Thursday, December 18, 2014

Music Videos - Holiday Edition

Music videos are back!  For this quick Fun Friday lesson, I gave students a sheet of paper with lyrics printed at the bottom.  It was their job to draw a picture of what those lyrics looked like.  I'm super excited about this idea, and think both videos turned out awesome.  Make sure you watch both!

Between-Break Puzzle Incentive

The weeks between Thanksgiving and winter break can be stressful and chaotic, and sometimes we all need a little extra boost.  With this in mind, I came up with a puzzle incentive for classes that do a great job.  Ordinarily, outstanding classes earn stickers.  Between breaks, we earned "performance pieces" for the 25 x 25 inch puzzle I created - a total of 25 pieces.  At the end of an excellent class, I chose a student to pull a piece from the bag and put it on our labeled grid.  The end result was a lot of fun and the kids got a kick out of it.  Here's a behind the scenes look at how the whole thing got started.

First I drew it on my tablet and projected it onto bigger paper.

Then I outlined everything in Sharpie.

Slapped some watercolor on it.
Chopped it up into 5 inch squares.

Labeled each part so we knew where to put it back together.
Flattened it.  Shout out to Football-Throwing Turkey adding a little extra weight.

The whole thing was finished in under two weeks!

4th Grade - In the Year 3000

For this project, we looked at illustrations by French artist Villemard, who, in 1910, imagined what the world would look like in the year 2000.  The pictures are funny, strange, or prophetic, and really make you think about where we might be heading in another hundred years.  For our art project, fourth graders imagined what the world might look like in a thousand years, and drew detailed pictures with interesting inventions and bizarre new sports or games.  So here it is, America:  your future.  Get ready.

3rd Grade - Inventions (Changing the World)

I very much enjoy this project.  We start by telling the third graders that they are about to change the world.  The world's greatest inventions may have started out as a silly-sounding idea that could only work with magic, but where there is a will, there's a way.  We tie the whole project into problem solving.  First, the students pick a few problems that need to be solved, then invent ways to solve it.  Then, their job is to create an advertisement for their invention that they can share with "investors" at our investment fair.  The fair closes out the lesson and acts as a way for students to share their ideas with classmates and practice communicating the meaning of their project.  The investor classmates are then free to pretend like they're millionaires and give imaginary money to anyone with a great idea they'd like to see realized.

5th Grade - Flying Names

5th graders learned about 1 point perspective with this name project.  First, we made our names, nicknames, or initials in bubble letters on our papers, leaving enough room to add the important vanishing point.  Then, we learned how to connect the corners of the letters to the vanishing point so that the letters look like they're shooting out and making them appear 3D.  We finished it off by adding details inside the letters that tell about us.

Monday, December 15, 2014

6th Grade - Updated Portraits inspired by Kehinde Wiley

I'm always excited to introduce new, contemporary artists to my students, especially when they're as awesome and important as Kehinde Wiley.  To start, we delve deep into discussions about stereotypes and perceptions as we look at examples of Wiley's work.  Then we view his work as a reflection of modern time.  For the project, I pick out prints (this one, this one, or this one) of some traditional artwork from long ago, and it's up to the 6th graders to update what's happening in the painting for 2014.  6th graders are experts on modern culture, and their ideas on how to update the paintings are inspired.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

2nd Grade - Mood Masks

Second graders get some practice interpreting with this collage project.  We start with a quick discussion about interpretation with things like language and facial expressions before we move onto the art world.  As a class, we talk about what colors and lines match which emotions, then use that information to make our own "mood masks" with colored construction paper.  The goal is for the students to give clues with shapes, lines, and colors so that others can accurately interpret the mood they chose for their mask.  The cool details really put some of these projects over the top.

Kindergarten - Invisible Portraits

One of Ohio's Visual Arts standards for kindergarten deals with depicting what can't be seen visually and depicting it.  For this project, kindergartners learned about portraiture and drawing from life, while also using their imagination to change the portrait up a little bit.  Some students drew their partner as firemen or princesses, added themselves as friends in the background, or added all sorts of different details from memory.  I really like this project and the kids really seem to have fun with it.