Family Art Night

Last school year I held my first family art night. 
Because we are a Title 1 school we have to hold several parent involvement nights. I was approached by our title 1 staff and was excited to give it a try. Art Night was held on the same night as parent teacher conferences. If you want more people, host these events on a night when most parents will be sure to attend. Another good example would be book fair night. Here are some of my Pinspirations:

January Show
The Set up
I used table cloths from book fair and covered all the cafeteria tables I needed. 
 5 stations with 2 tables for each. I also had many specialist, sped teachers, and assistants help out. I couldn't have done it without them.
 Marble painting
 Pinch pots with model magic
 Printing for stamps
 All materials were purchased with Title funds and not my art funds. This was to make sure we could have more art nights in the future and other teachers could also use the materials for projects in their classes. I used Patty's idea from Deep Space Sparkle to create boards with directions. I used science boards and painters tape to display the directions. The painters tape allows me to easily peal off the directions for future ones. Parent volunteers helped me put these together. 
I never got a chance to take my own photos. These are scanned from our year book.
It was a huge success. Not even the impending ice storm could keep families away!

 Doing what I do best, talking. 
 Marble painting was the most fun station!

Signs were on tables reminding everyone to write their name and child's teacher on the back. They were told to take them home tonight if the papers were dry. I returned all others the next day. 
This is a table for Kindergarten work.
Family art night was a lot of work, but a whole lot of fun. It was such a joy seeing families creating art together. There was no fee for admission. 


Simple K or Pre-K Spider Webs

I wanted something supper simple for Kindergarten to do for Halloween week. Can't get much simpler then an oil pastel resist. 

Art Center
Rainbow Spider Web
Setup: 2 students share tempera cake pallets, 2 brushes, towel, water bucket, and small tray with two black oil pastels.

I begin each K lesson with their name on the back and then whatever the first tool is that we're using in the air.
First, using your oil pastel (repeat that word back to me) draw a stand up line in the middle from the top to the bottom. 
Next, draw a laying down line through the middle. 
Then, two slash lines (how many?) Start one in the top right hand corner and slash it to the bottom left. Now, start in the top left hand corner and slash it to the bottom right. 
Circle time! 
Point to the middle of your web and draw a small circle, then a medium circle around it, and finally draw draw a large circle around that. Put the pastel in your tray and we're ready to paint. 

Always demo before they begin to paint. I have them hold their brush in the air while they watch me. Don't paint the whole thing while they wait. Just two color changes worth, and don't take forever. 
Swish, wipe, blot! Before you paint and when you change colors.
You may paint your webs. 

These turned out so beautiful!

Once the Art center was on a role I walked over to the play dough center I asked students how to make a spider. 
How many legs does a spider have? How many body parts? 
I had no requirements at the lego table, but many of them built spider homes. (sorry no pics)

Put a Cap on It

I love the pump lids that come with many gallon paints, but good GOSH I can't stand how much they clog... I even stopped using the pumps for a year because I was so tired of sticking a paper clip in there. Alas, I also did not enjoy tipping the gallon over to poor into my smaller paint bottles. 
Smaller paint bottle
I always wondered why someone could not come up with a stopper for the paint like they have for the Elmers glue pumps... Maybe they have, I just haven't found them yet. I don't spend my days googling paint pump stoppers. 
One day it finally hit me. I needed something I could mold to the pump to stay and fit perfectly...
MODEL MAGIC! Why had I not thought of this before? I just rolled a ball and stuck it on there and it fit like a glove.
This little cap comes off easily and is a perfect fit.
I've used it for a month now and no clogs! Thanks Crayola!! 

Art Room Portfolio Organization

I wish I had those flat file drawers or horizonal shelves, but I don't. Here's how I deal with portfolios.

My school is on an A - E day schedule. The first full day of the school year will be A day and we will continue from there. I love it because it ensures that no class will fall behind.

First, I divide my classes by A - E days with heavy cardboard pieces that are taller then the portfolios. It's much easier for me to sort by day then by grade.
"How do all the student portfolios fit in one tub?" They don't, by the end of the year I will need 4-5 tubs. 
 Next, each class is separated by a clip labeled with the class code. 
 As you can see all classes are in order by the schedule and not grade. Another easy way to grab and go or put away.
 Finally, every class has it's own "Master Portfolio" where I put all finished/graded work. Behind the master portfolio will be the student portfolios followed by class table folders that hold continuing projects. 
You may be wondering where the student portfolios are. I don't pass them out until our first "Ketchup Day". I believe that it is more beneficial to introduce the portfolio on the day you will actually utilize it. I usually have ketchup day after every third project. 



Back to School... for ME

 Week one of grad school down!
I have been meaning to do this for years and it just never seemed like good timing and I couldn't decide on the best course. The field of education in Tennessee is crazy right now with new evaluations and student assessments. I will not go into that here. In spite of it all, I love my job and the field I have chosen and I will ride the wave and do my best for me and my students.  I feel like the arts are being pushed to the curb and not being viewed as a necessity. It is a fear of mine that years in the future art could be in jeperdy. I'm a prepared person and I've always had a plan B. I could pursue a masters in Art Education, but I have to think what will be the most beneficial for myself. 
I'm pursuing a masters in curriculum and instruction with a K-6th teaching endorsement. Once my degree is complete I will receive a pay increase, but what is most important to me is that I will have better job security. A masters in Art ed will not save me if they decide my school no longer needs art. If, IF, the arts were to ever go by the wayside, I would be able to teach in the regular ed classroom.
I have always enjoyed learning about the regular ed classroom. While many art teachers grumble and groan about extra duties such as assisting in the regular ed room, I enjoy it, and I understand why we need to help them. I'm very pleased that my principal has not shortened any of the specialists classes to make this happen and I still have my planning time. Assisting in these classrooms has opened my eyes to new teaching strategies, behavior management, and a better understanding of our regular ed counter parts. It has also shown the regular ed teachers that, HEY, these specialists really are teachers and we should support them too! I no longer feel like I am on my own floating island at my school. I can honestly say that I have all the regular ed teachers full support of me and our arts program. 
Yes, the arts are important! We need art in education. But we are educators first. A well rounded education is the most important thing, and now I'm doing that for myself.  
 My inspirations.

Back to Top