|Unlike most students, this fourth grade dude opted for a moody evening sky. I love how well it works with this haunted looking castle.|
I recently discovered that if I need something, all I have to do is ask. For instance, I totally underestimated how much glue we would consume, er, use in the art room this year and only ordered one gallon. When that well ran dry, I simply sent out a school-wide email and within hours I had enough glue to put back together all of the dishes I've managed to break over the years. Thank goodness! My dishwasher is simply devouring those styrofoam plates!
This is also how I managed to acquire the four million toilet paper tubes we used for this castle building project. The only slight draw back to asking for stuff: you just might receive far more than imagined (shoot me an email if you'd like to become the proud new owner of six garbage bags of toilet paper tubes! They make great gifts -- the expression on the recipent's face is always one of pure confusion which I like to interpret as joy).
|Because our castle was apart of our study of Germany, I also incorporated some of Grimm's Fairy Tales into the mix. This young artist dude obviously was inspired by Rapunzel.|
|This artist had his work on display at our local art museum, The Frist Center for Visual Arts. Pretty sweet. My mom once taped my drawing to the fridge. Okay, I taped it to her fridge.|
Just exactly how where these amazing castle pieces created by fourth graders, aside from a gallon of glue and a ton of tubes? Well, lemme tell you:
- Like I said, this project was a study of castles in Germany. We focused on Schloss Neuschwanstein (where you can see a super brief history here) and the landscape of Bavaria. During our first couple of art classes, we talked color theory and sky painting.
2. Next up: Cloud painting. We use a bristle brush to create the cloud texture with an emphasis that clouds have a flat bottom (hey, just like the art teacher!) and a fluffy top (ha! art teacher wishes). I also chat about showing space by painting the clouds near the horizon smaller and have them increase in size as they climb up the page.
3. After a big fat hairy chat about the landscape of southwestern Germany, we tackle the land. The students were given three pieces of 18" X 6" paper in the following colors: white, light green and green. They were instructed to crumble each piece, smooth it out, and rub water based oil pastels over each. Then each piece of paper was given a stroke of water with a paint brush to help blend the oil pastels. I have found the Crayola Portfolio Oil Pastels work best for this.
4. Once those were dry, each of the three papers were torn lengthwise. Some students opted to create three-dimensional mountains. This was done by taking a small torn piece of paper, coloring it heavily in oil pastels, laying it on the mountain and smearing the oil pastel from the paper to the mountain. From there, the land was glued to the sky painting.
5. After all of that landscaping, we were finally ready for our castle building. I kept the directions very basic because I was curious to see what the students would come up with. What I did tell them was to cut a slit up the back of the tube and fold each cut line about 1/4". This would be where the glue would go to attach to the landscape. This is also how the gnomes were glued down in my project posted last week.
6. For the top of the castle, short cuts were made and every other one was folded down. Easy.
7. The kids came up with the idea of the draw bridge. When one got the idea to glue a "chain" to hold the bridge, the rest just had to do the same.
|In case you mustache, this is Mustache Kingdom.|
8. Here's how they were shaping up after a couple of days. Once glued down, they were ready to be painted.
9. Students were to paint a base coat onto their castles. I offered them black paint but a handful wanted something a little more colorful. And sparkly. What's a castle without glitter, after all?
10. After the base coat was applied, students sponge painted gray paint onto their castle for a rock like texture. When one student used the back of his paint brush to create bricks, the rest of us all had a "why didn't I think of that?!" moment.
|Yes, that's a flying PopTart/Taco/cat-with-a-rainbow-shooting-out-it's-butt thing. Not sure if that's from some cartoon or imagined. Most likely the effects of glue consumption.|
11. Once castles were complete, the real fun began. Our castle either had to have a flag and/or a shield. After a chat about Grimm's Fairy Tales, I encouraged the addition of characters to the scene. Those that decided to not include characters and finished early wrote stories about their kingdom.
|I'm kinda on this kick where I add that super fine glitter to all of the paint. You can see that shine in this pair of castles.|
|These kids have the funniest imaginations. I love their silliness.|
|Last photo, I swear! This little amazing artist had the genius idea to add puffy paint vines to her castle. I'm rather smitten with her dragons.|
And there you have it! Many moons, tubes and a gallon o' glue later, you've got some of the coolest castles in all of Tennessee. Now, that I've got all the glue a girl could ever want, I'm thinking of sending out an email asking for coins. Tell me what you think of this:
"Dear Teachers, The students will be using loose change. Would you mind sending any and all pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters to the art room? Thank you!"
With all these generous teachers of mine, this outta easily cover my Spring Break vacay to Daytona Beach. Art Teachers Gone Wild, here I come!