Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Painting Recycled Books

For this project,we used recycled hardbound books instead of canvas.  I started collecting discarded books from my library in the fall, and had enough for all students by March.
Because I wanted the students to have the choice of standing or hanging the finished books on a wall, we started by drilling 2 holes in the back cover and using wire for a hook.

Then a single hole needed to be drilled through the entire book to secure the cover and pages with string, so it wouldn't flop open while hanging on a wall.

Since the books had various covers, we first painted the covers white.  Note, the older red books bled into the white paint, so their primed background was pink.  The kids got very worried, but found out later that acrylic will cover colors underneath, and they painted over the pink the next day with their subject or design.
After painting the books, students chose 3 colors of embroidery thread and used a needle to put the thread through the holes, one color at a time.  Then threads were tied and the book was done.

(Side Note *HELP* - what kind of brushes do your students use with acrylic paints?  Ours are horrible, and I'd like to purchase new ones.  Any ideas on which ones I should get would be GREATLY appreciated.)

Monday, March 28, 2011

Mona Lisa Mural

My students' Mona Lisa mural (more info. about creating her here)is up and in the window of our super awesome local art store called The Artery, in Atascadero, CA.  I love the atmosphere and ambiance of locally owned shops like this one so much more than big-box-corporate stores with names that start with "M" and end with "s"......don't you?
This is the kind of project that would've been somewhat time consuming to do on my own.  Luckily, the owner of the store was my partner in mounting and hanging the mural.

Here's the method we chose for showing the piece, it was quite simple:
Step one: Glue each 9x12" colored paper to 11x14" black mat board.
Step two: Using hot glue guns, attach 11x14" mat boards together with 3x3" mat boards glued to thier corners.  (You can see part of the 3x3" colored mat boards in between the corners of the each section of the mural.)
Big thanks to The Artery & NCCS high school art students!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

3D Cubes

This was super fun lesson I found on the School Arts Magazine website, and the lesson is credited to: Explorations in Art, Davis Publications, Grade 2.  I used it with grades 4, 5, 6 and the kids enjoyed it a lot.

Each child needs 12 rectangles, 2"x4".  (Note, a 12"x18" piece of construction paper will yield exactly 27 of these rectangles.  So the cutting doesn't take as long as it seems.) 

We decided to decorate our rectangles with black marker before building the cubes, but they can be built plain too.  (So, if you decide to decorate, do that before folding:)

Step 1:  Fold each rectangle, lengthwise, into a 90 degree angle.
Step 2:  *Glue 4 rectangles to form the bottom, then glue 4 rectangles to form the lid.
Step 3:  Glue 4 pillars to inside corners of the bottom.
Step 4:  Add glue to inside of lid. 
Step 5:  Place lid on outside tops of pillars.

*Tip- tell students to hold pieces together with their fingers for the count of "5" each time they glue a piece to another piece.

  Thanks to San Benito Elementary students!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

In like a lion, out like a lamb.

Big thanks to Teach Kids Art for this lesson idea.  The kinders and 1st graders loved the magic of painting on top of white crayon resist and being able to see their darling lambs AFTER the paint is added.
Because I was doing this lesson with a public school, I decided to use a spring poem instead of the religious quote used originally.
Here's the poem I shared with the kids before our project.

In Like A Lion, Out Like A Lamb
by Lorie Hill
March roars in like a lion
So fierce,
The wind so cold,
It seems to pierce.

The month rolls on
And Spring draws near,
And March goes out
Like a lamb so dear.

 First we wrote our poem on the white paper with black crayon.  (I prepped the paper by drawing 4 faint pencil lines for the words, and we carefully wrote 2 words on each line.)
Second, we drew a curvy black "ground" lines, black legs, white fluffy-cloud bodies, black oval heads, and black tails.
Third, we outlined suns with black crayon, and added some grass.
Fourth, we painted the ground green, then the sky blue.

This student is blind, and his grandma is helping him with this project.

San Gabriel 1st graders!
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