Saturday, December 17, 2016

It's Cold Outside But the Kiln is Warm!

Hiawatha artists from K-3 have had their hands muddy these past few weeks. The ground may be frozen, but they have clay to play with!

2/3 grades responded to Snowmen at Night, a book about the mischief snowmen get into when we go to bed. These are some finished sculptures, having been "fired" in the kiln and painted to emphasize the snow people's personalities. 

Works in progress. The clay looks really gray before bring dry and fired. I loved admiring these snowmen villages as they dried. I wonder what they did when we went home for the night!

2nd Graders roll sphere forms and score, slip, and smooth practicing their best craftsmanship. 

Focus and creativity abounds in the snowman factory. This artist made his snowman playing an electric guitar.

K/1 Sculptors explored texture and pattern as they pressed stamps in slabs of red clay. 

Our UVM art education intern, Ellie Waggoner, taught this lesson . 

BEARS!! In an additional arts integrated class, Kindergarten students sculpted these super sweet bears to enhance their bear unit. They have been reading bear literature, learning about real bears, and will be visiting the VT Teddy Bear Factory. This partner teaching time gave the children a chance to dig deeper into clay sculpting techniques.This learning would not have been possible without the co-teaching time we had together. 

Friday, October 28, 2016

Puppets, Literacy and FUN!!

What better way to learn than to play? And what better way to play than to create!!?
Have you ever heard the classic tale Goldidog and the Three People? No? You might remember that tale as something different! Our grades 1 and 2 English Language Learner students explored literacy and sculpture as they re-told the classic story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears with plaster and mixed media puppets.

For the past month the group of four students have worked with Mrs. Johnson (ELL) and me while writing the story and creating some expressive puppets to help tell their story.
            The group performed for their class and practiced speaking their parts loudly and clearly.
They used plaster of Paris for their heads and mixed media for the bodies of their puppets. The art and Language Arts integration helped students communicate ideas from other disciplines, which is a CCSU Arts standard.

More Puppet Fun for    Grades K-1
I have a really clear memory of the awe and excitement I felt as a child when encouraged to rummage through junk bins of recycling and art supplies and encouraged to "go to town." I was at the Boston Science Museum and they had all these bins of computer keys, tubes and the likes. I don't remember what I made that day, but I do remember how free it felt to choose anything and make anything.
That open-ended exploration and engineering is exactly what excited and challenged the K-1 sculptors when making puppets. Each puppet was so different and presented its own set of engineering challenges like weight distribution and choice of adhesives.

Cone and cylinder makes a lovely lady
Focusing, testing and revising.
This puppet is held by a stick.
Del made her dog, Tony, which is held by his leash.
This is a "Principal Monster" puppet. 
Kindergarten artists have an impromptu monster show!
 The best part of this unit was seeing the children express their imagination in a clear 3-D way, and watching them persist when faced with a challenge to complete their goals.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Line and Value studies inspired by FALL!

Grades 2 and 3 showed what they think of and feel when imagining fall. Their focus was on types of lines and values of a color.

I brought in 2 pumpkins that I grew, complete with a squiggly brown vine attached. They also could study leaves, some zinnias, sunflowers, and photos of VT landscapes and birds. Artists were encouraged to show near and far with overlap and a variety of types of lines using a new drawing material...BLACK GLUE!!
Lavanya, Grade 2, shows curvy lines and lots of values in her art.
Elmer's glue mixed with black tempera paint makes an exciting and expressive material to use as outlines. When the glue dries, it makes a little barricade for watercolor paints to pool in.

Rachel in grade 3 Painted an expressive landscape.
They experimented with changing how much water was on their brush so they could make values of a color (light and dark).

Leah in grade 2 shows values of green in her tree.

Lauren in third grade overlaps and creates space in her fall art.

Their ideas are as unique as they are. 

Friday, September 30, 2016

Numbers and Letters Like Jasper Johns

Hiawatha artists are making connections between art and language arts (Kindergarten) and art and math (first grade). This is one of our CCSU Visual Arts Power Standards: Students make connections between art and history, culture, personal life and other disciplines.

First graders are each painting a number (inspired by artist Jasper Johns painting below) that the classes will use as a math learning tool in their classroom when practicing counting by 2's and 5's. They will paint the even numbers warm colors and odd numbers cool colors. 

"0-9" Painting by American Artist Jasper Johns 

 1st Grade Artists practice using two lines to make bubble numbers
Alphabet in art explored with Visual Thinking Strategies. I ask, "What's going on in this picture?" "What makes you say that?" What more can we find?"
Kindergarten artists practice uppercase and lowercase letters in their names while responsibly using oil pastels and watercolor paints. This project was inspired by work at Burlington's Integrated Arts Academy. 
Brand new paintbox!

Thursday, September 22, 2016

The Dot- A celebration of Creativity and Persistence

We celebrated National Dot Day alongside Ms. Lawrence, our librarian. FYI you can follow the goings on in our learning center on Instagram @hiawathalibrary.

Dot Day honors the book The Dot, By Peter Reynolds. The theme is great for the beginning of the year in art. It is about following your inspiration and seeing where it takes you.

K/1 grades explored on printmaking with circular objects, drawing and collage. (Kindergarten examples above)

2/3 grades worked at centers with choice of materials and they explored the variety of ways of making art with circles.
2nd Graders arrange circles at the collage center

                                    Artists in second grade layer colors at the paint center

The "centers" approach is great because it encourages independence and choice-making. I am learning more about Teaching Artistic Behavior, a way of teaching art with centers.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

New School Year, More Posts!

Beginning of the year self-portraits...created for a 
Pre-K through 3 whole school self portrait mural!

Happy New school year! 2016-2017 will be a great year in art. Hiawatha students have art once a week for 45 minutes. Some grade levels and classes will also experience additional art classes to learn their science, math, language arts concepts through integrated art units!
 Last year, I had great intentions of sharing and blogging more, but found myself so involved with co-planning our 1,500 person lantern event, that my extra minutes were absorbed. I hope you visit again, as my goal is to update it once a week. 
Each class used a different color and became part of our school rainbow. 
This was the visual instruction on the first class. Students were encouraged to also jot down something they want to learn in art this year. 

To begin the year, all Hiawatha students and staff were asked to draw themselves and be part of a large scale group mural. 

These are some of their practice drawings, drawn from memory and mirrors.
Each student glued their portrait down and could see, as our mural grew, that they are part of a great big community!

Monday, August 31, 2015

When the Students are Away...

The Art Teacher will Play... And Learn...and Teach!

In the summers I teach clay and craft camps at Burlington City Arts. This year I also had an awesome opportunity to fly to Washington DC to present some of the teaching work I have done at the national VSA conference. VSA (formerly Very Special Arts) is the national organization on arts and disability, started by JFK's Sister Jean Kennedy Smith. Did you know that the Vermont branch of VSA just moved to Essex?

I presented on a panel about arts partnerships in Vermont and inclusive teaching using Universal Design for Learning. I spoke about units I have taught and some professional goals I have for Hiawatha. The conference was a two-day experience and I also took many workshops on supporting students with disabilities in the art room. 

The Kennedy Center for the Performing arts
Well said!

I stayed an extra day to refresh and renew! Some of the coolest Smithsonian Museums were the African Art Museum, The National Portrait Gallery, and The Museum of American Art. The Buildings were amazing!

 National Museum of African Art  

                    Me and Georgia O'Keeffe- cant wait to show our 2nd graders who study her!

The Smithsonian Castle

This view does not get old.