Sunday, September 25, 2011

Andy Goldsworthy Inspired Color Wheels

The state of Missouri wants us to make a color wheel in 5th grade. But, Who wants a boring color wheel display where they look all the same? Not us!

First, we watched Rivers & Tides, a documentary that shows Andy making artwork. Students gave collective a "WOW!" with each piece of art he created. (That  gave me chills!) I encouraged conversation during the movie because some of the dialogue of the movie is kind of conceptual and over their heads. We discussed the "tools" artists use called media. We discussed shapes, forms, colors, and other elements of art while we watched. We also discussed permanence in art and why traditional artists strive for it and why Andy makes art that is so temporary.

Next we went outside. The kids loved collecting twigs in the crisp autumn air. I told them to only collect sticks that are "nature's trash". We never want to take living twigs off the tree.

The second class I set up stations where students worked together to paint as many sticks as possible. Students moved their bodies, not the paint, when they wanted to change colors; and only with my permission. We were a painting machine that day!

The final class we discussed Andy's favorite shape and form. My kids decided that his favorite shape is circle and his favorite form is an egg shape because of the repetition in his works. Then we talked about the order of colors in the color wheel and their proper order. Finally, I let them compose their wheels. Some got inspired by the glue-I think I would nip that in the bud next time, but sometimes when I see them being creative I just let them go with it.

What do you think? I think that the result is a less boring color wheel!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

First Week Reflections...

Wow! This last 2 weeks has been a whirlwind. I am finally settling into my crazy schedule between 3 schools. I have learned a few things at the elementary school. First, I need to have more patience. Second, I need to be flexible because the kids love that! And finally, if I assert my needs, administration rises to the occasion.

I found that in the first week the kids are all adjusting too. I went in to it immediately expecting them to respond, be focused, etc in art class. That was an unrealistic expectation on my part. They are adjusting to a new teacher, in some cases, new classmates, and a new schedule...for anyone that can cause you to be less focused. By the second meeting, the students were much more focused, and it seemed that they were remembering what the behavior expectations for school.

Fifth grade getting inspired by Arshlie Gorky's abstractions.

Kids were refreshed by my flexible approach to the art projects. I heard a little bit about their former teachers expecting them to be "perfect" and do it "her way". This hurts my heart! After all, the art room should be the one place in school where kids can make projects their way! I had to remind classes of this. "If I wanted a photograph of a person, I would give you a camera. Draw a person the best you can. I want a drawing." This relaxed them! "You want to make your cityscape with flying lollipops? Sounds great! In art, anything is possible!" I could see a sense of excitement come over them...and it spread like wildfire. The creativity was so awesome it made me want to cry with pride. I released something in my students. I am helplessly addicted to teaching art!

Finally, I am learning that when I tell my principals things that I need and want, they jump to accommodate me. This is a bit different from the high school, where administration has so many teachers and students to handle. At the school where I am teaching in the cafeteria, my principal is working on getting me a portable sink and has ordered me a dry erase board on wheels with storage! So, I am learning that she who asks may receive, so I will have to keep that up.

I think it is also important for me to stay organized. Writing things down is really helping. I switched from an electronic planner (my phone) to an old fashioned planner and it is working better for me.

Whew. Hopefully I will have more to share with you soon!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Day Before School Prayers, 8 p.m. Bedtime!

I sooooo have many other things that I should be doing right now, with school starting tomorrow, but it is therapeutic to put it out in the world. My classrooms are as ready as they are going to be for the time being. I am finding I am a perfectionist. I want everything to be like its been there lived in for years...the impending start of school has forced me to quit nesting and just put down the to-do list and be ok with just ok. The students will have comfortable spaces and lessons prepared for them. So, that is good enough. The posters didn't all get hung, the procedure signs didn't get made. But, I will still be a good art teacher!

Once I let it go, I actually feel great! But I am still going to bed early so I can be at school bright and early at 6 am. (sigh)

Pray for me! I pray my instincts kick in and I work out things last minute when they come up. I pray that I stay on time. I pray my kids show up on time. I pray that I don't forget anything. I pray I keep up with journaling so I can stay organized. I pray most of all that I can make kids better people through visual art. I pray they learn something about themselves. I pray that they are proud when their work is hung up. I pray that their parents get excited and buy frames for their artwork. And  most importantly I pray that God provides the guidance, patience, and inspiration that I need to make this a terrific year.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Art Room Organization Pics

The Teaching Palette

I found this fantastic blog called the Teaching Palette. I haven't fully explored it yet, but check out this photo show on Flickr that art teachers shared about organizing an art classroom. FANTASTIC!

Organize Your Room!

Happy Cleaning!

Intro to Design Students Alter Books

As a summative assessment for my Intro to Visual Design students, I allowed them to do an altered book. My librarian was pruning away books that were just going into a dumpster or into teachers' private collections. Rather than throw them away, I thought it would be a great lesson on recycling, re purposing, and creating assemblage multi-media type work. It was cathartic for some students who chose subject matter that they hated so they could symbolically cover the pages with things they liked better. Other students chose subjects they enjoyed so they could incorporate the subject and writings in the books into the compositions. Students were challenged with creating 8 spreads (two open pages). They did not have to do anything to the outside, but if they did, they were awarded extra credit, and almost all the students did. While we worked I allowed the following you tube playlist to loop on the projector. Students who were stumped and not sure how to continue, could check out a video for ideas.

I also have a few books that I shared with them (I'll post the names later as they are in my classroom and I am at home).
Here are their creations:

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Checkout this site for transition songs

I remembered this song my cooperating teacher used to sing when I student taught and I found a site with lots of other good examples!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

My Children Books Wish List Keeps Growing

I just had to share...

Just in case someone is feeling generous!

Math in the Art Room

I have always thought I wasn't very good at math. So, when it's time to do cross curricular with math, I instantly freak...until I found this website! There are tons of explanations and standards put in plain English so I can easily incorporate math concepts into my lessons. LOVE!!

Math for the left and right brain

Comprehensive, dynamic content

“Love it! My students and my own children can't wait to get on the computer, and I then have a hard time stopping them from using the site!
Special education teacher,
Elmhurst, Illinois, U.S.A.
Read more testimonials: parent | teacher

Grades Pre-K to 8

Art Songs

I have been looking for music about art for some time. I think I may have found it. It was recommended by Mini Matisse (a fantastic art teacher blog, I might add). Check out Songs in the Key of Art! Its on my wish list for right now until that full-time pay starts coming in.
Make payments with PayPal - it's fast, free and secure!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Deep Space Sparkle-This blog is AWESOME

I just had to share this blog quickly. I think it is absolutely awesome!

My Student Wins Congressional Art Competition!!

This past spring, I encouraged my high school Introduction to Visual Design students to enter the annual Congressional Art Competition. Here is the link for the House's website on the competition. Students may enter an original 2-D artwork to their local congress representative. Each rep chooses one artwork to be hung at the Capitol Building in Washington D.C.! I thought it would be a good experience for them to enter. They would learn a little about deadlines and working independently, which for my Freshmen and Sophomores, is a skill they will need later in high school and beyond. I had about 15 artworks submitted! Students got extra credit for simply entering a framed artwork. I was so excited that so many of my kids used their own time to participate.  
Madeline Marquart and Representative Blaine Luetkemeyer

In April, we got word that my student Madeline Marquart won the MO-9th District competition! Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer paid for plane tickets for Madeline and her mother, Dawn, to go to Washington D.C. for the show opening reception. The Academic Boosters at our high school was generous enough to help Madeline with some other expenses while she went on the trip. Madeline was also able to take in some of the sights in Washington D.C., visiting many museums, monuments, and even taking a tour of the White House!

Here is a link to her artwork on the House's Website. Her artwork will hang in the Capital for 1 year.

Madeline Marquart and her artwork "Firecrackers!"

This was a once in a lifetime experience for Madeline and will look exceptional on a college application. She was just 15 when she won! I have to say I feel like I won the award too because I am so proud of all my kids just for entering. 
Video of the Cannon Tunnel with Madeline's work and other winners across the US.

If you are interested in entering your kids' work, check out this link. Or feel free to ask your local representative's office for information. 

Monday, July 11, 2011

Totally Jealous of this classroom!

One of the schools I will be teaching at, I do not have a classroom. So, I will be teaching in the cafeteria. Bummer! So, this made me very jealous. I will continue to look for blog entries from teachers who do art on a cart for organizational tips. Wish me luck!

From Art is Messy Blog:
I like to give my kids access to most of my art materials. In order to do this, I organize the supplies into three cubby areas: collage and sculpture, drawing and paper and finally printmaking and paint. I find that it helps to organize the room this way because always know where to look for the materials that they need.
In addition to the different material sections, I keep other supplies like pencils, sharpies, erasers, crayons, markers and colored pencils in different areas throughout my room. I like to have my materials in different areas because I feel it helps those kids who have difficulty sitting still. It gives their movement justification.
I also create bulletin boards for each grade level I teach. I put examples of the artwork that we have studied so the kids can look at it during different points of the project. I also try to include art vocabulary on these boards as well.

Soon I will have more for you!

I am so sorry that I haven't been better ab out posting. I have much to share from the Spring semester and many ideas to explore for the fall! Stay tuned for more from Mrs. Meggles Art Room!