Sunday, May 13, 2018

In the Art Room: Everyday Heroes!

Teacher Appreciation Week was last week and I FINALLY managed to get the fourth grader's portraits of our faculty and staff up just in time. If you recall, we created these some time ago...but I'd been saving them as a surprise for the teachers and staff on Monday of appreciation week. So I sneaked in on Sunday and got 'em all hung. They were a huge hit!

 Our theme for our art show is Superheroes...so I thought that calling this The Everyday Superheroes of Johnson Elementary would be fitting. If you recall, I did a similar project to this a couple of years ago and we called it the Gallery of Gratitude. For that, we simply created drawings. This time around, we used modeling clay. More information here
Here's the video I created for my students (and all y'all) to help them learn the process of creating a portrait with modeling clay:
I got a lot of questions about this project so I'll try to answer them here. 

*How did the kids pick the person they were to create a portrait of?
I had them silently draw the person's name after the video. If they knew the person, then they could go to their seat and get started. If they did not know the person (maybe they are a newer student or perhaps they simply have not had interaction with that person to know them well), then they could stay seated on the floor. After everyone drew a name, they could chat amongst the other kids on the floor and either swap names or do a redraw.
 * What about the people that didn't get their names drawn? Who did their portraits?

I had some kids who I learned were VERY fast at creating these mini portraits. And they loved creating them. So for those early finishers, I'd have them create a second or even a third portrait...or help those who were having trouble with their portraits.
 * What supplies did you use? Does modeling clay dry?

We used modeling clay from the craft stores...I found that some could be hard and some easy to manipulate. If they clay was hard, I simply told the kids to warm it up in their hands (see the video). I really found that all the modeling clay we used worked well. We used matte board cut to 3" squares as our base. Modeling clay NEVER sets so I added a varnish to the top to seal and protect it. For that, I used Crayola's Model Magic Glaze. The "frames" are actually plates from Hobby Lobby!
* How did you do the written portion? 

I didn't...the classroom teacher's handled that for me! I sent them an email letting them know what we were up to and asking if they could help me out. Not only did they talk to the kids about the written portion and have them write it up, they also had them type them! A parent volunteer then added them to the fancy paper frames. 
 * How long will this stay up?

I'd love to leave it up until the start of next school year...but I'm pretty sure I'm going to have to take it down before school's out for the summer. I'll be passing these back to the teachers and staff. 
 I think that about covers the questions I've been asked. My students loved making these so much that I followed their portraits up with a self portrait project of the same nature. They look so adorable for our art show!
 Were there tears on Monday morning? Y'all better believe it! This is one of the most favorite projects that I've done...it means so much to everyone involved!
 I loved reading the kind things our students had to say. Each and every person working in my school is so well loved!
 I'll definitely be doing this project again. I'd love to hear if you've done something similar!
Have a great week, superheroes! 
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2 comments:

  1. I LOVE these! I am not an art teacher but your projects make me want to switch fields! And your videos have me convinced my skill level is way higher than it is. ;) These portraits are wonderful and I’m going to have all my nieces and nephews and kids make them of our family this summer at ‘aunt Amanda art camp’. Thanks for sharing.

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  2. i like the artworks on your wall. its so cute and beautiful. thanks for sharing this
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