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

Sunday, September 9, 2018

What the Art Teacher Wore #205

 Lemme just start by saying that I'm feeling so out of sorts lately with this here sharing space of mine. FOR YEARS I've been so good about posting three times a week and lately, like for the past couple of months, I'm lucky if I post here once! I feel badly about it, I have so much I want to share with y'all...but have not been doing my best at making the time. Just know that more posts and videos are in the works so be sure and hang with me...I'm just struggling right now at finding a balance. How 'bout you?
Here's where I'm struggling: TIME.MANAGEMENT. This has always been my biggest struggle as I'm a slacker, procrastinator, time waster and then, when I realize that the proverbial doo-doo has hit the fan, I'm a panic-er. Right now, my biggest struggle is adjusting to my new schedule this year. I start earlier (in the past, I always had a lovely morning plan time which would allow me to get ready for the day). This year, that's shortened and then, on some days, my classes are back to back...I know, we've all been there. But I'm used to having a pinch of time between my classes to prep and that's now more. By the end of my day, I'm left feeling like I have no idea WHAT just happened...and no energy to prep for the rest of the week. 

Also, as soon as I get home, Mitch and I go for about a four mile hike at the local lake. I LOVE this, we've been doing it for months...but it also means that my evening is shortened. By the time I get home, around 8:45, I feel like passing out.

But I don't...because I have a terrible habit of staying up too late. Doing not much of anything. Sometimes painting, sometimes creating...when I really should be sleeping. 

All that to say...I'm planning to get my life together (HAHAHAHA! Life Coach Wanted!) and get on a regular blogging schedule. At least that's the plan. 

Okay! On with my wacky week!
Thankfully, we had Monday off...but I kinda hate shortened weeks. They throw me off my teaching schedule, put some of my classes behind while others pull ahead. Don't get me wrong, I loved me a break but now I'm left with that "who am I? Where am I?" feeling. 

Like many of y'all, my younger kiddos are all about learning LINES right now. You can check out my line unit here
I'm also giving Dot Day a go with my first graders. They are painting on HUGE 14" cardboard pizza rounds that I bought in a 100 pack at Gordon Food Service (Amazon also sells them). We're adding color to BOTH sides of these as we'll be hanging them like a mobile. No...they won't be ready by the official Dot Day and that's okay. Here is a blog post filled with my favorite dot day ideas.
 I'm kicking off the school year with all things fibers! Because I'M INSANE. So my third graders painting landscapes on giant oval plates for their tree weaving project. These are a work in progress, still have details to add. 
 I believe I finally remembered to take an outfit photo on Wednesday. See? I can't even keep up with that! Top from Forever 21 (size up if you get one, like everything else in that store, it runs small), skirt from Modcloth, shoes are Converse and my jacket was latch hooked by me (see top photo for the back). 
 I couldn't wait until Friday to do a Feet Up Friday...I was wiped out only after 2 days!
 How do y'all distribute yarn? I always make Yarn Monsters for my kids. Basically, I take every color in my hand, start wrapping it around from my hand to my elbow until I've lost count of how many wraps. Then I cut it all with my scissors and tie a very tight knot in the middle. The kids then just pull one string out at a time...works great! Paint splatter dress made by me
When I sew with my younger students, like second grade, we stitch on burlap. I got SUPER lucky at the thrift store and scored a rainbow assortment of fabric. I did have to cut and glue the edges (to prevent fraying) but was stoked to get so many options!
 I see my second graders for 30 minutes at a time. On the first day, they picked their fabric which I'd glue popsicle sticks and yarn to for a tapestry. They chose their stitching fabric and learned how to thread and knot their needle. And that was the end of the first day. By the second day, nearly everyone had mastered a running stitch which they are creating around the border of their tapestry. They are SO EXCITED about this project. More to come, promise!
 My fourth graders are making pillows: emoji pillows, pizza pillows and...donuts! So I had to wear this dress for the occasion. 
 Not sure if I shared with you but I've always had a drum set...but I've not always had it out in my art room. This year, I decided to pull it out again as our Clean Up drums. Last week, each kid learned to play a fill...now, when it's clean up time I pick on kiddo and they go play it as our signal to clean up. The kids have been SUPER respectful of the drums. I'm so glad I busted them out again.
On Friday, we started adding color to our dots! We'll finish these this week and begin painting the back too. I can't wait!
I managed to stay a little late on Friday to prep everything for next week...one thing I wasn't able to tackle:
My desk! There's always next week, right?! I'm sure it will look exactly like this if not much worse. Oh well! Have a great week, y'all!

 photo signature_zpsd10b3273.png
Read more »

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

In the Art Room: Getting to Know You Paper Sculptures

Hey, friends! Today I'm sharing what my students, all of 'em, kindergarten through fourth grade, are working on to kick off the school year. I am calling them our Getting to Know You Sculptures!
If you follow me on Instagram, than you know I've been sharing a lot of info about this. I've gotten a TON of requests for the sheet...so I thought I'd share it with you.

You can access the Getting to Know You sheet here!

I wanted to create a lesson that the kids would love, would be easy for all to be successful at and help me out...I have to be absent for the next couple of days. So I knew I'd want something that would be easy and fun for my sub. I created a video for my sub (I always do...it just makes for much smoother sailing) and I thought I'd share it with you...just so you could see how I explain this lesson to my students. 
Note: I WILL NOT be using the sheet with my kindergarteners. Here is the lesson that I do with them...very similar but without the sheet of paper as their guide:
So far the kids have been LOVING this project and I am enjoying getting to know them! They've also been chatting to each other about why they picked what and it's so fun to hear them talk about it. I cannot wait to share with you how this lesson will progress...so stay tuned.

You might have noticed that I DO NOT use glue bottles. You can find out why here
Not gonna lie, storage is gonna be an issue until we get these hung up! I'm having some classes do theirs on a white background 12" square paper and others on black. For open house night, I plan to hang them in a checkerboard patter. The strips of paper are cut frmo copy paper.
In an attempt to stay organized, I'm keeping them clipped according to table colors. 

PLEASE NOTE...I love sharing lessons with you all and I do so for free. All I ask in return is that, if you use ANY of my lessons, please give credit where it's due. If you share on social media, please let folks know where you go the lesson from...this way they can benefit from the free resources as well. THANK YOU!

 photo signature_zpsd10b3273.png
Read more »

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!

 photo signature_zpsd10b3273.png
Read more »