Showing posts with label first days of art. Show all posts
Showing posts with label first days of art. Show all posts

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Leading a Professional Development for your Faculty and Staff

Well, it happened...school started. Not for the kiddos (they return this coming Wednesday) but for all teachers and staff. We kicked off the new school year on Wednesday. While most days were filled with meetings, note-taking and information-overloading, on Friday, the faculty and staff at my school painted! 
Recently I shared my painting of my "why I teach" mantra. You can check it out and the process of making it right here. Not long after sharing that, the vice principal at my school asked if I'd do a similar project with our faculty and staff. Like my online bookclub, the teachers in my building are also reading The Wild Card by Hope and Wade King. In that book, they talk about remembering your WHY...why do you teach? We decided to take it two steps further: not only come up with our why but to also put it in kid friendly terms and make a painting featuring our WHY. 
VIDEO WITH DEMO...of me leading the PD and some how-to clips!

We decided to have this professional development this past Friday. I knew many things going in: that the teachers were swamped and mostly likely stressed with everything they already have on their plates; that this might not allow them to entirely focus and enjoy the experience; that they might be anxious about painting and feeling stress over their perceived lack of artistic skills. With that in mind, I decided to loosen up the painting portion by making it into a little bit of a game. All of the works of art that you see were created by teachers who previously would have told you that they cannot paint or that they are not creative. Check these out...I beg to differ!
 Supplies:

8" x 10" matte board
6-8 colors of paint
brushes
Sharpies

Optional:

carbon paper
tissue paper with patterns
Modpodge
 The painting portion of our activity was done right before lunch. We spent about 40 minutes painting and adding bits of patterned tissue paper. I won't go into every detail as I cover it in the video. So you should, like, watch that. 
 There were 50 of us so it was a packed house. My room is very big so we were able to squeeze everyone in. There were 8 painters per table. I provided 8 cups of paint, served up in condiment cups with lids. 
 Oh! I almost forgot the most important supply! CHOCOLATE! I almost always provide chocolate when I run a PD...I always like to sweeten the deal. 
 
 The inspiration behind our painting game was Art Workshops for Children. I just got this book in the mail and I'M LIVING FOR IT! 
 I think the teachers were pleasantly surprised by their paintings even if they did freak when I told them to CHANGE SEATS!
 But what that did was free them up a bit...made them less anxious and got them having fun. When they returned to their board, they could make it their own. 
 Y'all, I'm SO doing this painting project with my students to kick off the new school year. More to come on that, I have some ideas that are still formulating but I'm SO EXCITED!
 Golly, I love me some thick brush strokes. These folks were not shy with the paint and I loved it!
 After lunch, teachers were to come prepared with their WHYs. They could have it in their minds, have it typed and printed out, whatever. I had prepared them ahead of time about this. The day before I had told them a little of what we'd be up to so they would know to come with a print out of their WHY.
 Having a lunch break in between our painting process and adding our WHY gave folks a little time to come up with it too if they'd forgotten. 
 In the video, you'll hear me share the three options for adding the WHY to the canvas. 
  The choices were free-hand, cut and paste from the printout or use carbon paper to transcribe the WHY. The first option was the least popular and the last was the most. 
Thats the reason everyone's font looks so amazing and even...the carbon paper left a ghost image that was traced over with Sharpie!
 From here, my admin would like to see them framed and hanging outside of each teacher's door. Of course, I love that idea because HOW BEAUTIFUL WILL THESE LOOK IN THE HALLS?! And I love the idea that the kids will know that their teachers value art and are artists too. 
 But, most importantly, their WHYs will be visible for all to see, read and comprehend. I know I love seeing mine...I think it will be a reminder for both me and my students. 
 Big shoutout to my coworkers for stepping out of their comfort zone and making a beautiful piece that says so much about them and their dedication to our students. 
 Our school song, the Johnson Song, starts off with "I'm so glad I go to Johnson School..." And THIS is why!
These are truly amazing educators who teach and touch so many little lives. 
 I wish I could share them all but then this would be my longest blog post ever...I'll try to share more in upcoming posts!
 If you decide to do something like this at your school, I would love a shout out! I love sharing lessons and ideas with y'all...but letting folks know where the idea came from so they can find it and benefit as well is ALWAYS appreciated. 
 BEE POSITIVE, Y'ALL!
 Thank you so much for letting me overshare. Feel free to drop me a line below if you have any questions!

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Tuesday, July 31, 2018

First Days of School ... The Art Room Edition!

Guess who has her very first day of school tomorrow?! 

That's right, this gal right here! Our tiny but amazing school district begins returns tomorrow and we always kick off the school year with a welcome back bash and a motivational speaker. From there we dive into our art PD...and we'll be learning from a weaving pro! I'm so excited...it's such a fun way to return to school.

My kiddos don't come to art for a couple of weeks so that gives me a minute to rehang LITERALLY EVERYTHING that fell off my walls and figure out what we're gonna be creating this year. In case you missed a room tour, I got you, boo. Check it here:
But that's not why I'm here today. While I try to wrap my brain around just what it is we'll be doing this year, I'm also reflecting on how we start our school year. Y'all know that means an intro to rules, routines and just how we "do" this art class thang. I've written many posts about my First Days of Art Class over the years. If you are interested...than this post is for you! Loads of links with videos for you to check out. 
If you need a lil cheat sheet for that very first day, I've got you COVERED, y'all! You can check out a video chat all about my WELCOME philosophy for the first day as well as more details right here.
 I don't know what your schedule looks like but mine is a lil crazy. Such is the life of a special's teacher. I'm not on a rotation schedule but one where I see the same classes on the same days of the week. Which is great because I always know what my Monday will look like...same as last Monday. It's not so great when we have a Monday off and then a snow day Monday and then a field trip Monday and the next thing you know...

A way to stay on top of all that is being organized. I'm organized-challenged but I like to play an organized art teacher on T.V. (or YouTube). Check out a blog post with video all about that here
I've shared a lot of videos about how I run my first day(s) of art right here and my YouTube channel (where I often upload first then share here...if you'd like to be "in the know", than you might wanna subscribe). And, honestly, it changes from year to year. I switch it up, change, "improve", decide something was NOT an improvement and change again. You can check out how I ran my first day of art back in 2015 right here. Please note how DRASTICALLY DIFFERENT my art room is now right here!
There are so many fun ways to introduce your students to your art room rules. One year, I created an Escape Game for my 2nd-4th grade students. They LOVED it! You can check out the video they viewed and the resources they used right here.
 Last year, I created a super fun video with my faculty! They pretended to be my students and shared the Do's and Don't's of art class. It was such a joy and happy memory to make this video with them. I plan to share the video again this year as all the rules still apply...and it cracks me up EVERY TIME! You can see the video and more details about my first days of art last year, here.
 Now...let's talk about that bird of a different feather: KINDERGARTEN. I totally go about my first days with kindergarten MUCH differently. I've created many videos of myself teaching kindergarten and sharing lessons for their first days. If you are interested, go here.
I'm pretty big on mess-making on the very first day. My philosophy is this: THE KIDS HAVE HEARD NOTHING BUT RULES ALL DAY! It's important for you to cover yours...but, let's be honest, by the time they reach you, they are checked out! You have many art classes to establish rules and routines. Dole it out over the first weeks and month...and make sure to make messes in between. I've shared MANY of my first day art lessons here...check it out!

Have a super return to the school year, friends! If you'd like to follow my adventures, do so here!  

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Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Art Teacherin' Book Club: A Giveaway!

Exciting News! I was recently contacted by a lovely publicist for Ulysses Press, the publishers of our current Art Teacherin' Book Club read The Growth Mindset Coach. The authors, Annie Brock and Heather Hundley have a follow up book that is due to be released very soon titled The Growth Mindset Playbook. And you can enter to win this book! 

Here's how:

* Leave a comment below! Tell me a little bit about why you are interested in learning more about growth mindsets. Lemme hear how you might want to use this in your art room. Share what you had for dinner last night...really, write what you like! I just want to hear your thoughts on growth mindsets.

If you are so inclined...but not required to enter:

* Share this blog post on your fave social media outlet. Just so your friends can learn about this opportunity (thus lessening your chances, I know...but you are being a good person and isn't that worth more? Don't answer that). 

I'll be back on Sunday to share the winner! 

Now...do you think you can handle even MORE exciting news?!
Mark your calendars because on Wednesday the 19th, on our third book club chat, co-author of the very book we are reading, Annie Brock, will be joining our chat. I KNOW! Big thanks to a fellow art teacher who put us in touch, Annie has graciously agreed to join the chat that evening. Come prepared to ask her a lot of questions that you've had while reading her book: how she started on this journey, what it looked like in her classroom, what she had for dinner last night, you get the idea. I'm super stoked that she's kindly offered to take time out to join our wild and crazy art teacherin' bunch!
I'm also stoked about our chat this week. We'll be pouring over the first month of school (whichever that may be for you) and how best to teach growth mindsets to our artists. What resources, books, videos, yoga poses, you name it, will best excite and educate our kiddos on changing their minds for the best. Come ready to chat at 8pm CST right here. Some folks have told me that they don't see the chat at times...I think the best thing to do is make sure you have a strong internet connection and be certain to like/follow my page. I should then pop up in your feed at 8pm...so you might wanna have your laptop on mute so as not to frighten the children.
Looking forward to reading your comments (I had pesto lasagna for dinner last night that I actually made, in case you were wondering) and book clubbin' with you soon. 
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Monday, October 10, 2016

In the Art Room: The Start of Art!


How you start your art class sets the tone for your art teacherin' day. Lemme chat with y'all about what I have found to be the most successful ways to start art off right. 

A Greeting: Okay. Y'all know that if you let them, your kids will walk into your art room saying the following: I like your hair; I like your shoes; I lost my tooth; My grandma is visiting; It's my birthday!; Yesterday was my birthday!; (and, my personal fave) WHAT ARE WE DOING TODAY?! 

I like to divert this practice of holding 20 individual conversations by starting the class with a greeting. 'Hello, my most amazing artists!' is my favorite. It works for me and it eliminates the chance of me getting sucked into long winded chats. 

A Minute to Prep: I like to give myself a minute to grab the supplies I'll need for a lesson. Sometimes that means I'll have a "teacher" sit in my chair and chat with the kids about art. Another way I like to do that is with a short video created either by me or found online. This gives all my students a chance to settle in quietly. 

Tape on the Floor: The tape on the floor is a gift sent from art teacherin' heaven. I don't have a carpet (I'm not a fan of 'em even though they are pretty) so the kids don't know where to sit. Tape helps guide them in quickly to take a seat. 

Happy/Sad Board: Y'all, I'm the worst about being consistent but my happy/sad board is something I can handle...and I'll often have the kids handle it! I talk about it in my very first Art Teacherin' 101:
These little things like a greeting, a minute to catch my breath by having a "substitute teacher" in my chair, tape on the floor and the Happy/Sad board make a big difference when it comes to starting my art class off right. What do y'all do at the start of art to set the tone? 

Oh! And I did mention the Smartest Artist, more details here
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Sunday, September 11, 2016

In the Art Room: Clean Up, the Movie!

 
Hey, guys, Box o' Crayons here! I'm so excited to share with y'all a little something I've been referring to as Clean Up, The Movie. It has been brought to my attention that my wee artists have kinda forgotten our clean up routine (cuz their art teacher foolishly assumed that they'd remember it as we were only out of school for two months and they are under the age of 10 [I know, I know. When will I learn]). Because I covered it quickly at the start of the year, I failed to really drive home the important parts of our routine. So I recruited my awesome buddies Kiera Crite, our music teacher, Ali Starkweather, our P.E. teacher and Bethany Kokoski, our P.E. teacher, to help a crazy art teacher out. 

Grab your popcorn, folks! And enjoy Clean Up, The Movie
I got the idea to create the movie earlier this week, wrote out the "script" (if that's what you wanna call it...been over-sharing all the deets here) Thursday night and we filmed on Friday after school. I strongly encouraged the ladies to do a little improv because they are so funny, I knew they would come up with some great stuff. And I know that the kids are going to LOVE seeing some of their favorite teachers ham it up in this video! Be sure to watch to the end where I threw in our outrageous outtakes.
Here's what I decided to cover in the art room:

* Clean Up Signal I once casually mentioned that I thought it would be cool to have a gong in my art room after seeing one at a music shop. My hubs works for a musical instrument company and, well, I magically received one for our 10 year wedding anniversary. The kids love the Clean Up Gong (tho it has been accidentally referred to as the Clean Up Bong and the Clean Up Dong...oh boy). Before I had the gong, I used this chime from my husbands company. I love using this inexpensive chime as an attention getter. 

* How to Clean Up Essentially, the kids need to know that they are to make the room as tidy as they found it (or better!). My older students totally get it, they are actually really great at straightening and tidying up. I have noticed that my younger kids don't even seem to see that they left scissors out or their chair not pushed in. I don't know if it's because they are young and mama picks up after them or what. But the words, "I am not your mama!" may have come outta my mouth a time or two.

* Standing like a Statue Their signal to me that they are ready to roll is that they are standing silently behind their pushed in chair at a tidy table. To encourage them to work together and clean up, the "best" table gets to line up first. Which is really bogus as they all have their certain spots in line. 

* Alphabetical Order Okay, you might think this one is crazy but it's the best thing ever. My students either leave my room and go to P.E. or vice versa as they have P.E. every day at my school. For our total Special Area sanity, we have the kids line up in designated spots so we don't have to deal with "But I'm the Line Leader!" "I'm the Door Holder!" "I'm the Caboose!" We ain't got time for that. Our fabulous P.E. teachers teach them how to line up in alphabetical order so when they come to me, they already know their spot!
* Painting Clean Up I must get asked a bazillion times, "where do I put my painting?" My response is usually "really?!" Or, even better, when they bring the painting to ME and I'm all, "do I look like a drying rack?" I totally forgot to put in the video where to put the paint brushes but the kids are really good at remembering where to put those (in a large plastic coffee can filled with warm soapy water by the sink). 
Weren't the actors hilarious?! We were DYING in between takes, y'all. I'm so lucky I work with folks who are willing to join me in my crazy ideas. BIG THANK YOU, Kiera, Ali and Bethany! I can't wait for our next movie making adventure. 
In case y'all are interested in how I created and edited the video (and did the voice over on the prezi), you might want to watch the above video. I'm SUPER low-tech...so if I can do it, you can!
While the making of the movie didn't take us long, the editing was a bit of a beast. Splicing all of those clips, trimming them down, creating the Prezi at the end and doing that voice over...it was a labor of love. I think I'll be able to use it for several classes and years. And I can always edit it some more in iMovie if needed. 
I'll keep you posted on the kids' reaction to Clean Up, The Movie!
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