Wednesday, April 2, 2014

In the Art Room: A Guest Post While I'm Away!

Hey guys! Just back from the NAEA conference in San Diego...and attempting to recover from that awesome experience! I'll be back with you soon with plenty of photos and stories from this past weekend but until then, please enjoy this post written by fellow art teacher buddy Faigie!

I am so thrilled to be filling in for Cassie while she has a great time in San Diego. 
I like to bill myself as the art teacher with no art background.
I do have a Masters in Early Childhood Education and have always been extremely involved in the progressive art part of early ed, and have even given workshops to teach teachers how to incorporate good art into their classrooms.
It was only this year however,  that I became a bona fide art teacher, teaching in a new private school that only goes up to first grade so far.
Even though I have a passion for kids and their art, I've always  particularly loved collage. I really see how with a little bit of direction and some suggestive materials collage brings out the best of children's creativity.
This year I only have the first grade and Kindergarten and usually try to do different activities with them.
For this activity however, I decided to give both of them collage. For the first grade  I added a bit of a twist.
I cut out some basic shapes using the large shaped hole punchers to get nice round circles. I also decided to add some hexagons for interest. 

When the children came in I sat them down and held up each shape individually. We discussed what each of those shapes made them think of.
I wanted them to go to the table thinking and to  create "something",  not just a design.
It's obvious from their work that they really did try to use their pieces as part of a larger picture.
I also added their own descriptions of their pictures to their artwork which I find really adds dimension.

Some of course made one larger picture while others made a few smaller objects on their papers.
Then came the first graders.
When they came in I went through the same discussion that I had had with the Kindergarteners but, I added one thing.
I had found a bunch of patterned papers that I had with my art stuff and I told them that they had to pick out a piece of a pattern from one of the papers and incorporate it into their collages.

I found that many of the children got their ideas from their pieces they cut out and built on their artwork from there (which was the idea).
The one below was a squirrel trying to get an acorn from a tree.

 In this one, the little girl wrote her own description of what was going on in her picture. 

One of the things I love so much about collage is that there is so much variety that can be added to each collage activity that only allows for more and more creativity. There are also many levels of sophistication in many of them and I know this can be done with all ages.
And now for my disclaimer:
I can never compete with Cassie's wardrobe  and I don't intend to.
HOWEVER, I didn't think it would be nice to finish off a post on her blog without showing you a picture of what THIS art teacher wore (or wears).
So here is my picture below of what I wear (or change into) in EVERY art class.

Faigie Kobre is a new  art teacher in a fledgling private school . She also gives art classes in her home. She runs a blog called EduArt 4 Kids teaching parents and teachers how to give their kids  great art that will help them think. She believes that everyone  can and should do art. She has a FREE report that you can get  now called "The REAL reason most people can't draw a straight line, plus 5 tips to make sure your child will". Even if you are a real artist, a distinction that she does not claim to have, you will find it interesting and may even help you help the parents of your students.


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