Sunday, August 26, 2018

Art Chopped

 Last week's blog post was about a really fun product from Faber-Castell called Creativity Can. While it's not quite the same thing consider making your own Creativity Bag/Box activity?

After all, how many of you have stuff you just don't know what to do with it? Popsicle sticks, bottle tops, stickers, buttons, pom-poms, scrap paper, other odds and ends? Or weird donations?

Why not put all that stuff in bags/boxes for your students and have them create art?

This lesson is a take off of a cooking show, Food Chopped, where contestants get a basket of food and their goal is to make a spectacular three-course meal.

I got the idea from a workshop that I attended in Seattle at the NAEA Conference.
 The presenter was Jen Dahl, the president of the WAEA.  

We did the project as a competition just like the show, my partner was Emily Samuels. 

Back at school, I filled bags with a really odd assortment of things from my art room (see photo at the top). It was at the end of the school year and this was part of my effort to pack up the room for the summer. My 2nd-4th graders got the opportunity to do this project. And I have already been asked this year if I plan to do it again, as it was so much fun! BTW YES! Totally plan to do it again!

I think it's important to give children unstructured art opportunities to have a chance to explore. I have also from time to time given them free art with leftover materials. For those of you that like giving students free choices to create in art all the time consider exploring TAB (teaching to artistic behavior) or Play Based Art Teaching with George Szekely.

Was gonna plug the fact that at the FAEA conference in October there is a workshop Art Chopped, but it's already full! Guaranteed to be a lot of fun!!

Soooo to recap from last week if you have a great budget and can afford the Creativity Can from Faber-Castell:GO FOR IT!  If not, make your own!

Thanks for Reading!

Sunday, August 19, 2018

Creativity in a Can

I am on the Teacher Advisory Committee for Faber-Castell. A few years back I received an email that asked if I was planning to attend the NAEA conference. And would I be interested in attending a meeting with other art teachers to give some feedback on products that I use with my art classes. As a "thank you" for sharing with them I would receive FREE merchandise! Totally worth my time! The people that work for this company are the very sweetest people and quite generous with getting their fabulous product out there. 
Last school year I was sent a class box of their Creativity in a Can. I decided to share this with an intermediate class that earned the most Depp $ for the year. (Depp $ are part of my reward system for good behavior and correct answers. They can use the $ to shop from the treasure chest.)

Each student in the 4th grade class received a can. Check out all the cool supplies that were inside! There was even a small tube of glue included. I put out scissors, crayons and extra glue for them. The directions were to have fun and use your imagination. There is no right or wrong way to be creative.

The students had a blast! They totally enjoyed the freedom to create from all the different items included in the can. Being in a Title One school doesn't always allow for such a variety of materials.

I really enjoyed watching them get creative and work to figure out how and what they would do with their cans and all the little goodies inside.

Unfortunately this runs a bit on the expensive side for my budget but I can see this being a great product for small groups such as children who are home schooled, scout troops, church groups or daycare. Cans can be shared for collaborative projects. There can be friendly competitions.

There are many possibilities for some creative thinking outside the can with this product from Faber-Castell!   

Thanks for Reading!


Sunday, August 12, 2018

First Week Back!

My newly decorated cabinets, thanks to a parent who donated a big bag of rolls of vinyl. I have no clue how to use a Cricut so I made all the patterns by hand and just cut them out myself (the old fashion way...). The word: paper was done on the Cricut by my daughter. She also did a couple of words for me to stick on my other cabinets. Thank you Stephanie!

I'm planning on starting off the first week of school teaching about lines.

My 3rd to 5th graders are going to do 3D line sculptures.

Above is my example. We will explore the meaning of sculpture and talk about how it is viewed from all 4 sides.
 Students will get to pick one twisteez wire, one button, one bead, one pipe cleaner and one thin wire. And they will get a piece of packing foam to do their design on. They may cut the twisteez wire and swap pieces with their neighbors.

Our Reading Specialist gave me this book The Straight Line Wonder by Mem Fox at the end of last year and it is adorable. It's about 3 straight lines that are friends and how one of the straight lines wants to express himself and try out other types of lines. You can click on the title to find it on Amazon, it's a little expensive so maybe you can find someone who has a copy to lend you.

 After reading the book I plan to hand out black strips of paper (18x1") and show the students how to use it to make different lines. Then they can staple one end down to white paper (18x3"), give their line a hat and do some lines to represent movement. I'm planning this for k-2nd. I think it will be something quick and easy to do on the first day of art.

First week back I assign students to seats (it helps me to remember their names). We go over rules and we chat a bit about our summer. I love to gush at students and tell them how tall they got over the summer and how great they look.  Soooo I'm kind of looking forward to tomorrow....... but I'm pretty sure all us teachers could use another week or two to gear up for the NEW YEAR!

Thanks for Reading! And have a great year!

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Sense of Accomplishment

I have a great sense of accomplishment as far as how my summer vacation was spent.
It was important to me to work on becoming stronger (my back surgery was over 2 years ago and I don't want to use a cane anymore). I decided yoga was the answer. The change it has made has been worth every penny. The aerial sling is used to help me balance and get a deeper stretch.

Cleaning out my house was another accomplishment that was a long overdue. It's actually a new craze called Swedish Death cleaning. Which boils down to- get rid of your clutter because your children really don't want your stuff.  Soooo basically I cleaned out, donate, sold and dumped lots of STUFF!

We also put in new carpets and tile. That was a big job to empty out my sewing/craft room. But it looks great! And, yes that is a pencil dress hanging up on the door. A friend of mine grabbed it when another friend was giving some clothes away. SCORE!

Visited a few museums over the summer for some incredible inspiration. The Clyde Butcher: Visions of Dali's Spain was amazing. There was a slide presentation that had Dali's art on one side and a photo of what inspired the art on the other side. This would be a great lesson on surrealism. I'm planning on having students use photographs from old books or magazines and add their own art to it, making surreal images.

Also went up to Ocala to The Appleton Museum of Art. I actually won 2nd place in their cellphone photography contest.
 My prize was a 1 year membership, a really fun photography book and a museum quality canvas of my photo.

In June I attended a FAEA summer workshop that had an Asian theme.
 BTW Florida peeps conference registration starts Monday, August 6th AND Cassie Stephens will be one of our keynote speakers! I will be doing 2 workshops. Puppet Making and Hat Making!

And what's a summer without doing a prop for my favorite community theater? I made Milky White for an upcoming production of Into the Woods. Then I decided to do a little photo session with her.....
I did a presentation for docents at the Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art. It focused on how to engage students in activities in an art museum.

I also had training on Trauma Informed Care, a program which we will be bringing to our students. This was eye opening and hopefully something that will benefit everyone!

Did some reading and lots of binge watching on Netflixs, Hulu and Amazon......

In less then 10 hours I'm back to work for teacher's planning week and students will be back on the 13th. I feel pretty good on all the countless chores I brought up to date around the house and hope to continue to stay organized and clutter free.....

Now it's time to turn my brain back on and plan for some lessons. I'm going to focus on lines. k-2nd will do paper lines and 3rd-5th will do lines with wire and air dry clay. Rules will be a super quick review with 2nd-5th. Should be interesting....

With all I accomplished this summer, I just couldn't get myself to sit still in front of my computer to blog. I'm really sorry about that, there were many fun activities I did at the end of the school year to share. And I will as I get into the whole back to school/work groove!

Thanks for Reading!!

I would love to hear how your summer is going!