Showing posts with label art room routines. Show all posts
Showing posts with label art room routines. Show all posts

Sunday, December 27, 2015

In the Art Room: Art Teacherin' Resolutions for the New Year, Part 1

Kids. It's almost the New Year. And, if you're a list-loving-maker like me, that can only mean one thing: it's time to bust out that colorful variety pack of felt-tipped pens and start goal setting! I always make Sewing Goals, Health Goals, House-Cleaning/Decorating Goals and neglect Art Teacherin' Goals. Mostly because I seem to be stuck in the mindset that anything new to do with teaching must ONLY happen at the start of a school year.  Well, not this year, y'all. I'm banishing that notion and going full steam ahead with a litany of New -n- Improved Art Teacherin' Resolutions for the New Year! Who's with me?! 
One of my biggest goals as an art teacher is to jam pack as much info into the limited amount of time I have with my students. And for that reason, I'll be presenting Maximize Your Minutes in the Art Room at this winter's AOE conference! There's still time for you to register to attend this online conference and hear me chat about maximizing AND see a tour of my (new and improved for the new year) art room! 
So, without further ado, let's chat about my...
Art Teacherin' Resolutions for 2016, Part 1
("Part 1" because, let's face it, there's a whole lot I need to work on!)

My class schedule is not like most of y'all, I imagine. I see my kindergarteners for 45 minutes, weekly; my first and second for 30 minutes, bi-weekly and my third and fourth for an hour, weekly. Even with that limited amount of time, I don't want my students to have a watered-down art class. Instead I want to provide a super-concentrated, high fructose, protein-packed experience. One that is both fun and easy for me to build into a routine. So here are some new plans I am looking forward to putting into action once the kids return (by the way, several of these ideas came from the Queen of Pinterest, Donna Staten!):
An Art Class Greeting: When I open my art room door to greet the kids waiting outside, I usually have a coupla hand-raisers (what are we doing today?), a coupla complimenters (I like your hair! [really? because it's not changed since high school, y'all]) and a coupla lost-in-space-rs (Billy. The line is moving. Joining us?). For a while I snubbed this out with my Vocab-at-the-Door routine which I love but it just didn't pack the "Art class is the JAM! Let's get in here and make stuff" punch that I had in mind. Then I saw this video and got an idea to create an Art Class Greeting...
Isn't that awesome?! Of course, I plan to change it up a pinch by saying, "Hello, my most amazing artists!" but the rest is perfection. Then I can drop into my usual vocabulary routine...or, what I'm leaning more toward for a lil change-up, teaching the kids a Walking-into-the-Art-Room song. Check out how these students gather on the floor with a song in this incredible teacher's room (watch the whole video, her methods are fantastic!)...
An Art Class Song: Did you hear the little ditty the students sang as they came to the floor? I loved it! So I wrote one of my own. I wanna keep it short, sweet and simple so that the kids can quickly memorize it and put it to use as they walk in the door. Here's what I got so far: 
Walking into the art room
1-2-3
All my friends 
Are here with me
Let's learn about Picasso and
Vincent van Gogh
With the best kid artists
That I know
(and repeat till all are seated)

3. Word of the Week: Keeping What Works! Of course, I'm not throwing out everything in my attempt to maximize my minutes. I do still love the Word of the Week...
and plan to continue introducing new terminology this way. However, just one word of the week doesn't begin to cover all of the art vocabulary that needs to be taught. 
To remedy that situation, I plan to put my buddy Laura Lohman's Art Word Wall Cards to good use. I printed all of these words off and had them laminated at the start of the year...and just now got around to cutting them out and arranging them on my word wall cabinets.

I've got the words temporarily stuck onto my cabinets with sticky tack so that I can easily pluck them off and put them into my vocabulary pocket chart thingie.
You can score one of these bad boys from Amazon for a lil under $20. Or just shoot out a school-wide email and see if anyone has one they wouldn't mind parting with. When introducing new vocabulary with this chart, I like to do a couple of fun vocab games to get the kids comfortable with saying the words. 
These games are fun and quick. I use them when introducing new words, not each art class. We are trying to keep it short and quick so the kids can get to makerin', right? Oh, here's another:
Accelerated Art History for the Littles: I once went to the doc complaining of stress and panic attacks. She asked, "What do you do?" When I responded that I'm an art teacher, she nearly fell over laughing. "It's only art! How hard can it be?!" Well, I don't have to tell YOU, my art teacherin' friends, do I? Just how do we squeeze in art history, contemporary art, techniques, proper use of materials, skillz, not to mention creativity and the cultivation of some imagination in one class period? With some Accelerated Art History, I've decided. 
At the start of each art class, after our new lil greeting, entrance song and Word of the Week intro, I've started zooming this kids through art history in 120 seconds or less. My first attempts, I brought the kids over to my big art history wall and did the lil routine you see here. Which was super fun but ate into more art time than I desired. So now I show them my lil art history PowerPoint (to be shared here soon!) with a sneak peak into a new period in art each week. I've been using these books as my resource as they keep things short and sweet:

I found both used on Amazon and they have been great at highlighting the key points to share with my students. So far, we've covered cave art up through the Egyptians and the kids have loved these lil short snippets of art history. However, I recently discovered Marcia Beckett of Art is Basic's awesome TPT Art History Sketchbook prompts! Like, what?! So, now, when I am introducing this short voyage through art history, I can tie in the (older) kid's sketchbook prompts. I'm so thrilled with this idea, thank you, Marcia! (Below is a lil blurb about how I've had the kids create and use sketchbooks in my art room this year). 
Sitting Still Like a Frog: One of my goals this school year was to introduce mindfulness and breath to my students. I'll be the first to admit, I've totes dropped the ball on this one! I've been reading Sitting Still Like a Frog and I think I might have made the whole thing a lot more difficult than it needed to be. When my music teacher buddy Kiera told me that she uses the concept when she plays music and has the children listen silently while focusing on their breath, I was all, EUREKA! That's what I'll do! 
My thought is for my younger students who do not have sketchbooks to simply breathe and look at the art work I will have projected onto my television at the start of art class. You know, once, we've finished singing our entrance song and settled in on the floor. The plan is for that image presented to be from our lil Accelerated Art History lesson so I can segue right into that portion of art class. Of course, for the olders, it will give them a moment to reflect on their sketchbook prompt. 

How do you introduce the concept of breath and mindfulness in a fun way? I plan to show this video!

For more on mindfulness, check out this clippity clip!

A Flipped Classroom Attempt: I was really inspired at the AOE conference last winter by the concept of a flipped classroom. If you aren't familiar, the concept is that early finishers can educate themselves by viewing instructional videos created by the teacher. Nic Hahn of Mini Matisse has made a whole lotta strides with this in her art room and I love seeing what she's done (for example, this video above is one she shares with her students to introduce new stations in her art room!). Now, I don't have a class set of iPads for the kids to use but I do have the ability to record lessons and project them on my big screen television. I never really thought of doing this until Nic mentioned that it allowed her to, in one viewing, say everything she needed to say (cuz you know you ALWAYS forget something!) and, for some crazy reason, the kids focus much more on the telly than they do on us! It also will provide me a hot minute or two to tend to supplies and important tasks (like drinking my now-cold coffee). I'm really loving this idea and hope to start popping more videos up on my YouTube channel which you can find here
Alrightie. So, there you have it, just a sprinkling of my Art Teacherin' Resolutions for the New Year! I have many more new ideas in store for my young artists like a new twist on supply distribution, new messy mats that also double as educational tools and a squeaky clean clean-up routine! Stay tuned, y'all. Until then, you'll find me adding these fun and inspirational songs to my list o' tunes to play both for their lovely lyrics...
and their delish singers. HAAAAYYYYY, Bruno Marzzz. I see you! 

What are some of y'all's Art Teacherin' Resolutions for the New Year? I'd love to hear them! Let's inspire each other! photo signature_zpsd10b3273.png
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Sunday, February 9, 2014

What the Art Teacher Wore #89

2-Hour Delay Monday: I dunno about you, but I HATE me some school delays. I get it, the buses need time to warm up, the two specks of snow on the ground need to melt (remember, I live in Tennessee, snow is like our kryptonite here), whatevers. But I'm seriously more off-kilter and wacked-out on these days than normal. I needed a good POP! to get me going. sweater, skirt, tights: Target, they might still have the sweater on their sale rack, got mine for $12!; shoes: Dolls by Nina
So, if I might whine and carry on like a big baby for a minute (because I'm super good at it), this week has pretty much been One Fat Hairy Pain in the Patootie. Lemme give you the run down: we discovered a mystery leak in the kitchen that's causing our floor boards to buckle. So we've had two roofers and three plumbers out to investigate. Of course, the roofers say, "it's the plumbing!" and the plumbers say, "it's the roof!". There was more finger pointing going on than in a kindergarten class. So we threw bunches of money at 'em and our fingers are crossed that everything has been properly patched, caulked, installed and screwed. Insert your inappropriate comments here.

Just when we thought the drama was over, the downstairs heat decided to up and die. Yes, seriously. I've been wearing two pairs of fleece pajamas, three socks, a hat and fingerless gloves since Saturday. I'd snap an outfit photo for you but my camera is frozen. Sorry.

And just when my feel-sorry-for-myself-itis (side effects may include an annoying blog post and hairy legs) was in full swing, I get the news that my blog received...


Wait. WHAT?! 

Seriously, you guys. I was just so thrilled and honored to be nominated, I truly didn't expect to place within the top ten. I mean, did ya'll see who the nominees were? I read and gain so much from each of those art teachers! Please bookmark these blogs and spend some time perusing them. You won't regret it.

Also...I'd like to say thank you very much to those of you that nominated this blog and voted for it. It's meant so much to me, you guys! Especially after this leaky and heatless week!

Now, if you're new to this blog because The Art of Education brought you here, lemme tell you what happens here: weekly, I'll share a peak into my art room either with an art lesson or some other craziness; I'll post some creation of mine (hint: it's usually some tacky ensemble I've crafted); and I'll share what I've worn during the week which is what this post is all about. This week I decided to include my drawings from our One Drawing a Day book club adventure (go here and here to find out more and join the fun, kids!) and some fun-ness goin' down in the art room. If you are new, I'd love to hear from you! Feel free to shoot me an email or leave a message in the comments. Thanks, ya'll!
Drawing #1: A Still Life in Pen. Now, just cuz we are 7 days in to the book One Drawing a Day doesn't mean you can't join any ole time! In fact, don't tell the others, I'm behind by two days, whoops! Hoping to catch up this evening. But, really, the whole purpose of reading this book together is to get us all drawing and creating again. As art teachers, we have a bad habit of neglecting our own creativity. No more, I say!
Again, these tables. Suggestions on how to clean 'em really really well? They are whipped down daily by me and the kids...and still, this. And don't tell me Magic Eraser because I need a Super Magic Eraser to take care of this. In other news, look at that awesome Chinese calligraphy! Years ago I got a grant that paid for grinding stones, ink sticks and bamboo brushes. On this day, the kids were introduced to grinding the ink, properly holding the brush and writing in Chinese...all in our short 30 minutes of art. I love how this student really went to town.

School-Teachery Tuesday: I've been getting these lovely eye infections so I decided to give my balls a rest this week (that'd be EYEballs, ya perv). It's interesting all the (positive and negative) comments you receive from the little people when you suddenly appear in glasses. I also noticed that my wee friends in glasses were especially excited by the fact that I wear glasses too. sweater: Urban Outfitters, last year; dress: vintage; tights: dunno; shoes and pencil hair clip: DIY, go here

Last week, I shared with you the beginning stages of a 2nd grade painting project. This week we painted cherry blossoms on our practice sheet before painting them on our watercolor paper. The added bonus of having a practice sheet is that it's just as lovely as the finished product! P.S. don't you just love that little pinky up?!
Drawing #2: Organic Still Life in Calligraphy Pen. I keep noticing that when I'm drawing, I am either holding my breath or tensed up. I'm such a finicky artist that I'm hoping these exercises allow me to loosen up a bit.
"No Offense But You Don't Match, Mrs. Stephens" Wednesday: "I mean, you have orange on your legs and your shoes are two different colors," pointed out one well-meaning 4th grade boy. "She also never wears PANTS!" shouted one 4th grade girl from across the room. And my classroom management plan proceeded to fly out the window. sweater: Forever 21; dress and tights: Target; shoes and palette hair clip: made by me, shoe DIY here

I decided to try out something new in my art room this week that was suggest at the AOE Conference by Art Blog of the Year Finalist Art Teachers Hate Glitter. Instead of giving the kids "free draw" paper when they finish early (when, in my 30 minutes of art class, that usually means they have less than 5 minutes of free draw time), allow them to draw on dry erase boards. Holy cow, ya'll! This is genius! They absolutely love it and there's no wasted paper in my recycle bin. I found these dry erase boards at Walmart for about $2 each.
Day #3: Draw Someone with a Bamboo Pen. No bamboo pen on hand but I did have a feather quill. I much more comfortable drawing myself than hubs or the cat. I sit still much longer than they ever would.
My Favorite Colors Thursday: The inside of my dream airstream trailer will be covered in salmon pink and turquoise with a pop of coral and leopard print. dotted blouse: Old Navy; sweater and hair bows: Forever 21; dress: vintage; tights: Target; scarf: gift from a student

I started teaching an afternoon sewing class to 4th graders with a couple sewing buddies of mine. We have about 17 kids in the class and they are currently learning how to embroider and cross stitch. I'm excited to see them finish their name and sew on some buttons this week before we bust out the sewing machines and turn these into pillows!
Drawing #4: Use a Charcoal Stick to Draw a Still Life. No charcoal stick on hand but I did have a charcoal pencil. Not gonna lie, I loved working on this drawing of junk from my sewing room.
Drawing Day #5: Draw a Person Using a Variety of Values of Ink Washes. This was me on a Friday off from school so I could entertain the the roofers and plumbers that dropped by. As you can see from the drawing, I wasn't the happiest of hostesses.

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