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Friday, January 22, 2016

Line and Shape Design Ornaments

Merry Christmas to All, and to All a Good Art Lesson!

Fourth Grade Art Variety Negative Positive Space Design Christmas Ornaments
A lot of times I avoid doing holiday themed artwork with the kids, I feel like they do enough of that on their own and even a little in their classrooms.  But I really enjoy teaching this lesson and the kids really love it too, so this one usually makes the cut in my classroom.  

I start the lesson by asking my fourth graders what they think of when they think about Christmas.  I teach at a Catholic school, so I feel 100% comfortable asking this question to my kiddos.  After we've shared a pretty good list of associations, I show them a finished example of what we are going to make.  I ask them to tell me what they think we are going to do based on our introduction and the example they are seeing.  After a few (usually pretty accurate) guesses, I explain what our focus of the lesson is going to be.  Most of them have noticed the theme of patterns and designs and most of them have pointed out that there is a word within each ornament.  I address variety as well as positive and negative space with them because few students have noticed that none of my ornaments have outlines nor are they entirely colored in, yet we still can see the clear shape of each ornament.  

To keep it simple and since the focus for me on this project is line and shape designs as well as the use of negative space, I give them stencils to use that I have made myself from poster board.  Some of them are ornaments, some are in the shapes of trees, and some are crosses.  I also give them the option to free draw their own outlines.  I just encourage them to use "whisper lines" for their outline so that we can erase it at the end.  I ask the kids to choose one word (though I don't stop them if they use multiple) in each of their ornaments and to FILL the rest of their space with patterns and designs.  This lesson usually takes the kids 2 class periods (I have them for 55 minutes each class period), so for the first class period, I have them plan out their designs in pencil.  In the middle of the first class period or at the beginning of the 2nd class period, I share my "pattern and design cheat sheets" with them (these are just printed examples).  I still encourage them to make each pattern/design their own unique creation if they are using my cheat sheets for inspiration, but I still get a few copy cats.  They finish their designs off with skinny marks and erase their original outlines.  Some of the kids really struggle with the whole "no outline" and "not entirely colored in" concept, but I encourage them all to avoid these things.  If they want them to look like lights or ornaments, I show them how to free draw strings for them to hang from, otherwise they can be free floating shapes.  Okay, enough talking about the lesson, let's get to the good stuff!  More photos:
Fourth Grade Art Variety Negative Positive Space Design Christmas Ornaments

Fourth Grade Art Variety Negative Positive Space Design Christmas Ornaments

Fourth Grade Art Variety Negative Positive Space Design Christmas Ornaments

Fourth Grade Art Variety Negative Positive Space Design Christmas Ornaments

Fourth Grade Art Variety Negative Positive Space Design Christmas Ornaments

Fourth Grade Art Variety Negative Positive Space Design Christmas Ornaments

Fourth Grade Art Variety Negative Positive Space Design Christmas Ornaments

Fourth Grade Art Variety Negative Positive Space Design Christmas Ornaments

Fourth Grade Art Variety Negative Positive Space Design Christmas Ornaments

Fourth Grade Art Variety Negative Positive Space Design Christmas Ornaments

Fourth Grade Art Variety Negative Positive Space Design Christmas Ornaments

Fourth Grade Art Variety Negative Positive Space Design Christmas Ornaments

Fourth Grade Art Variety Pattern Design Negative Space Christmas Ornaments





Salvador Dali Portraits

The 'Stache is Back


I've blogged about my Salvador Dali's mustache lesson before (details here) but I have a few more photos to add to the amazingness that is this art project.  They make me smile so much!  As has been the theme this year, I didn't get many photos, but I still want to share what I did manage to snap.  So here we go:
Fourth Grade Salvador Dali's Mustache Art Lesson

Fourth Grade Salvador Dali's Mustache Art Lesson

Fourth Grade Salvador Dali's Mustache Art Lesson

Fourth Grade Salvador Dali's Mustache Art Lesson

Fourth Grade Salvador Dali's Mustache Art Lesson


Day of the Dead Calaveras

Day of the Dead Calaveras

Fourth Grade Day of the Dead Foil Calavera Skulls Art Lesson
It's no secret that I LOVE Day of the Dead and all of the amazing artwork and stylings that come with it!  So I'm always playing around with new lessons to give the kids a variety of materials while still honoring the traditions of Day of the Dead.  

This year, I did some foil calaveras with my fourth graders.  After talking with the kids about the traditions and history of DoD (this is mostly recap for the kiddos at this point) we started off with a sheet of paper and drew out our plans for a highly decorated calavera (aka skull).  After they showed me that they had come up with a plan for their calavera that used space well and honored the DoD styles, I gave them a sheet of tooling foil and a magazine.  They taped their drawing to the sheet of foil and placed it on a magazine (for some give).  We have wood tools for this, but I just had the 4th graders use their pencils to trace their design on their paper again, which pressed it into the foil as it rested on the magazine.  Once they had transfered the design onto the foil, they removed the paper and drew/pressed directly into the tooling foil for a more defined look.  I let them decide if they liked the raised side or recessed side and added some color using permanent markers.  I'm always a little worried about the fragility of the foil and its sharp edges with the kids, so this time around, I precut some large construction paper squares and had the kids create a border for their calavera.  After they were done with that, I hot glued their foil right onto the paper for them.  They all came out so unique and colorful, I was in love!!!!  I just wish I had taken more photos (I could have swore I took more, but these were all I could find on my iPad--maybe if I blogged more regularly, I would still have the artwork to rephotograph.  Whoops)!  And the photos I did take, don't do them justice.  They were very bright and festive!
Fourth Grade Day of the Dead Foil Calavera Skulls Art Lesson

Fourth Grade Day of the Dead Foil Calavera Skulls Art Lesson


Fourth Grade Day of the Dead Foil Calavera Skulls Art Lesson

Fourth Grade Day of the Dead Foil Metal Relief Calavera Art

Fourth Grade Day of the Dead Foil Metal Relief Calavera Art

Fourth Grade Day of the Dead Foil Metal Relief Calavera Art


Fourth Grade Day of the Dead Foil Metal Relief Calavera Art