Showing posts with label kindergarten art class. Show all posts
Showing posts with label kindergarten art class. Show all posts

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

In the Art Room: Kindergarten Snowmen!

Every time I post on this blog lately, I find myself apologizing for not posting more. I'm tired of apologizing and I miss it here...and y'all! One of my goals this year is to get back here at least twice a week (my goal is three) to share lessons and whatever else that's goin' on. So, to kick off the new year, I thought I'd share a project I wrapped with kindergarten that they totally loved...and I think your kids will too. 

I created this lesson video for you to share with your students! I'll break it down day by day as to how I taught it in my art room.
Day 1: We painted spirals. I have my kindergarten for 30 minute art classes. Most of them finished their spiral paintings on one day but some wanted to paint the following. We used watercolor paint which is what I demo with in the video. Also, those warm color paintings? Those are by the first grade...and I'll be sharing that lesson with you later this week. 
Teaching kids brush control and proper brush use is no easy task...but it can be fun. Here's a clip of me teaching my students how to correctly use their paint brushes and achieve delicate spiral lines. 
If I have learned one thing about teaching kids, it's that silly sticks! They'll remember things if they are super silly and fun. That's basically my teaching philosophy. 
 Day 2: On the second day, we gathered with a clean 12" X 18" piece of paper and met on the floor with our bingo daubers (we call them paint markers). Because our daubers are filled with permanent ink, we placed another sheet of paper under ours to protect the least that was the idea. We did have a couple of incidences but we managed to get the floor clean. I did try to have them do a draw along with me while at their seats: TOTAL BUST. The kiddos couldn't focus when they were all spread out and it was just not fun. So we did a Round 2 on the floor and it was great. 

Day 3: We added the chalk and the paint to our snowman.
Day 4: We cut them out and added them to our backgrounds! Most kids added stick hands and a few even added boots. 
 This little guy got carried away decorating the background of his before cutting it out and adding it to his painted paper. I love it so much! Especially that rainbow scarf! 
 Something I was considering for y'all:

* If you are short on time, skip the painted background. Have the kids create their snowman and then just paint the background of that paper when finished.

* If you don't have paint markers or bingo daubers, try using Sharpie markers or black paint! If you use Sharpie markers, work on a sheet of paper that is 9" X 12" as the lines are much smaller than the daubers.

* The kids could color in the scarf and hat, not paint. I did that with a couple of classes when I didn't have time to get out the paint and they look great!
Love to hear from y'all if you give this lesson a go. Your kids will love it!
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Thursday, January 29, 2015

In the Art Room: A Unit on Shape for Kindergarten, Part 1

Hey guys, if you've not entered the UncommonGoods Giveaway yet, scoot yourself over here and do it! The come back for this here post. Thanks!

Hi, y'all! I'm here today to share with you some of the latest kindergarten masterpieces that the wee-est of wee ones have been creating in the art room. Because these lil dudes had never been to art before coming to me, I like to start with the super duper basics. Like the elements of art! Which is why, at the start of the year, I introduce 'em to a big fat hairy unit on line. We create paper line sculptures, paint a variety of lines, create abstract line paintings. Y'all, we are all about lines. And since a line creates a shape, shape is our next unit o' study!
But, before I get to said unit, can we chat about painting with small children for a moment, puh-lease? Let's be honest: they don't come by this kind of loveliness without a whole lotta proper painting how-to's, am I right? Namely, how not to jack up the paint tray (which also translates to "how not to drive your art teacher to drink the paint water"). My kindergarten kids pretty much hit the ground painting. And I've found that with lots of practice and constant reminders of proper painting technique, they can do just about anything. 
So, what do I tell 'em? The same thing every time we paint, from kindergarten all the way on up to fourth grade. It sounds a lil like this:

"Remember! Your paint brush is like a ballerina. She always dances on her tippy-toes. So you only need to put paint on her toes. She never scoots around on her bottom. So we would never smash our brush into our painting. It will ruin your ballerina's toes! And she won't be able to paint you a beautiful masterpiece. "

So, that's Thing One. Thing Two is all about changing colors from one to the next. I don't know what your paint set up is but mine goes a lil sumpthin like this: paint colors distributed in empty egg cartons, two per table of four children (I'm currently a Versa Temp by Sax paint convert. I looove this paint!); tray of water for cleaning and sponges for wiping excess water, two per table of four. And then my lil reminder routine for cleaning goes like this:

"Before you get a new color, your ballerina needs to take a bath. Put your brush in the cup of water and you should hear that paint brush scrub the bottom. It should sound like it's brushing it's teeth! Don't tap your brush on the cup, it will splash on your neighbor's painting! Instead, gently wipe your brush on Dirty Ole Sponge Bob (what we call our filthy painty sponges). Now you're ready for your new color!"

I have found that by making the process of painting and cleaning the brush silly and fun, the kids will do it. Sometimes we'll tell our brushes, "oh! Time to take a bath!" or "Ballerina! Do not scoot on your bottom!" It's hilarious to hear the kids having a full blown convo with their paint brush. But, hey, whatever works, right? So long as the principal doesn't walk in and wanna know why the kids are chatting with animate objects and drag 'em to the guidance counselor. 

Now! On to shapes!
So when I introduce the kids to shapes, I go about it a coupla ways. First we take a gander at this book. I love Lois Ehlert's books, don't you? This book especially is great because the shapes are bold and beautiful and easy for the kids to see. We count them, name them and count their number of sides. Going through this book with the kids helps me gain an understanding of their knowledge of shapes. As does playing a short round of this game.

I usually play this game once when I have a bit of down time with the kids. Again, it helps me gauge their shape knowledge. By this time in the school year, my kindergarten friends have learned quite a bit about shapes. So I like to spice this game up a bit. Instead of just calling out "pink triangle" I might say, "a shape that has three sides that's pink".  But even this simple game doesn't have all the shapes that are in the kinder-curriculum.
Which is why I love this lil handout from My students are well beyond circles and squares and are now in deep with trapezoids and parallelograms. I used this handout to make flashcards that we run through at the start of our lessons based on shape. We even did a couple vocab games just to get those words stuck in our heads. Here's a lil clip of some of the vocab games we play.
So, what's our first shape-based creation? Well, it's a total rip off our first line-based masterpiece. But the tie-in is just perfect and it only takes one class. Our shape box!
 Now, you can go about creating this shape box a coupla ways. Either have the kids create the box from two strips of black paper (which is great because they'll learn how to make a square but also sucks because it will take them a million years to make said square). OR you can have a glorious parent volunteer bust 'em out in less than 15 minutes. Which is what I opted to do after a class of kinder-kids spent entirely too much time creating a box and not having enough time to create the rest of their shapes. 
 So, let's talk shape making. How'd they make 'em? Well first you start with a strip of paper which is a line. Then ask them..."how can this line become a circle?" Immediately, they'll respond that you need to glue one end to the other. Then show them that if you pinch it's a drop shape! Pinch it have a crescent! Three times, viola, a triangle. And four, well, perhaps a square or a rectangle, you decide.
Kids found ways to create hearts and even stars. That pretty much made my day. 
What to do after that? Paint shapes, of course! We had many a chat about painting different shapes. The kids were intent on learning to paint stars and hearts. So many demos were given. I also have the tables covered in paper. I always encourage the kids to "practice and paint on the table". This way, once they feel comfortable, they can then paint on their paper. 
By the end of the first day, their paintings looked a little like this. We talked about how to create "rainbow shapes" by outlining the shapes in different colors. 
And one last painting day. It was funny, when some of the kids were finished and put their paintings on the drying rack, they asked if they could work on their shape sculptures again. Ermkay (cue Twilight Zone music).
Now, lest you think we be el finito with this here unit o' shapes, we've got some more work ahead of us. I'm 'bout to introduce organic shapes to these dudes with one of my fave artists, Henri Matisse. Tis time these kids take to creating some scissor-shapes, don't you think? 

Til then!
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Friday, February 7, 2014

In the Art Room: Winter Collage Landscapes by Kindergarten

Alright, to those of you in the Midwest, this looks awfully familiar, amirite?! I have buddies in Indiana whose children have missed so many days due to snow that they'll be in school until the end of June. THE END OF JUNE, PEOPLE! Meanwhile, in Tennessee, we've not had one single snow day. Like not even a speck o' snow. So it's a good thing my friends in kindergarten-land created these masterpieces as it seems this is the only snow we're gonna get.
Now, lemme give you the run down on my schedule with kindergarten. I see them for 45 minutes at a time every 6 days. And on that day, I have three classes of 'em back-to-back-to-Ima-bout-to-lose-my-mind-back. This project took us three of those art classes. Here's what each of those days looked like in brief:

Day #1: We looked at Vincent van Gogh's The Starry Night. We chatted about the time of day he portrayed, what season it might be, how the elements of a landscape are background, middleground and foreground and the back story of the painting. In kinder-friendly terms. Then I asked them what his painting might look like if it were winter? From there, each kiddo was given a 9" X 12" piece of white paper and a paint brush. They were to paint any kind of line near the middle of their paper with turquoise for the background. This was then mixed with white to create a snowy tint. They continued to paint down their paper with a line for middle and foreground. Once those were on the drying rack, we met again on the floor to read a book about van Gogh.
Day #2: I showed up wearing my Starry Night Light Up dress! This got a lot of cheers (and even an applause when I turned the lights on) from my wee friends. This time, we shifted our focus from the elements of a landscape to the sky van Gogh portrayed. We discussed how he loved to use bold lines and shape in his work to convey movement. We talked about how we can create our skies anyway we like...but sometimes it's okay to be inspired by other artists. After all, van Gogh was inspired by Japanese prints! Students were instructed to pick a sky color from an assortment of blues, black and violets. From there, they cut their land from their white paper, glued it to their chosen background paper and created their sky with oil pastels. I encouraged the little artists to practice sketching their moon and stars on the back before tackling the front.

Day #3: On this final day, we covered so freakin' much. Because the students would be using shapes to construct their houses, I did a little pre-assessment at the door. As the students entered, I showed them a colored-in shape. They were to tell me the name of the shape and color. This proved to be a wake-up call to me. Some of them didn't know their simple shapes! Review to do!

Once we were seated on the floor, we did a vocabulary review with a technique I learned a long time ago from my amazing Aunt Kimmy. She's a teacher and when I was a kid, she taught us something called the Number Game (was that what it was called, Kimmy?). I changed it up a bit...and I call it The Clap and Slap. For this, we review vocabulary, read vocabulary and count the syllables in our vocabulary words. It goes like this:

Sitting criss-cross (applesauce, because, after all, this is kindergarten), gently tap your legs twice, clap your hands twice and alternate snapping your fingers. Those alternating snaps will be used to count the syllables in the vocabulary words. For example, we slapped, clapped and snapped out the syllables of: land(snap)-scape(snap), back(snap)-ground(snap), middle(snap)-ground(snap), fore(snap)-ground(snap). After each clap/slap/snap, the children were to hold up the number of syllables we just counted with their fingers. We did this with all our vocabulary: Vincent van Gogh, The Starry Night, collage, scissors, paper, glue, square, rectangle, triangle.
With the review behind us, I introduced the kids to bit of math with their house collages. On their tables were tin trays filled with leftover painted paper scraps (ooooh, pretty! Thanks for the idea, Painted Paper!) I had cut the papers into three different sized squares: 3" X 3", 2" X 2" and 1" X 1". I held up a square and we chatted about how many sides it had, how many angles, etc...and then I asked, how could I turn this into a house? The first response was that it needed a roof. I had them tell me all the ways I could create a roof and then I presented them with this: I want to make a triangle roof but I only want to cut my square one time. Who can I do that?
One genius always guesses: by cutting it from one corner to the other! And, viola! I have a square cut in half! And a roof for me and a friend.

We did the same routine when cutting out a rectangle for our door. Some kids decided to use the other half of the rectangle for a chimney. Then I touched for just a moment on little details like door knobs or window panes...or anything else they came up with. 

Once the details of house making were discussed, we talked a bit about the placement of our houses. What sizes will the ones in the foreground be? How would that compare to the houses in the middle and back ground? The kids quickly picked up on the idea of creating houses in varying sizes. I asked them to create at least three houses in any size they liked.
"All of my houses are teeny tiny because they are in the far away background!" Making houses THAT small takes skill, people! I love this mini-villlage in the distance!
A whole lotta foreground houses.
When I asked this artist why there was a tiny house in the foreground, she said, "That's not a tiny house, that's the DOG'S house!"  Silly me.
I love everything about this whimsical piece, especially that hill and the big starry sky.
AND NOW FOR ONE LAST ANNOYING ATTEMPT AT SHAMELESS SELF-PROMOTION: I'm so thrilled to be nominated for Art Ed Blog of the Year...and I'd be super honored to have your vote. But you don't have to JUST vote for me, you can vote for multiple art blogs. If you've not checked out the line-up, there are some incredible blogs on the list! If you'd consider a vote for mine, I'd be just so super happy. 


 Visit here to check out those blogs and cast your vote.
Thanks, kids! Chat with you soon!
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