Sunday, August 28, 2016

There's a New Sign in the Art Room

There's a new sign in my art room. Born out of frustration. I started a new project with my 1st, 2nd and 3rd graders on Wednesday. I decided to do a unit on Architecture. I have hundreds of these packing corners left from last year that I never got to use since I went out on medical leave.

I have done some awesome projects with these before.

This time I came up with using them to make houses. Here's my sample.

It occurred to me that storing them, since I would have 12 classes doing it, 14 if you count that 2 grade levels had split a class, was going to create a storage problem. So I explained to students we would glue the bottom on when they were ready to take it home.

So why the new sign? Well, since 3rd graders are the last class in the room, I let students leave their work on their tables to dry. The next morning as I was gathering them up, and late for a faculty meeting, I noticed 3 out of 4 tables of students did NOT write their names! To make it less confusing for when they return this week I marked each piece with the first letter of the table color.

Now, I would never throw out a student's art work. However, I would really like to let them think I did for maybe 5 minutes. After all if they don't value their work, why should I? But after much reflection and help from the Art Teachers on Facebook I realized it was probably my fault. I have a system in place-no name-no paint brush. But it was the end of the day, I was feeling rushed. I wanted them to have as much time to paint as possible and handing out paint brushes was going to slow things down. (Paint brushes were on the trays with the paint.) Students with their name on their project will get a reward.

So I came up with this NEW sign.
I wrote the numbers 1-6 on the tables with Sharpies (Magic Eraser will get the numbers off). I opted out of using stickers because the students will peel them off, piece by piece........
Now ALL I need to do is call out numbers and I have student helpers!

One student will be responsible for table folders. One student will distribute materials or supplies. One can collect what is necessary or set up for the next group. One will clean and one will inspect to make sure students have written their name or just inspect the area to make sure things have been put away. Using the new sign on Friday had me wondering why I hadn't done this sooner. Well, actually years ago I had table captains, but I'm bad about changing out names and having lists. This sign will be easier for me as all I need to do is rotate the numbers.

So there you have it! A new sign for the art room and hopefully a less frazzled teacher. I do plan to post more about our lovely houses when they are finished. I have a bunch of interesting things they will be able to add. And of course this awesome book to share with them. Click here for details.

I'm a solutions type of person and always willing to try something new to work "smarter and not harder".  What have you done in your art room lately that has helped you to be working smarter? Please share!!
Thanks for reading!

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