Wednesday, February 13, 2019

In the Art Room: Kindergarten Hearts!

Not long ago, I was at Dollar Tree and found these foam heart shapes. I got an idea to use them in conjunction with the book, The Shape of my Heart with my kindergarten friends. I've ALWAYS wanted to do a project inspired by this book but I just couldn't think of a way to make it work...then, I got the idea to use foam shapes and pull prints. We've been doing it all week and we are loving it. I made a process video for you and your kiddos!
I see my kindergarten for 30 minutes, twice a week. On the first day, we used foam shape stickers purchased at Michaels to fill our hearts. We read the book and chatted about the difference between organic and geometric shapes. 
The following day we were ready to print! A friend on Instagram suggested that I use foam rollers and tempera paint for the printing portion...here is a peek at our table set up:
And here's a look-see at our prints!
Don't you love them!? Each kiddo pulled two prints. Next week, we'll begin cutting them out and adding them to our dotted backgrounds. Details about that in the video.

Now, what to do with our heart printing plates? Well...check out that first image and be sure to watch the video! I'm so excited, we'll be making metal reliefs with them. I did not explain the process of how we will frame those metal hearts in the video as I'm still working that through. I'll keep you posted tho. Have fun with this lesson...I know we have been!
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Sunday, February 3, 2019

DIY: Clipboard Gallery

Do you ever have one of those projects come to you because of a series of events? That's how my Clipboard Gallery idea came to be. 

But, before I get in to it, let's talk clipboards in the art room. Do you use them? We do ALL THE TIME! In fact, the original set I were purchased my first year teaching. Here's how I use clipboards in my art room: when we are guided drawing together on the floor and need a drawing surface; when tables are pretty messy with paint, glue or chalk and the kids need a "clean" surface for drawing; when my early finishers want to lounge out and draw in my early finisher areas, they grab a clipboard. Do y'all use them in your art rooms?

While I love clipboards, my system for organizing them was anything but desirable. I had a huge plastic bin that the kids just tossed them into with a loud clatter. It was ugly, took up floorspace and always overflowing with clipboards. Then an art teacher buddy suggested I check out a clipboard holder...and my life was changed forever. BEHOLD! My amazing clipboard holder!
 (Cue the angels singing) RIGHT?! Here's the link. The also come in half sizes which can be MOUNTED TO THE WALL! Say what?! But I needed a full set so I went with this one. It holds 24. Some of my classes are larger than that so I do have a small bin under this table that holds my spare ones.

Now I had a new problem. My old clipboards were 1. ugly and 2. all sorts of different sizes. So I ordered these in a variety of colors. Rainbow, of course. Have you met me?! 

With my new and sparkly set of clipboards, I was left wondering what to do with my old ones. I was halfway out the door to dump them in the teacher's lounge on the freebie table when I walked past this hot mess:
 What you see here is my Masterpiece Gallery. It's my little place in the "foyer" of my art room (I have a big ole room and yeah, I got a foyer) where I like to showcase the artwork the kids create at home. The problem? It's become more like a Mess-terpiece Gallery with pictures hanging crooked, falling down, overlapping. It's a disaster! AND my inbox is overflowing with more sweet drawings!
 Side note: with 30 minute classes, a lot of my class time was getting eaten away by kids giving me drawings and us chatting about them. While I do love doing that, I just don't have the time. So I got a mailbox this year an the kids put their drawings inside and put the little flag up. They loving doing that and letting me know that there is a surprise inside! BUT, as you can see, it's overflowing too!

As I was walking by this mess, I had an a-ha moment. I'd use my old junky clipboards to create another area, outside of my room (as I have no more wall space) to showcase artwork created at home. And the idea of the Clipboard Gallery was born. 

But first, I had to spray paint these guys white as they were a mess!
Despite the cold, we had some sunny days this week so it was perfect. Once dry, I spray painted them rainbow-y.
Look how well they match my room!
Hanging them was super easy because I always use these 3M Command Velcro strip things. Went up in a snap!
The giant clipboard was one I scored at the thrift store a while back for a couple bucks. They do sell them online...the cheapest I found was $30! So I got a steal. I did purchase more clipboards this weekend at the Dollar Tree so I can add more clipboards...I have a feeling this is going to be a very popular spot to share my students creations from home. How do you all display kids work from home? Love to know!

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