Popsicles and pizza! For our last day of art, we painted these amazing watercolors of popsicles. I used to have "Popsicle Thursdays" when I was teaching in Qatar. (Thursdays were their Fridays because Fridays are holy days in the Middle East. And Sundays are Mondays!) Each Thursday we would do some kind of artwork based on popsicles or popsicle-esque type treats. It was great fun, so I was glad to host it again, even if only for a day.
We drew our popsicles with guidance from Mr. Rob at Art for Kids Hub. After watercoloring them, we danced to our favorite Koo Koo Kanga Roo song. If only you could hear how loudly they sing this song while dancing around my room, it's so cute and hilarious! "Cheeeeeeeesssseeeee onnnnnn mmmyyyy ffffiiiiinnnnnggggeeeerrrrrsssssss!" So funny!!!!
My Kindergarten students researched Richard Diebenkorn's work for next year's art show. This project took them a while. We interspersed this work with projects for their Celebration of Japan day and Free Make--the kindergarteners love a good Free Make day!
To create work in the essence of Diebenkorn, the students used a variety of (kid-friendly) materials. They first drew out their lines and shapes with black crayon. Then they sort of loosely filled in their shapes with oil pastels in the colors of their choosing. And finally, they washed over all of the shapes with watercolors and temperas with additional colors. Don't they look fabulous? I would never have thought to incorporate Diebenkorn into my Kindergarten class, but next year's theme really challenged me. And I'm so glad it did!!!
For the Kindergartener's Celebration of Japan day, we made giant koi fish. They were huge! I couldn't even take a picture of the whole thing. They worked in teams of 8 to color and decorate their fish in a variety of colors. We watched a video about Koi fish and looked at lots and lots of pictures of them. I love making big fish!!
For First Grade's art show project, we veered off the theme path just slightly. Loosely inspired by Thiebaud's cake paintings, we traveled to the East Coast and Florida where we learned about Miami artist, Romero Britto (who's actually from Brazil). The colors in his work really excite the students. And because his work is now on t-shirts and shoes and shower curtains, they can identify it easily. I even received a bracelet as an end-of-the-year gift from two of my students with a Romero Britto heart on it! So awesome!
For this project, the students worked on their background first: drawing it out with Sharpie and filling it in with oil pastels. They made sure to vary the colors and create patterns that related to Britto's work. Then, they watercolored cupcake designs that they drew out with Sharpie. We glued the cupcakes to cardboard so that they floated off the page a bit. Each piece of artwork is perfectly square. So I'm sure they will hang beautifully!
Chalk pastels make me crazy because they get everywhere, but the students had a blast!
Even when you tell them, just use your pointer finger to blend areas . . . Somehow their whole hands are involved!! But they were so beautiful!
The Fourth Graders looked at work by Wayne Thiebaud before launching into their art show painting projects. You will notice that the older the students get, the less pictures I have . . . They are shy, and also take a lot longer to complete things compared to the younger ones. The Grade 4 students worked on these cake paintings for at least 3 weeks. Then we worked on some one-off collage projects.
Fifth Grade has been working on their art show projects for close to two months. They researched costuming worn by kings and queens all over the world. Then, they had to imagine themselves in a royal costume of their choosing and create a self-portrait in the traditional style. Each student completed a painting that is 18 inches x 24 inches. And while this strays from our theme just a bit. These paintings can re-enter the theme by referencing Marie Antoinette (even though some of the paintings might refer to a different time period), and proudly exclaiming: Let them eat cake!
Aren't they gorgeous? I just love them. The students worked really hard on these pieces!
#mylovelysixthgraders accomplished so much in our last few months together!
Because they loved clay so much, I let them do personal projects in clay. They looked at other artists for inspiration, but for the most part had free range to do whatever they wanted. They made all sorts of items and took everything home almost immediately once things came out of the kiln!
Our next piece was based on a project I had seen in another school. We took black and white photos that they hand-tinted with colored pencils and placed them into a heavily patterned background. While I think they managed the photos and printing alright, something got lost in the composition. Maybe we needed more repetition, like with the photograph or something. I don't know. Perhaps more practice with this project will prove it to be successful in the future! But the process was thoroughly enjoyable, which was awesome!
We ended the year with my most favorite project of all time . . . Suits of armor! I didn't get to do this with my middle cohort of the Grade 6 students that I taught (they were too busy with holiday projects), but the first group got to do it and now this last group! And I think they did an awesome job!
After looking at slides of armor from past civilizations and cultures, the students had to create their own armor that represented their time period and lives. Then, we put them into a digital background of their own choosing as the final documentation.
Working in groups, the students had to come up with a cohesive theme. Then, using cardboard, create their armor and costuming. This usually takes several weeks, even though I see them everyday.
They love this project!!!! But I have to remember next year to make sure that none of them paint anything green. Pistol's finished piece looks fabulous (he's with the AT-AT, above), but he's missing his lightsaber. He painted it green and, because of the green screen, it plum disappeared! 😱
I will miss all of my Grade 6 students. They were so much fun to hang out with this year!
Both parades went off without a hitch! It was so much fun to take part in these two giant happenings! I wrote all about the experience here. Have a look-see!!
They have such an amazing collection of items! I can't wait to go back and walk through the museum again. I was not able to read everything in one visit. And we stayed well over an hour past their closing time!
There's a small art gallery inside the Black History Museum and a few paintings by Eluster Richardson were featured. They were so beautiful! Quilts and quilt makers and young people. I encourage you to visit his website: here. The paintings above and below are from his Soul of a Quilt series.
Below are the links to all of the past blogposts I wrote about the art making we did in Brookwood's Lower School Art Studio! Thank you for all of the memories from the 2017 - 2018 teaching year! Enjoy!!
And you are currently reading Quarter 4.