Thursday, March 22, 2012

Eric Carle Art 2012

We love Eric Carle at East Elementary!  

This year the first grade classes were getting ready for their program and as part of the preparation, each class decided to create Eric Carle art that was unique to the program and went along with the theme for each class. For the first part of this lesson we painted beautiful textured paper.  For the next lesson we created different pictures drawing and cutting different shapes from our beautiful patterned paper.  The kindergarten classes also celebrated spring by making Eric Carle butterflies.

 The Kindergarten classes all read "The Very Hungry Caterpillar" and then created pretty symmetrical butterflies using basic shapes.

The wings on this one are very creative!

Mrs. Percival's class created Roosters.  In reading about Eric Carle's history, we discovered that one of the first drawings he did was based on a little rooster and an ox that his teacher stamped on his paper.  From that moment on, roosters have been a recurrent theme throughout his work.  This was project was especially fun because the pictures turned out so cute and the children were able to make each one creatively.  We started with a basic egg shape for the body, then added the neck feathers, a head, curvy tail feathers.  The children drew the legs with a crayon.  All of these pictures are so cute!

 Mrs. Gerber's learned about radial symmetry and created spring flowers.

Miss Eberhard's class created frogs. The frogs were super cute and super easy!  Every child drew one large oval for the body. Then they drew 8 smaller ovals for the legs, little finger ovals, half circles for the eyes and cute shapes for the tongue. They cute out the shapes, arranged the frog any way they wanted and glued it all down. We added details with a sharpie.

Mrs. Brinkerhoff's class made bees to go along with their school program.  This was a little hard for the children to visualize, but they were still very cute. 

Mrs. Evan's class wanted to create "slugs" so we worked on this and ended up making a slug body and then added a little curved shell.  We found this drawing in one of Eric Carle's books.  It was cute and easy to do this simple two piece snail.  We added a spiral with colored chalk on the back of the shell to add a little bit of decoration.

Miss Zirker's class created beautiful spring kites.  This looks simple, but it ended up being one of the most complicated projects, mostly because I didn't manage it very well.

 To make the kite, we had each child cut triangles from a template, then cut each triangle in half and share half with a friend so they could end up with 4 different colors in their kite. The mirror image got us in trouble.  Next time, we will tell the children to make their kite and then have everyone share the RIGHT half pieces!  We had kids sharing the left side and then trading it for a right side and it didn't always work out. The children had trouble visualizing how the kite would go back together and it got complicated!   Miss Zirker and I were running around trying to help the children put all the pieces back together so it actually looked like a kite.  I will do better if we ever do it again!

Mrs. Rutledge was focusing on doing chores and cleaning house, so her class creating these darling little cottages!  This was fun project and the children were able to cute basic squares and triangles to create little houses.

Mrs. Peterson's class made cute little people with umbrella's standing in a rainstorm and Miss Bowcutt's class created a scene from "The Very Tiny Seed" showing someone stepping in the mud. See pictures of these two projects in our 1st grade spring art post.  I wasn't able to get a photo of these projects before we put them up in the hall.

After everyone finished their Eric Carle projects, the classroom teachers put them up on display for the first grade program!  The halls are looking beautiful and we will leave this display up for our  upcoming Art Show on April 11th!  Spring is finally coming to East Elementary!

Monday, March 12, 2012

2nd Grade Stripes -- Update

After a very successful planning meeting, the art for the 2nd grade program came together beautifully!  To create a focal mural reminiscent of Van Gogh's Starry Starry Night, the children from Mrs. Embleton's class painted curvy red stripes on butcher paper.  Mrs. Embleton carefully arranged the artwork to create these beautiful rolling hills.  

The walls around the central mural were covered floor to ceiling with almost 200 large patriotic art pieces created by the 2nd graders!  The results were quite stunning, very colorful and very patriotic!  

To create this artwork, each child painted an abstract blue field and then added red curvy stripes to fill the paper.  Then they added a few start sprinkled randomly throughout.

This was a very fun project because we don't often work in such large scale. The children got to use very large brushes and lots of paint.  It was fun for them and the results were beautiful!

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Sunny St. George and Cherry Blossoms

 Last week I spent most of the week in Sunny St. George at the Utah Art Education Conference.  I was asked to share one of my favorite kindergarten lessons with the other teachers.  In Japanese culture they say that if you study a cherry blossom closely enough you can find the answer to all of the questions of life.  Every year in May I like to do an entire unit on Japanese art and culture in the entire school.  I created this finger paint lesson for kindergarten students, but it is fun for any age... including adults!  As I started to teach the lesson, some of the teachers looked hesitant when I told them that this is a finger-paint activity!  We started by creating beautiful bumpy branches and then we added blended flowers with white and red paint, and a few little green accents.  We used baby wipes to clean up.  The mess is very minimal and it is fun to get your hands a little dirty.

The results are beautiful!  I often say that the kindergarten pictures are prettier than the adults, but these teachers had wonderful time and created some very lovely works of art!

The palette was simple... just brown, white, red and green tempera paint on a foam plate. I used Crayola creamy tempera paint.  I have used other brands in the past, but this is my favorite.

It took a bit of encouragement, but everyone jumped in and started painting.  It was interesting to see how every painter interpreted the project just a little differently.

This artist made heavier branches than most, creating a very bold look to her painting.

Here are a few pictures as they are drying.  It was fun to see different interpretations and it gave me a lot of ideas for my own art.  This art project would be great for any age and would be a good inspiration piece for writing poetry.  We will doing this project in our kindergarten classes about the first week of May. I try to do it when the cherry blossoms are in full bloom!  I also have silk blossoms to show them and we study the picture "Almond Blossoms" by Van Gogh as inspiration for the bumpy branches!

After enjoying the warm weather in St. George and painting cherry blossoms, it was difficult to come back to the frigid weather of the Uintah Basin!