Showing posts with label sub plans. Show all posts
Showing posts with label sub plans. Show all posts

Sunday, November 12, 2017

In the Art Room: Early Finishers, Part 1

Well, hello, strangers! I normally aim to post on this here blog about three times a week but, over the last two weeks, I've hardly shared here. It feels weird not chatting with y'all but I've been super duper distracted with creating a new and exciting space for my early finisher friends! If you follow me on Insta, then you've seen me (over)share what I'm working on. Usually, on this blog, I post projects when they are complete. But I really have so many projects in the works right now (that are all in various stages of completion/do-overs/rethinking-my-life-choices) that I thought I'd give you a peek behind the mess that is my thinking process. Creating and thinking are always messy, amirite? 
 My art room is large because, once upon a time, it was the school library. So I'm spoiled rotten and y'all better believe I know it's true. In fact, the art room is what sold me on changing schools...I literally stalked the previous art teacher for two years (she was set to retire at that time) to get my foot in the door. However, with a big space, comes more room to make big messes...which is what I'm (unfortunately) super good at. This year, after nearly 15 years in this space, I'm making LOTS of changes. I've shared them with you mostly in the form of switching up my wall decor but now I'm ready to tackle the big things on my to do...namely, what to do with my Early Finisher Friends. 

We've all got 'em. Sometimes they've got 5 minutes, sometimes they've got 10...for me, it's my doubled up classes (where I have about 35 kids for an hour) where my artists finish their work at different paces. In the past, the space above was where they could go to build with blocks or draw using my drawing books...but I just have always had this nagging feeling that I wasn't offering them enough. I really want to allow time for more individual creative choice. So I'm thinking that my early finishers area could be just the thing. 

My plan is to allow kids time to BUILD, DRAW, DESIGN and/or READ. So, in the photo above, you'll see the bins on the right...those contain a variety of building blocks. On the top of the shelf, you'll see mannequins that I spray painted (I saw an art teacher who did this and LOVED the idea!), dinosaurs, flowers in pots and forms. That will be my draw area. Also included in this area will be these drawing prompt sticks:
 I got this idea from my buddy Kaitlyn and had to add it to my drawing area. I'll be sure to share more about this soon...but if you hop over to Kaitlyn's IG, you'll see a ton of ideas for drawing prompts!
 My biggest issue with friends who finish early is their concept of time. They have none. If they see there are only 3 minutes left on the timer, they STILL gonna go get a brand new sheet of paper or dump out 456 blocks. Then I'm all, "ain't nobody got time for that!" So that the kids do know what's available for them during the time they have, I've been creating these using Canva:
Each of these will be added to the front of my bins or in a draw, read, design area. They will show how much time the kids will need for each activity, what it is, how many clips their table must have (this a new behavioral management plan I'm trying...more details in a future blog post), where they can do the activity and how many kids can work together. These are simply prototypes...still kicking these around in my head. 
 The reason I'm sharing all of this with you today is because I'd LOVE your advice. What do you do with your early finisher friends? Or, if you have a more choice-based art room, how does it look? How do you organize the space for your artists?
 Side note: you might have noticed a rainbow theme...inspired by my gift from Treetopia, a rainbow tree and wreath! I've been tasked with decorating it...but I'm gonna put the wee artists on the job. Stay tuned!
I love my specials team, by the way. Thank you, Ali, for helping me get this beauty up!
 Another view of my space. It's going to be a great area...I've just got a lot to do before I can call it complete. My goal is to have it open for my kids after Thanksgiving break. 

But, again, I'd LOVE to hear from y'all! Please share your fave activities for those early birds. 
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Monday, October 2, 2017

In the Art Room: Colorful Village, An Update!

It's gotten pretty spooky here on the blog...what can I say, I love me some Halloween. And, by the way, you ain't seen nuthin' yet as I have so many Halloweenie DIY's to share! I'm beyond excited...but, for now, I'll take a wee break to share this super fun, art-ucational and easy SUB PLAN that my kiddos have been working on. 
That's right, a couple of weeks ago, I was out of town for a few days and needed to leave my sub and my students some fun plans. I created the following video for her to share with the students:

I try my hardest to request the same subs when possible so that they know my students and they know the drill: show my video up to the portion that the kids will be creating that day and get them rolling. If I'm gone a number of days, then I have them continue with the video on the following art classes. 
 Often times, when I prepare sub plans, I'll have the sub do the same project with nearly all of my classes (in this case, my friends in kindergarten worked on something else). I do this for a couple of reasons: less prep for me as far as materials and supplies goes and less prep for the sub. My subs are usually not art teachers so I like to keep their life simple. A happy sub is an art teacher's BFF...and in this case, mine was so happy, she left me an email saying she cleaned my tables for me. THANK YOU, MS. SHORT! 
 When I returned to school the following week, I was created by these beauties! The kids worked on 9" X 12" paper. You can read about the supplies used here
 By the way, looking for sub plans? I've got a ton and I'm happy to share. You can find them here. Also here you'll see how I set up for a sub...when I have the time to do so.
And if you'd rather just listen to this ding-dong talk sub plannin', well, here you go! But now, let's get back to the sub plan at hand, shall we?
  My students have felt so much pride in their work since I taught them how to draw in the third dimension. They are now pros! I love their fun and funky villages. 
 Reason #3 I LOOOOOOVE having every grade level do the same project when I am away: because when I return, we just drop in to finishing it off! That means I don't have to scramble to see what it was we were previously doing  and I don't have to prep new plans for the upcoming week. I can simply return to school, drop in to the pre-planned lesson and relax knowing that the art educatin' still goes on...with little stress from me. 
 This also gives me time to see where we left off on previous projects and where the next couple of art classes will take us. It's like a moment to breathe. And who doesn't need that?
 While I'm breathing (usually into a paper bag), my students are wrapping up their drawing and coloring. Once complete, they use liquid watercolors to add patches of cool colors. A light sprinkle of table salt adds the fun effect you see. 
 I'm so excited to display these along with the other landscape projects we are currently elbows deep in. 
 By the way, I'm a huge fan of Sax brand liquid watercolors. Last year, I liked them so much, I also purchased their fluorescent watercolors. Meh. I'll explain my feelings on those in uno momento. 
But first let's ooh and ahh over this salt-sprinkly goodness, shall we?
 So the Sax brand fluorescent paints were just weird, I don't know how else to describe them. I most def would not recommend them. They were more like a weird watery-soapy tempera than they were a watercolor. The kids liked them. I was not a fan.
 I tested the waters with a few classes and then promptly switched back to the ole tried and true. 
 The paintings still looked fabo so no complaints here. I work with some seriously awesome artists, what can I say? 
 One of our words of the week was VARIETY...I requested variety of houses, sizes, patterns, colors, you name it. And they delivered. 
 It was pointed out to me by several of the kids which house was mine...needless to say, it was always the craziest. Aw, shucks. They get me...every.single.art.class. Poor kids! 
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Tuesday, September 19, 2017

In the Art Room: A Colorful Village!

What's the worst thing about taking time off from school? Say it with me: SUB PLANS. Well, I thought I'd share a couple of sub plannin' tips with y'all today along with my most recent sub plan video! Let's kick it off with that, shall we?
My super fabulous sub will be hanging out with my artists for a couple of days. Most of my classes are just 30 minutes long...so, for that reason, I've left my sub this video and some instructions: just have the kiddos create the houses and begin the coloring portion. I learned my lesson the hard way my very first year teaching: don't leave a sub anything complicated. Granted, my first year teaching, all I left out were markers (brand new ones, mind you) only to find them scattered about with their caps off when I returned. Needless to say, I'll be handling the painting side of this project when I return.

Speaking of, here's why I like having ALL of my grade levels work on the same project AND have them continue to create when I return. It means that, come Monday, I'm not running around, scratching my head wondering what we are working on. Instead, I can take it easy, set out one supply: watercolor, and know that it will be a calm way to return. Not only that, but we'll have a beautiful masterpiece to show for our efforts even if the art teacher had the day off. 

Before we continue chatting about this project, I thought I'd share some of my other fave sub plans that resulted in beautiful creations. Feel free to use these sub plans in your art room!
I have to say, whenever I can, I call upon the same subs. My subs LOVE these videos...at least that's what they tell me. It makes their life so much easier and the kids are actually creating! Not just watching a video (well, they ARE but you know what I mean) or doing busy work. The kids are engaged and that makes the subbie's job so much easier. Complete version of this sub plan can be found here. 
This sub plan was a fun one...I could tell the kids had a blast based on the monsters they created! Find the complete details of this sub plan right here. 
While prepping for the sub, I created an Art Teacherin' 101 all about planning for a sub. This is what I can accomplish in an ideal situation: when I know I'm going to be away and I have plenty of time to prepare. Not all of us have this luxury. But, when I do, this is what I do. 
Holy Moly, this has been one of THEE most popular lessons I've shared on my blog: The Wings Mural! I've seen so many versions of this lesson and I LOVE it! This all started out as a sub plan and grew much bigger than I ever imagined. I'm so thrilled so many of y'all have found it useful. Here's the link to the original blog post
My very first sub videos were created when I had to be gone for...jury duty. Boy, that was a good time. Let me tell you, nothing makes you happier for your chosen profession than...JURY.DUTY. Anyway! My sweet artists created these happy hearts while I was away jurying. 
Alrightie, now let's return to the sub lesson at hand, shall we?
 As I was sayin', with my sweet sub, my artists will be learning how to draw a 3-D house. I'm encouraging them, via video, to create a variety of houses embellished with patterns. As inspo, I'll be leaving my sub the book The Big Orange Splot to read to the kids if time allows.
If this book is not in your library, it totally should be. AND, if it is, can we PLEASE talk about what Mr. Plumbean is serving over at his house during those late night talks with the neighbors? I'm thinkin' it's pretty good stuff to inspire those wild houses created!
AND now let's talk oil pastels. THESE ARE MY FAVORITE ON THE PLANET! I keep referring to them as Galaxy in my IG feed because I'm completely ignorant. Sorry, my bad. They are GALLERY (I get points for staring with the same letter, don't I?!) and they are by Sargent. They are also sent from Art Teacherin' Heaven and I cannot recommend them enough. 
 When I return, the kiddos will add a splash of liquid water color paints and return to their usually scheduled program. I'll be happy they continued to learn and create in my absence and they'll be thrilled not to have watched a mindless vid and drawn all over a worksheet. Winner-winner, Chicken Dinner!
LOVE to hear your fave sub plans! AND, if you give this project a-go, I'd love to see the results. Be sure and tag me on Instagram, Facebook or where ever you get your social media on. 
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Sunday, August 13, 2017

In the Art Room: Best Back to School Projects, Part 2

Hey, friends! Tomorrow is my first day back to school where I'll have kiddos in the art room and I'm super excited. One thing I love about this time of the year is coming up with fun projects that kick the school year off right. Last week, I shared some of my favorite Dot Day projects which I occasionally use as a theme for my back to school art projects. Today I thought I'd share my favorite collaborative back to school art projects. There are a lot, so get ready! 
But before we get to that, I have some exciting news. Recently, on our Wednesday night Facebook LIVE chats (to join the fun, like/follow here), the one and only Barney Saltzberg joined us. We had an absolute blast chatting with him. You can still find our conversation archived here. He has a new book out, My Book of Beautiful Oops, and is GIVING ONE AWAY! Yay! To enter to win your FREE copy of My Book of Beautiful Oops simply do the following:

* Leave a comment below. Tell me what your plans are or what you are doing on these first days back to school. Inquiring minds wanna know!

* Leave your email address. This way I can let you know when you win, yay!

It's that easy, y'all. Big thanks to our buddy Barney for this wonderful book and fabulous giveaway. Now, let's talk Best Back to School Art Projects.
I love kicking off the school year with a good book. You Be You and Only One You by Linda Krantz are two fabulous books to bring to your art room. This is a project that can be done with all of your students...and will leave you with a beautiful work of art to showcase their efforts. More on this mural here
You can find out just how we created these fish here
Feel free to bring this how-to video to your art room!
I am in love with this wild, wacky and colorful mural that was created by my kindergarten through fourth grade kiddos. It's Okay to be Different is a favorite book of mine by Todd Parr. This mural has been up for a while now...and it still remains outside my art room door. I think it's a great message for all. You can find out about this mural here
Here's a short video to share the process!
You can read about our process of creating these funny faces right here
Monochromatic selfies are a super fun way to start the school year. I've done this a couple of different times and with a couple different themes. You can find out more about how these were created here
This video really helped my students during the creation of their selfies.
Last year, we used our selfies to create this large J.E.S. sign for our school. 
On year we even made our selfies into a world map! This one took some time to do...and wasn't easy but sure was pretty once it was complete. 
Our heart mural is now a couple of years old and still hangs proudly in our school office. I love it, it's really stood the test of time. And who doesn't love the message of LOVE? You can see more about the completion of this mural here
The details on how each heart was created and by what grade level can be found here
Speaking of love, this mural was created by all of my students...they actually made it one year while I was out on jury duty. It was so awesome to come back to some amazing art! Here's the complete blog post. 
Here's the video I created for my sub to share with my students.
And here's the second video in that series. 
Probably one of the more popular posts on this blog has been this wings mural project. It's a GREAT back to school project because it's low-mess and low-stress (until you get ready to assemble that is...and then it's HOLY COW, WHAT WAS I THINKING?!). But once it's up, you won't regret it! Deets here
Here's a video I created to share with my students...feel free to use in your art teacherin' world!
I hope y'all have gotten a couple ideas for your return to school...I'd love to know what you and your sweet kiddos are creating! Also, don't forget to enter to win Barney's new book. Just leave a comment about your first day and don't forget to include your email address. Have a great week!
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