To make our sketchbooks, we used the following:
* Recycled manilla folders. The central office in my district was kind enough to send me a mountain of the ones they were going to otherwise recycle!
* 20 sheets of copy paper per folder.
* Dollar Store faux-duct tape. Works just as great for half the cost.
* Baseball card sleeves. For holding our Artist Trading Cards, thank you SO MUCH for the idea, Nic Hahn!
* Electric stapler. I picked one up off Amazon. Works like a dream going through the folder, papers and sleeve.
On the first day of sketchbook making, I gave the kids the folders and told them they could paint their folder either all warm or all cool colors. They could paint fast and furious or delicate and detailed but they had to have it done in 30 minutes. The following art class, when they came to art, I had already stapled the 20 sheets of paper and the baseball card sleeve into the folders. We were ready to start sketching!
For that we met in the "Jungle Lounge" in the art room (more details on this and my painted window to come). Once the sketchbooks and pencils were passed out, I did a palming activity with the children (video clip below). While their eyes were closed I played my rainstick and told them to imagine a rainstorm in a jungle. What are the animals doing? Is the wind blowing? Is the weather getting worse? When they opened their eyes, they were allowed to sketch at their seats or on the floor but they were not allowed to talk.
Most of these third grade students sketched without stopping for a good 45 minutes. I did ask them to take a break with me on the floor when I was finished with the taping. We chatted about our experience sketching so far (consensus: they LOVED it!) and how it would look during a normal art class. I plan to use this as an art class starter for the first 5-10 minutes of most art classes...I'll keep you posted.
At this point, I told the kids about Artist Trading Cards. These are baseball-sized works of art created by artists of all ages. I told the kids that their ATC cards were going to be kept in those baseball sleeves. I have a sign in my room that lists the Topic and the Media for the ATC cards. This week, it was "Tigers" and "Colored Pencils and Sharpies" (yes, we're on a tiger-kick. Lesson details to come!)So, those finished with their sketches, were allowed to start their ATC's.
The great thing about those sleeves is it's the perfect spot to keep unfinished ATC's!
"In my jungle, a mysterious animals is afraid of the rain and is hiding". ARE YOU KIDDING ME?! Love!
The kids absolutely loved their sketchbooks and I'm thrilled! I'll definitely keep y'all updated on their progress...but I gotta know:
Do you use sketchbooks in your art room? How? Any tips or tricks? Please share in the comments, friends!