Friday, January 21, 2011

Greedy Zebra Collage

 Resources to Consider 
Book: Greedy Zebra by Mwenye Hadithi, Adrienne Kennaway (this book is part of a series of African stories)
Images of zebras
Intended Grade Level(s): 1st-2nd
Estimated Class Period(s):  One and a half
Materials Required:  white 12X18 #80 paper --2 sheets,  9X 16 green rectangle, black rectangles for tearing the stripes of the zebra, green tissue paper,  black crayons, scissors, glue, black paint and small brushes, green tissue paper, black yarn
Goals and Objectives: The goals of this lesson are technique and procedure based. 
GLEs Accomplished In Lesson: 
2nd  Grade PP 1.B Paint lines with control of the brush, 3.G Create an artwork that communicates ideas about themes: nature 
EP 1.A Identify and use wavy lines
1.F Identify and use light and dark values

Procedure (Guided Lesson, Instructions, etc): 
 Read the book, show images of zebras (I made a poster covered in cool zebra pictures), read the book Greedy Zebra, demonstrate project in steps. 
Project (Steps, Examples, etc):
1.    I explain that students can make a fat zebra that is busting out of his black coat, or they can make a zebra that looks more like the zebra on the cover of the book. I show them a ‘fat’ one with all the threads busting out on the last page of the book and one that I drew. I actually only demonstrate the first one on the board.
2.    I show the zebra drawing step-by-step. Step one, with a black crayon, draw an oval for the body. Step two, draw the neck, head, 4 legs, ears and a tail. I show them that some things need to be colored in solid black (like the ears and the circle for the eye nose,, tip of the tail and maybe the hooves).
3.    For the zebra’s stripes, students are to tear a black rectangle into strips. This is hard for some kids, but it is really good for building fine motor skills. They are supposed to tear skinny strips and glue them on the belly, some should start at the top and some at the bottom so they can meet in the middle. Students should also make strips for the neck and legs. If they have trouble, they can go back and add more stripes with a black crayon.
4.    I had a painting station set up for students to paint the frames. They were to write their name on the back of a white piece of paper and when I call them to the paint station, they are to paint black stripes on white paper—edges only. This would’ve looked cool w/white paint on black paper, but I have a much larger stock pile of white paper so it made sense to just use black paint. They did this at the same time that everyone else was tearing the strips for the zebra's body.
5.    Put everything in the drying wrack and look at books about Africa when finished. (I may have had them start an African mask sketch if they had free time….I had a handout of various African masks available, they were to study it and start planning an African mask on a small sheet of paper.)

Day 2

1.    I explained that we would be finishing our Greedy Zebras today. I demonstrated how to cut out the zebra, glue it to the green paper and then add green tissue paper for grass and bushes. I showed them how to roll the tissue paper into a ball or a tube and then glue it down. I also had a little bit of black yarn cut into small pieces for students to add for fur on the end of the tail and the back of the zebra’s neck.
2.    The last step was to glue the green paper to the frame. When students finished, they put these in the drying wrack. The second half of this lesson only took about ½ of one hour art time. I also had students add more black lines if their zebras needed more stripes.
3.    When finished, we started cutting out a symetrical African mask based on the design from the previous week. (not pictured)

Easy Elephant painting for Kinders

Resources to consider:
I showed them images of elephants. I also read the book Elmer by David McKee
Intended Grade Level(s): K-1
Estimated Class Period(s): 1 or 2
Materials Required: 12X12 white paper at least #80 weight, rulers, pencils, examples finished elephants to reference
Goals and Objectives: The goals of this lesson are to use a variety of colors and tempera paint with control, use shapes and lines in a composition.
Kindergarten PP 1.A Produce a line using crayon, pencil, or marker EP 1.A Identify and use lines 1.B Identify and use shapes I.E Identify and use color
1st Grade PP 1.B Apply paint with a dragging, not pushing motion EP 1.A Identify and use straight, curved, thick and thin lines 1.B Identify and use triangle, circle, square, rectangle and oval shapes 2.A Identify and demonstrate the concept of middle or center AP 2.A Identify the following in artworks: lines, shapes, colors, patterns

Project (Steps, Examples, etc):

1. This is a very simple, successful and straightforward project for little ones.
2. All of my kindergarten students seemed to be familiar with Elmer. I read the book Elmer (there are many in the series to choose from).
3. Demonstrate how to draw an elephant. Start with the trunk. Make a candy cane line and a backwards candy cane line in the middle of the paper. Then extend both lines beside each other, parallel. Close with a a sideways 'm'. Draw a circle around the top of the trunk for the face. Draw a big 'c' on each side for the ears.
4. Add eyes, tusks and lines on the trunk for texture. I showed them to draw the eyes below the 'candy cane curve.'
5. Some students chose to add eye lashes, bows, peanuts or a crown on top of their elephant.
6. Demonstrate how to trace over lines with a sharpie marker, make a black circle in the middle of the eye, color the white of the eye and the white part of the tusks with a white crayon (pressing down hard).
NOTE: If students made their elephants too small, (especially kinders) tell them that the small one could be the baby elephant and to just make another 'mom' elephant on the white area of their paper...that usually helps them and keeps them from getting also means you don't waste paper by giving them lots of chances.
7. Painting could be done during another class time....I actually had my students draw their elephants at the end of another project so after I read Elmer all we had to do was trace in sharpie and paint. I had an Elmer tracer ready for free time...if students finished early, they could make a little Elmer using crayons to take home.
8. We painted with tempera cake paints. I encouraged them to use yellow first, paint their elephant using any colors they wanted, but save black for last. I also demonstrated that they could paint their elephants with gray, I showed them how to mix black and white and gave them a choice. I encouraged them to paint the background black...but most just went with whatever they were feeling at that moment, they didn't plan it out too much.

 It is always interesting to see the variety of results that I get with a project like this.
I always model and demonstrate my own elephant at the front of the room. 
I show examples of what students in other classes have done and point out thing that are 'good' and 'bad' about each one. No matter how clearly I explain, someone always makes a mess of their paper. 

I have 11 classes of kindergarten. Most students were successful with this project. Their little drawings were precious....and they were able to keep control of the paint...few ruined their project once they added paint. Oh yeah, we did this before Christmas--I am really happy with the results!

Camera Still Life

 Resources to Consider
Camera images, I created a folder on my desktop full of images and I created a sideshow that I showed on my Smart Board. 
Visuals of cameras, still life images and examples of contour line drawings
Artist, Georgia O'keeffe (Any artist that draws or paints ordinary objects would be great, we just happened to be studying her work right before so it was a good way to tie together two units.)

Intended Grade Level(s): 3rd-6th
Estimated Class Period(s):4-6
Materials Required: Old/vintage cameras, one for each table or more, pencils, sharpies, white drawing paper, paint, brushes, water
Goals and Objectives: The goals of this lesson are technique and procedure based.
GLEs Accomplished In Lesson:  3rd Grade PP 1. B Paint lines and fill in shapes with even color using tempera (this is the main GLE I focused on for week 2-3).
Procedure (Guided Lesson, Instructions, etc):
Have a classroom discussion about still life. Demonstrate how to do a contour line drawing.
Project (Steps, Examples, etc):
1.    Explain that today we will focus on some basic drawing skills. The best way to become better at drawing is to practice. Today we will do some basic drawing exercises.
2.    Show examples of contour line drawing and also figure drawing using ovals and circles. Explain what a blind contour means.
3.    Explain that for the first few minutes, we will just get warmed up. Each drawing that we will do today will be timed. You will have 30 seconds, 1 minute or sometimes a bit longer to draw the subject matter.
4.    Have students draw a variety of cameras on pieces of paper, they can keep using the same piece, flip it over or they can get a new piece. Have them start drawing in pencil but try to discourage them from erasing, it takes way too long. Have them keep drawing for the entire time, they could add value or detail or pattern to their sketch. I explained that students should focus on one part of the camera, draw a box and completely fill it with one tiny bit of the camera, utilizing the corners, making it much larger in order to show variety and created an interesting composition, similar to the way O'keeffe would paint close ups of flowers, instead of just painting a flower in a vase.
5.    Students should draw for at least 30 minutes doing these basic drawing exercises.
6.    Discussion: Have students select their 3 best drawings. What do they like about the drawing?  Have them critique each others drawings.

Week 2. Students had to go back to their basic drawing sketches from week 1 and select a sketch to draw big on a piece of paper.

After they drew the camera, students outlined and added contrast in sharpie marker

They also had to 'draw' with yellow paint on a 12X18 piece of paper. This is a practice 'drawing/painting' for their larger camera still life painting next week. (I don't have images of this step)

All drawn by 4th grade.

Week 3: Students looked back at their 'practice painting' from week 1. Since they had practiced 'drawing' the outline in paint, it was much easier for them to get the shape of the camera right on the big paper.
The paintings below are all over 22" X 28"....I am not sure of the exact measurements.

We had to spread out on the floor to have room for this part. Students painted a large yellow outline on this HUGE paper. After painting the basic outline in yellow, students used florescent tempera paint to fill in the shapes. I had 1 brush in each color so that we didn't have to worry about spilling water buckets. I had 6 sets of colors sitting around the room on the floor for students to use.

Week 4: After the paint dried, I had some students go back with a black sharpie to add some outlines. These paintings looked very beautiful in the hall.

The week after finishing the project I hung up all the art in the hallways. It was right before spring break. I will never forget it, I came down with a really bad case of strep throat two days before our week off. It was miserable. When I came in to school a week and a half later, I found that the windows had been bricked-over during spring break in order to add some new classrooms to our school. Instead of a well-lit hallway, it was very dark and depressing and they didn't paint over the exposed gray bricks for almost 6 months, well after I had taken down the camera paintings.