Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Art Teacherin' 101: Episode 9

I recently created this Cursive Writing Dry Erase Board for a couple of reasons: it opens up another activity for my early-finishers and it introduces my students to the fine motorin' fun of cursive handwriting which is no longer apart of our state curriculum. In this Art Teacherin' 101, I'll share with you what options my early finishers have in my art room. I'll also show you how I created this fun and cheap Cursive Writing Dry Erase Board!
Just a little back history about me, I didn't attend an elementary school that offered art. In fact, I didn't have art classes until 7th grade! So my art fix came in the form of those purple ditto sheets with lines and lines of cursive writing practice. I loved getting my kitten mittens on those cool purple worksheets (y'all have to be a person of a certain age to even understand what it is I'm talkin' about!). Sadly, cursive writing was removed from our curriculum a couple of years ago and replaced with keyboarding. KEYBOARDING, Y'ALL. Don't they know the proven benefits to having children write in cursive?! So I'm on an art teacherin' mission to bring it back:
Now, I didn't come up with this idea of cursive writing boards. You can purchase them on several websites. However, the cheapest I've seen them is $6. Picking up those lined boards for a dollar at Target was a great buy. It took me maybe 5 minutes to write up the letters and paint with ModPodge. 
I'll be interested to see how my students take to this new early finisher activity. Many of them are already fascinated with cursive writing and want to learn. I'm kinda thinking that introducing them to calligraphy might be fun as well. I had a set as a kid and it was one of my favorite things. 
What are some of your favorite early finisher activities in your art room? Would you ever give Cursive Writing Dry Erase Boards a go? 

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  1. Joanna6/29/2016

    Oh my gosh!! I was JUUUUSSST talking to my husband about wanting to bring cursive writing and calligraphy into my classroom (somehow) next year!!! I love your idea! :) It'll have to wait until I come back from maternity leave, of course, but...once I'm back - it's on!! :)

    Thanks for sharing!!

  2. The struggle to keep those early finishers under control is real!! I like using imagination workouts (found on Pinterest). This year I'm adding peeling crayons in the early finisher box. I give out rainbow crayons (old crayons melted together into cool shapes) as art rewards so I always need peeled crayons. Love the cursive board idea too!

  3. Anonymous6/29/2016

    How many did you make and how do kids share when there's a bunch finished? Thanks!

  4. I LOVE U for bringing this up. Cursive is SO necessary for their fine motor skill development! I teach high school and have given extra points if they even attempted to write in cursive for visual journaling. And that among a couple of other things is what they do if they finish early...

  5. Anonymous6/29/2016

    Great idea! I have shapes, blocks,free draw paper with how to draw books and stencils, I Spy books, and geoboards(I use the loops for weaving potholders instead of rubber bands ) for my early finishers.

  6. I teach junior high art and I don't think they teach cursive in my district anymore either. How do they expect students to read cursive if they've never learned it?! There are lots of kids who can't read it (or tell time on an analog clock... But don't get me started on that one!!).

  7. I am so going to do this! Cursive for the little ones and simple brush lettering for my older students. I introduced brush lettering to my sixth graders last spring and they loved it. Thanks for the tip to check Target for the lined boards!

  8. I teach art at a K-2 school. I made a boggle station that I can use dry erase markers to change the letters weekly. Students use their own dry erase board to try and make a two, three, four letter word and so on out of the letters I out up. I also hide a word related to our art project and if the kids find the "secret word" they can earn a prize (usually a gold fish cracker or pencil)

  9. Kim Kennedy6/30/2016

    I LOVE this idea! I do believe in the importance of teaching cursive to children because of the many benefits it has. This coming school year will be my first year teaching K-6 (last year I taught a few 5th-7th grade classes). I am super excited and have already started accumulating things for my early finisher cart. I have dry erase boards, learn-to-draw activities, and some lacing cards so far. I am definitely going to add these cursive boards to my cart. Thanks for the great idea!

  10. Anonymous6/30/2016

    Great idea! Don't understand how kids of the future are expected to sign their name on documents if they don't know cursive!?-M3

  11. So great idea...
    Nice sharing.

  12. Anonymous7/15/2016

    Great idea, I printed out some calligraphy sheets with lines as well onto A3 then laminated them. CHEAP!!!! All as art teachers have the mandatory injection of "tight ass" when we graduate Uni. We now have a nice little pile for early finishers.


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