Thursday, October 27, 2016

In the Art Room: Sandra Silberzweig Selfies with Third Grade

I'm doing something new this winter: an art show with Artome. If you aren't familiar, it's an organization that will frame student art work and completely transform you school into an art museum for parents to enjoy and purchase the framed works of art. I'm having each of my kindergarten through fourth graders create self-portraits as I kinda think that is something all parents would want to keep forever. If you follow me here, you've seen a little of our progress. I'll be creating a video'ed lesson for each of these self portrait units. And if you wanna stay up to date on those, you can subscribe here
For third grade, I decided to introduce them to the artist Sandra Silberzweig and her fantastically colorful works of art. I love them so! The kids have loved the process of creating their abstract selfies so far. 
Here's the video'ed lesson. Feel free to use it in your art teacherin'/makerin' setting.
 So far, we've done the glue portion. Someone recently suggested that mixing India ink with white glue works better. I also had black puffy paint on hand for the kids who created very fine details. The difference between the puff and glue is that the puffy paint dries with a high gloss finish and is, of course, more puffy. It also is harder to use as it doesn't come out of the bottles as easily. We had to take "hand breaks" to give our wee hand muscles a rest.
By the way, the chalk I am using in the video is a brand called KOSS. I have found it on Amazon...and it truly is the best and brightest chalk I have found to use. It isn't cheap...but we've used it for years. It is the same chalk we used to create our ceiling tiles!
When I share this video with my students, it will be divided up into two parts: one day drawing and gluing, the next chalking. I'm excited to throw color theory into this lesson.
I plan to have several of these printed (and laminated!) for the kids to use at their seats as they explore analogous colors. 
I'll be certain to keep y'all updated on their colorful progress...and stay tuned for more selfie lessons and videos to come!
 photo signature_zpsd10b3273.png


  1. Anonymous10/27/2016

    Hey. I do a lesson like this with first graders!
    We call it big face and they come out stellar. We just use thick black marker to draw first.
    I have done the color with chalk, oil pastels, and even watercolor! Awesome results. Have fun. You can see mine on my artsonia site if you want.

  2. Anonymous10/28/2016

    CASSIE!!! A word to the wise -- The Artome frames have a thin-ish plastic "glass" covering, as I'm sure you already know. I would be wary of the raised-glue and puffy paint not allowing the plastic to lay flat, causing ripples and bubbles. Also, I've found in years past that chalk tends to statically-stick to the frame's plastic, causing a blurry, glowing, not-so-clean final result. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but I thought I'd throw this out there before you invested too much time and then were disappointed at your show!!! (PS - I, too, did a self portrait theme for my last year's Artome show, thinking the exact same thing. Parents are more receptive to buy something that's OF their kid instead of some random drawing that they've seen come home a million times! My Artome rep told me that it was a brilliant idea as well, and my profits benefited from it! I even did family portraits with 2nd grade to help grab the attention of other family members! Good thinking!) ;)

  3. I love the colors and I will definitely be checking these pastels out.

  4. LOVE my Artome shows. I have noticed that their quality control has gone down a bit in the past few years since they recycle their unpurchased frames every show. This is only a problem for your ultra picky buyers! Another awesome thing about Artome is that they offer those reproductions, so if you have a parent who loves another students' work - you can ask for parent/student permission, and the buyer can purchase the reproduction and a frame! This has happened a few times for parents who want to decorate a specific room or business! Good luck!

  5. Anonymous10/29/2016

    So beautiful, never heard of Artome. Can't wait to see your show!-M3

  6. Hi Cassie and thanks so much for sharing such an awesome lesson with all of us. What type of paint did you add to the glue? Is it something that would still be good in a few months (to use maybe on another project)?

    Thanks again! I cannot wait to give this lesson a go : )

  7. This is amazing! I might be stealing this idea to do with my students!
    five nights at freddy’s

  8. nice bLog! its interesting. thank you for sharing....

  9. HI Cassie. I am new to teaching art. I am starting to do this abstract selfies project with my 3rd graders. I am in Illinois and struggling to figure out what standards would fit each project. Would you happen to know what standards this project would relate to? Thanks so much for all your sharing and posting. You have been a wonderful help to me.


Thank you so much for your comments. I appreciate each and every one :)

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.