out the window as I tried to make sure she wasn't embarrassed any more than she already felt.

Now, to make matters worse, I didn't have any art smocks in my room (I'm switching over to washable paint thank goodness!) because I brought them home to wash over the summer, and then I forgot about them in my garage until Thursday morning!  I couldn't get this poor girl out of her seat and the nurse was taking an important phone call....then I remembered my art smock was tucked in a drawer somewhere!  After digging that out and wrapping her in an "art dress," I sent her down to the nurse with a friend and she was taken care of...and I thought my day was done there!

During after school, I decided to do a coat of arms project.  This really interested a lot of kids, but I had a group of three 6th graders who thought they were above everyone else.  They were rude and obnoxious, being bullys to kids in the classroom and to me!  I couldn't get a hold of anyone to send them out of the room so I had to deal with it.  After my morning of stress, I just cracked.  I made everyone clean up 15 minutes early and put everything away.  Then, what really sent me over the edge was a 4th grader who decided he didn't like his project so far and just threw it away.  (Mind you, him and I have discussions about how this isn't appropriate because it wastes materials and as an artist, you should learn to fix your mistakes.)  I made him pick it out of the garbage so he sat there and pouted.  

After getting them off to the buses, I went to talk to my super about a hiring committee I'm on.  She asked me what was wrong and the flood gates just opened!  Needless to say, these four students will be taking a day or two off of after school activities, and they won't be considered on my part for art club when I start it.  I also think that I may have to send home my 4th grader with a small writing assignment.  A fellow art teacher showed me a book she reads to the young kids called Beautiful Oops! (I think that's what it was called...).  I'm going to find this book and I think I am going to make him read it on his own and write me a small paper on what he can do the next time he is unhappy with his artwork!

All I can say is, Monday is my day off in the cycle!  Hallelujah!  LOL

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Primary Lines, Chihuly, Shading and Day of the Dead!

So today is the first day I am actually starting to feel overwhelmed by APPR!  It's very frustrating because someone will tell you something and then the next day, they tell you something different and wonder why you were doing it the way you told them to the day before!  I was told today that I need to have my SLO's completely written by Monday...which doesn't seem possible if it hasn't been BEDS day to get my actual student count per grade level!  And, the one thing I am very unclear about is how the HEDI scoring works.  Plus, I haven't graded any of my completed pre-assessments because my administrator wanted me to take a sub day to grade them all at can I write my SLO's if I haven't graded those yet????

Well, now that I have vented and my rant is over, I will get on to what we did in art class today!

My kindergarteners painted primary lines.  First we practiced drawing different lines on a worksheet.  I reviewed how to paint with tempera paint and let the kids go!  I have to say, today's group was VERY good about not getting paint all over the place and they worked really well together to clean up.  Very refreshing, especially for the first day of painting in kindergarten art!  The only thing this group was not very good with, was being creative and using a variety of lines in their painting.  I'm sure I'm going to find that the other groups will be opposite!


I originally intended to begin with cave art for my 6th graders, however their social studies teacher this year was beginning with Ancient Egypt.  Soooo, I photocopied my Egypt packets and planned to start today...however last class the kids complained SOOO much that they didn't want to start with Egypt (I can't blame them too much, they did an Ancient Egypt portrait painting at the end of last year before I planned this years curriculum), so we decided to do Mexican Folk Art instead, and then Egypt.  Today, we worked through the packets (not as much complaining about that once I explained to them that they can use them to study for their final assessment!) and started designing sugar skulls.  Next class, we will use plasterkraft (I think that's what it's called...the strips of plaster in a box???) to cover a head form to make a mask.  Then, we will take two classes to paint them.  Does anyone have any good suggestions on how to go about covering the mask? I've heard of covering it with petroleum jelly before using the plaster stuff, but I'm not sure I want to go that route.  Will wet paper towels work?


My 2nd graders viewed a powerpoint on Chihuly and we discussed his use of color, shape, pattern, and the emotion students felt when looking at his work.  They really enjoyed it.  For our first chihuly project we are going to do the coffee filter chihuly project and create a collaborative wall sculpture with them in the hallway.  For the second chichuly project, I bought the shrinky dink plastic...I'm excited to get to that, it's my first time using it!

Next class we will glue these onto a small piece of tagboard so we can tape them to the wall easier. While we wait for them to dry, I found a variety of videos about Chihuly on YouTube.  The students were really interested in watching how he makes these forms so I have about 25 minutes worth of video pinned to show them.


Last but not least, my 4th graders are working on shading and value.  Last class they received a brief introduction to shape vs. form.  Today they learned how to shade using varying pressure on their pencil, as well as stippling with markers, and hatching/cross-hatching.  Next class they will practice shading 3-D forms with a light source (like a cube and cylinder).  This group really likes the q-tip pointillism painting and they asked to do a lot of project with it last year, so they really enjoyed the stippling technique.  Stippling is one of my favorites as well!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Can You Find the Bully???

Phew, today was a long day!  I was up at 4:30 am because of my lovely animals...(You know, it never doesn't matter if the cats see me take my hair band off my wrist or how much stuff is on the counter where I set it.  They seem to have RADAR!)  I had a full day of classes, then after school, and then I stayed for an extra hour to clean up the mess I have been calling my desk for the past few days!

Here is my first anti-bullying bulletin board! (Hopefully I will get the second one up tomorrow, as well as the anti-bullying slogans.)  This one is my "Where's Waldo?" inspired board:


Here are some of my kiddos working on their "Mixing Colors" worksheet in kindergarten.  Next, the kindergartners will be learning about the different kinds of lines and we will do a primary line painting.


Today I meant to do paper marbling with my after school group, but the small gas station on the way to school was out of plain shaving cream and I didn't think I had enough in school for a large group.  I also wanted to test it out before letting the kids do it as it's been a long time since I've done paper marbling.  The last time I did it, I used watered down tempera paint, however after surfing on Pinterest, I found many people use liquid watercolors or liquid food coloring.  Since I don't have liquid watercolors in stock right now (that may be the next thing I buy with my Artsonia funds!) I am going to try this paper marbling excursion with the food coloring.  Hopefully next week I'll be able to tackle that project after school.

Anyways, today we did a one-day project.  This was a kit that we ordered with grant funds from S&S Worldwide called "Ancient Cultures Jute Baskets."  I wasn't sure if the 13 kids who signed up for my project would be into it as it's just "boring basket weaving" but they actually really liked it!  A few of them got creative by weaving their baskets tighter to change the shape, and some added beads.  They asked if we could do it again so I plan to do some different variations with other kits that I have and Pinterest ideas.  They also said they would like to sew, so I may do a burlap banner sewing project with them as well.  Here are some photos of the finished products!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Primary Colors and Rainbows!

Only three more post assessments to go...

Today I had two kindergarten classes who started my color unit.  In kindergarten I teach students the primary and secondary colors.  Today they learned what a primary color is and what happens when you mix the primary colors.  Today's lesson, "Mixing Colors," is by far one of my favorite lessons to do with the kinders!  They are always so amazed at the "magic" that happens when you mix the primary colors together.  At the end of the day, I always receive at least two or three comments from other teachers who talk about how amazed the kids are by the project when they get back to their rooms!

First we talk about the primary colors and listen to Greg Percy's song, "The Red Yellow Blues."  Then I pass out my mixing colors worksheet.  Everyone writes their names on the paper somewhere and then one at a time, we work on finding the primary color words.  I have the students point to red first and then I pass out red model magic clay, giving each student a small ball of it.  The students are asked to take a small piece of the clay and stick it to the box under the word.  Then we do the same for yellow and blue.  After that, I have the students split up their leftover clay into two balls.  Before I let the students mix red and yellow, I ask them to guess what color they think it will make, and so on and so forth with the other two secondary colors.  I always love hearing them oooh and ahhh over this!
I included a line over the box where they put the secondary color to write the color word.  I only use this if we have extra time at the end of class.  Most of my kindergartners take FOREVER when it comes to writing something like their name this early in the year, so I use this as a time stretcher if needed.

One of the proud students at the end of class!  This project always requires my whole attention so I wasn't able to get any pictures during the actual process of mixing colors today.

I also had one class of first graders today, and we started my rainbow unit.  Every year I do this just a little bit different because there are just soooooo many project ideas for rainbows!  Today, we started off with a smartboard rainbow sorting game and we listed to Greg Percy's song, "Roy G. Biv."  Then I had the students color a rainbow bracelet so they will always remember.  During my lunch period (because I never have a lunch period where all I do is eat...I'm sure many of you can relate!), I laminated their bracelets, cut them out, and added some velcro so they will be easy on, easy off for the kids.
Here is one of the bracelets they colored on my can see the little velcro circles I stuck to the band.  
Here are some finished projects from my first two days of the extended day program.  Our school received a grant to do fun, but educational, after school activities until 4:30.  The students receive about 35 minutes of homework time before choosing one of three activities.  It's always a pretty rough decision for the kids to make and I have been working on some fun art activities for them to participate in during the year.  I usually have to compete with a cooking project (which the kids LOVE) or an outdoors activity.  For my first project, we did gyotaku prints on black paper with metallic/fluorescent paint details.

This one is my example I was working on with the kids....I'll hold onto it to use later when I do another similar project to demonstrate painting the seaweed and such.