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Tuesday, November 30, 2010

American Sign Language Drawings

I was inspired to teach this lesson after viewing contour hand drawings completed by A. Jackson's students at Thank you Ms. Jackson!

The 6th Grade students learned the origin of American sign language, and they learned the ASL alphabet. The students identified the sign language symbols in their names/nicknames and created drawings showing these symbols.

Textured Mugs

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Making a Difference by Creating Art: The Fundred Dollar Bill Project

During Thanksgiving week, we tend to think about what we have and what we are thankful for. While it is important to be grateful and to reflect on our blessings in life, I believe Thanksgiving is a great time to think about needs others may have and how we can meet those needs. I heard about the Fundred Dollar Bill Project ( while Reading an art education journal last month. The project was started by artist Mel Chin, who hopes to raise 300,000,000 "fundreds" (drawings of one hundred dollar bills designed by students) that he will take to Congress in an effort to exchange them for the $300,000,000 needed to neutralize the lead in the soil in New Orleans. Curently 30% of the children in New Orleans have lead poisoning, and this is a preventable problem. The students learned about Hurricane Katrina (many of them were very young when the hurricane hit in 2005), and they learned about the destruction the hurricane caused. The students were enthusiastic about wanting to help the children in New Orleans, and I was greatly blessed by their empathy and thoughtfulness in creating these "fundreds."

This students drew the "tree of good hope"

This student drew a house on wheels that he wants to bring to people in New Orleans who have lost their homes to Hurricane Katrina.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

5th Grade magazine bowls

The fifth Grade students learned the craft of creating coiled bowls out of the pages of recycled magazines. Not only is this project economical (the only materials used are recycled magazines and paper mache glue), but it teaches the students to reuse/renew/recycle!

Glazing and Painting

This week in ceramics class the students learned the difference between PAINTING a ceramic peice and GLAZING a cermic peice. I told the students the benefits and detriments of both mediums, and I allowed them to choose to work at either the glaze station OR the painting station. As a side note to students and parents, all glazes are lead free and dinnerware safe.

Why are we drawing when this is ceramics class?

The students in the all-star academy ceramics class have been adding drawings to their sketchbooks in order to plan for future clay projects. As an artist, all of my ideas begin in my sketchbook, a place where I revise, rework, and transform my plans for larger scale projects. My sketchbook is a place I return to when I need new inspiration, new direction, or new options. As an art eductor, I believe it is my responsibility to teach students the vital role of the sketchbook in the creative process.

Sketchbooks are:

1. A place where we can create concrete plans, including the steps, processes, and materials needed for larger scale projects

2. A place to gather and synthesize images and ideas

3. A place where we can visually document events, people, and places. It is a place where we can remember.

4. A place where we can work out creative problem solving processes

Friday, November 19, 2010

Color Theory with Andy Warhol

After viewing the prints of pop artist Andy Warhol, the students created pencil drawings of everyday objects. In square #1 students painted a primary color scheme, #2 an analogous color scheme, #3 tints/tones, and #4 complimentary colors. The students applied the color mixing knowledge gained from the previous lesson in order to complete this project.

2nd Grade Concentric Cirlces

The second grade students were inspired to create these oil pastel drawings after viewing the painting "concentric circles" by Russian artist Wassily Kandinsky.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Dancing Giraffes

The First Grade Students read the Book Giraffes Can't Dance by Guy Parker Rees, and they learned that giraffes really CAN dance! The students were inspired to create the multimedia artworks below in response to the story.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Ladies of Liberty!

In honor of Veterans day the first grade students learned about the significance and history of the Statue of Liberty. The students used their creativity in creating these collages of the Statue of Liberty.