Monday, February 23, 2015

African Masks

This is a great lesson to combine the topic of African Masks with symmetry.  The kids love this project because it is very successful and stunning with the high contrast colored construction paper.  Here are the steps: 
1. Have the kids choose 2 colors of construction 
paper and fold them together in half  
2. Draw half of an African Mask on the folded side of the paper
3.  Cut out all of the shapes and save all of the pieces.  It's like putting together a puzzle.
4.  Fold the large tan paper in half so we have a line of symmetry
5.  Glue the two different colored face halves along the line of symmetry
6.  Now, put all of the pieces together using the opposite colors on each side.  
7. Lastly, add small details like dots and small lines with black and white paint and glue some raffia to the mask for added interest.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Chinese Dragons

We rang in the Chinese New Year with some colorful paper dragons! I showed this short video about the New Year and we talked about some customs and traditions of the Chinese culture. Next, I gave students a handout showing different dragon faces so they could get an idea about what shapes to cut out. Here are some of our finished dragons:

Friday, January 16, 2015

Kaleidoscope Drawings

     This was a great project that I basically invented for my annual Picture The Music unit. I generally try to come up with projects that are more abstract in subject matter and which experiment with different color techniques. I found an awesome video on You Tube showing an up close shot of a kaleidoscope set to some music. PERFECT! We folded our papers in half 3x to divide it into triangles. Next, I showed the students how to use simple shapes and lines in each triangle to create a design that is symmetrical. We used sharpie for the drawing and watercolor markers for the coloring. When they were finished, I sandwiched the drawing between 2 wet pieces of plain paper to get the colors to bleed together. I pressed them with heavy stacks of paper for a day. Then, these beautiful colorful drawings were revealed! And the bonus? I have a ton of colorful tie-dye paper that I can use with other projects! It's a win-win. 

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Miro Drawings

     Drawing to music in the style of Miro! This lesson went flawlessly. There's something magical that happens when you combine music with art. Before the lesson, I demonstrated how to draw lines and shapes which represent the music...large shapes when the music is loud, small soft lines and shapes when the music is soft. For this lesson I added in some 'silly people' like you would see in Miro's paintings. I feel like 1st graders would be able to relate to the silly, whimsical figures. To give the drawings a real 'painterly' effect, we painted water over the marker lines. To add color, we used crayons and watercolors for the background. I'll post a finished painting soon! 
Oh....before we began, I showed this AMAZING Eric Carle video on You Tube called I See A Song.  Where has this video been all my life (ok, a bit dramatic! Lol!).  

Friday, January 9, 2015

Easy Tie-Dye

     Love, love the instant gratification this project allows. I've done this at my summer art camps before, but decided to use it with my Picture The Music lesson with one of my 5th grade classes. Take a piece of tissue paper and fold it many times until it's about a 3" square. Dip the ends into some liquid water colors and watch the colors bleed together. This is also a great way to let the kids be all 'science-y' and learn about absorption and color mixing. They were encouraged to think about what colors would best represent the song based on the mood or the feelings they got fr the song. They drew an abstract line and shape drawing that I plan to adhere the tissue paper to when they dry so the drawing will show through the paper. I'll post pics when we are done.