Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Bottle Village

We have been talking so much about architecture in all the grades, I want to make sure I expose the students to all possible styles of architecture, not just what is familiar or popular. So we "visited" Grandma Prisbrey and her Bottle Village. I love to show the students artist who are untrained yet moved to create ( think Simon Rodia and the Watts Towers). The kids were transfixed by her creations. Many wanted to live in them and some want to create their own Bottle Village. Grandma Prisbrey was recycling before the term recycling was even used!

Westward Ho!

Today was pioneer day for the fourth graders. They went to music and danced pioneer dances. In PE they played pioneer games, hoop and stick anyone? They came to my room to make thaumatropes- I called them the 1800's PSP. The students, staff and parents all dressed up. The students enjoyed their new pioneer names: Mert, Hortence, Rufus, Cletus, Edwina, Zebulon and Preshea to name a few. I had to include this young pioneer, his fur cap and coat were so great!!!!

More third grade artwork

We have finally finish the artwork for the grant. It took a while but the students turned out great works in all the different mediums. Here is a "wood cut" a gouache painting and an acrylic painting.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Elevation, Section and Plan

The fourth grade artists started their blue prints. After perusing Dwell magazines for modern ideas they had to create a blue print showing the three views: elevation (what the structure looks like) section ( a cross-section of the structure) and the plan (floor plan). They also used blue print symbols for their plans. Check out these cool abodes...


The third grade looked at the work of the artists and illustrator SaraFanelli -
We studied her great maps from her book called My Map Book. It had all sorts of great maps. The third grade artist could choose anything to map. Here is a sampling:
A neighborhood map

A map of a
A map of bells

A map of a racetrack

...and a map of cake!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Guest Curator

We have started having students curate a show of their own. The students have to apply to have their show and the theme is What do you collect? Our first show went up in the case yesterday, the guest curator was Garrett in fourth grade. He brought in his collection of Marvel comics. Garrett took great care in setting up his show and deciding which pieces get to be shown. That is what a curator does, after all.
The students and staff have been enjoying his show. Keep checking back for more guest curators.

Friday, January 15, 2010

The Grant

The Media Specialist and I received a grant to teach the third grade students about Caldecott winning books. We showed the students the various media the artists used and let the students pick which appealed to them. The grant allowed us to order high quality materials for the students to work with. They used gouache, pastels, india ink, collage, conte crayon, printing, water colors and colored pencils. They created on canvases, media board and watercolor paper. The grant was mainly about introducing them to and experimenting with the materials used by the Caldecott award winners. The students could choose any subject matter for their work.



Water color (yes, it is George Washington)



More Grant Work

Here is more work from the third grade artists.






Art teachers meet and make

We had a district wide staff meeting where all the teachers got together with their teams. All the elementary art teachers met in my room. We created three-legged pots out of ceramic clay. The point was to incorporate math into our lesson plan and this lesson included finding the radius of a circle, division and measuring.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Good Design

While teaching the fourth grade about design I showed them how good design (from a simple idea) can make all the difference in the world. Tim Brown of IDEO say that to be an innovative designer you need to problem solve using 3 lenses: Empathy, intuition and inspiration. I showed the student a prime example of that thinking.

I asked the students how we could improve the water gathering system for these people. The students had so many great ideas (there are no bad ideas).
I then showed them a simple idea from Hippo Roller.

What a difference just an idea can makes!!! This was a strong illustration for the students to gain an understanding of the impact of a simple idea.

New Modernists

The fourth grade is starting a unit on design. They will be learning about modernist designers and architects. They will learn about how "everyone deserves good design". They will study Eames, Girard and the Wrights. They will study architecture from Le Corbusier, Mies Van Der Rohe and Gropius. We started the day off with a little perusing of Dwell magazine. The students compared the homes and products in the magazine to their homes. It was eye opening.