Simple Kinder Snowman Painting

Just a reminder that my kinder art lessons are done in 15 minute centers. This one was done at the painting center and will be finished next week at the crayon center.

12"x18" any color construction paper
white paint
Q Tips

First we paint the ground with a long Curvy Line.
Then paint 3 circles for the snowman.
Paint the snowman.
Next add snow flakes with Q tips. 
Students love to make it look like a snow storm!
Stay tuned for Part 2 with construction paper crayons! 

When students are finished they place the work on the drying rack and then grab some damp wash clothes to clean their hands and then their table. They love to clean!!

Space with Snow Globes Part 1

(project not finished)

To begin this lesson we looked at the art of Georges Seurat 
Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte
This work gives a wonderful example of Foreground, Middle Ground, and Background
Explain what each word means and then discuss what and who from the art work are in the different Spaces.
Who is in the Foreground? "The lady with the big bottom!"
How do you know she's in the front? "She's big!"
As we continue the discussion we also talk about Small, Medium, and Large.
I then pick a few students to stand in each Space in the room. I move around the room while the standing students stay in place to show how the Space they occupy changes as the viewer moves around the room. 
The students quickly get the point. 

Now for the lesson. 
Space with Snow Globes
Supplies: any color 9"x12" construction paper
   4"x6" brown or tan construction paper for the base of snow globe
   circle template to be traced for globe
   black crayons
   construction paper crayons
Begin by having students select their color paper. Trace the circle template for their globe and cut out. Students help each other by one student holding the template and they other tracing and then they switch. Name and Code on the back.

Drawing: I demo each step on the board and the students follow along.
Draw what's in the Foreground first. The snowman sits at the bottom and his head comes to the middle of the globe. I use a lot of shape words to help students draw.

Middle ground Trees: Put finger on the snowman's belly and move to the side. Draw a standing up rectangle for the tree trunk and a triangle for the top of the tree. Do the same for the tree on the other side, but maybe have this tree start to the side of the snowman's neck.

Background mountains: Draw a horizon line to show where the ground stops and the mountains begin. When you draw your line make sure you stop when you hit something, then pick up, and start your line on the other side. Now draw zig-zag lines for the mountains. Show snow on your mountains by adding more zig-zags. 
Students add details and trace drawing with a black crayon. (I left this part out in some classes just to see which I liked better)
Use construction paper crayons to color your globe. 

Stay tuned for the finished project complete with base!
(Whenever I get back to school that is...Snow day #16!)


13 Snow days later....

   13 snow days later I am feeling overwhelmed... Two weeks ago my Principal calls me over the intercom and tells me to, "LEAVE NOW, THE SNOW IS COMING!" I quickly gather my things and head out. Why does she call me and tell me to get out? I live 30 minutes away from my school. I drive West and the weather always comes in from the West. 

   I get home just in the nick of time. The snow turns into 7 inches and counting for my area of Tennessee. The childhood joy of knowing that I will awake to a snow day in the morning makes me jump. Though I am still an apartment dweller and have no yard, snow is still awesome.... Until I realize that in my quick departure I left one of my most important possessions..... my planner!! 
   The snow event turned into 7 snow days. We had 6 before on the heels of Christmas break. I finally drove the 30 minutes back to the school to retrieve my book and get things prepared in my room on the one day they opened. I was relieved to see many other teachers there who had also caught cabin fever. 
  Now 13 snow days later and and gazing out the window of the third snow event to hit Tennessee I give you a glimpse into my planner....

   Now with 13 snow days and more to come, we are out of days!! We will now begin to tack off days of our spring break. Many of you in the North may wonder what the fuss is about. 
   It doesn't snow much in Tennessee. I mean that it doesn't snow constantly. It was odd to have snow days in December. We often get hit maybe once with a huge snow event that happens in late January and early February. Therefor, our state and counties do not spend tons of money on huge equipment to clear roads. Not worth it if it doesn't happen that often. So we have many built in days. My school system even goes 30 extra minutes everyday just to be able to have the # of snow days we are allowed. 
  So I may not have a Spring break this year, but at least I came home prepared for the long spring semester! 


Fundraiser II

   I am lucky to be at such a great school that has a nice art budget, but it is always nice to do a little fundraising to take your art program to the next level. I always plan for two fundraisers a year. Fall Festival clay pinch pots and the art show. This post is going to be all about Fall Festival.
   At the end of last year I had a lot of extra clay in a bag or two which equaled to about 25lbs give or take... Fall Festival was just around the corner and I had an idea. Take the extra clay and have kids make them into small pinch pots for fall festival! As you would recall my last post about The Clay Lady and her make and paint all in one seating program. I would use this same program for Fall Festival. Here's how I did it:

1. Ask for some help! I have asked teacher friends who didn't have a booth and my husband to help out. Even parent volunteers.

2. Roll extra clay into small fist sized balls. (I don't have to wedge my clay because I use the clay lady method of firing that insures no blow ups) Keep in closed bag with damp cloth during festival.

3. Arrange your classroom for Stations. I do a kinda L shape
Here is how the order goes:
  A. Paying station: tickets or cash (teacher friend Kristina with clay examples)
  B. Making station: show how to make the pot, put name & grade on bottom of pot, place on a small paper plate with grade 

  C. painting station: I have warm colors on one table & cool on another.
  D. Drying station: Clay drying rack
  E. Sink for washing hands (notice I placed the drying rack next to the sinks!)

4. When all my leftover clay is gone.. It's over! I have older students come and help wipe down my tables and rearrange my room. 

With the Clay Lady Way firing I have the clay pots dry to bone dry at least a week. Dip in Clay Lady glaze. Fire in the kiln one time but it's a two day fire process. I put the pots into the kiln by grades so if they don't all fit at once I can at least get a few grades done. When all pots are finished I will make announcements at the end of the day for students to come down by grades to pick up. 

Was it worth it? YES! HUGE SUCCESS! 96 clay pots made! I made enough to pay for way more than what the one 25lb bag of clay costs and 1/4 of each color of my clay paints were actually used. I also bought one package of small paper plates for $2.96. The longest process was rearranging my tables so that parents and students wouldn't just wander around the room. 


Thank you Clay Lady!

I am so grateful for the generous donation of all our clay supplies by Danielle McDaniel "The Clay Lady"
The Clay Lady adopts a school each year. Normally we only have enough money in our budget for a few grades to do clay. The students were so excited to hear that they would all get to do CLAY!! 
Here is why "I teach clay The Clay Lady way!"

The projects are made and decorated in one sitting. There is only one firing per project load. After only air-drying the project, you can glaze and do just one firing to complete, enabling you a 7-10 day turn-around on projects. The Clay Lady Way® of firing guarantees no blow-ups! 

Check out The Clay Lady for yourself. 

Made in one class and being painted with Clay Lady Clay Paints

You can also make in one class, cover in plastic and then continue another day.

Air dried projects.

Glazed and fired one time!! No blow ups!
(these pics are from my cell phone. Sorry for the quality.)


Paint vs. Paint

   I love painting projects! Though it comes with it's highs and lows. I haven't always been a fan of tempera paint. I think it has to do with the feel of it. The hard egg shell feel makes me think of a chalk board. EEK! But I do like the results and use it all the time. 
   The tempera cakes are brought out for nearly every painting lesson except for the lessons that just need a few select colors. The cakes are easy to use and get ready for a class. The only bad thing about them is you can only get really good results on white paper. If you paint them on color construction paper you will have to apply many coats. 

When I have a lesson with just a few select colors I go for the student grade liquid tempera that I dispense into palettes or small clear plastic cups on a tray.  I love the results here too, but I still like how you can just pull the tempera cakes off the shelf and just go! Dispensing the liquid paint takes class time and so much prep time. Though all prep time is a labor of love. 
   Acrylic would have to be my favorite, but it is so pricey and wastes quick! My after school Art Enrichment class is the only one that uses the acrylic. 
   I am also toying with the idea of purchasing new paint pumps. I like using big gallons and being able to dispense them quickly and easily for whatever purpose. I currently use this little trouble maker.
I can't stand this THING! It clogs all the time. I can't clean them fast enough.

   I am wanting to purchase one of these. I feel like it will be much easier to use. Why all the fuss? I want to know what's the best for your buck! What do you use in your class rooms?


   Finally, I am creating for myself again! I am not the best artist. I can't find my own inspiration. I always need a prompt. Well this Christmas gave a lot of prompts. First, I drew my husband's aunt's name for Secret Santa. She told me (before she knew I drew her name) that she had always wanted something made by me. So pressure was on.
   I have not truly created my own stuff in a long time... maybe a year or two! I was determined to get back in the game. Fortunately, mother nature helped me out by giving my county lots of snow days before Christmas! So, bored and stuck, I got to work. 
  The aunt has two of the cutest dogs and they are like her children. I love those two doggies to death. I'm a huge animal lover, which sort of inspires me. Her husband emailed me some pics of the pups and here is what I came up with:
Sammie, acrylic, 8"x10"
Becca Ruth
Meet Sammie. She is a loving girl. A mix breed of some sort, but she doesn't care. She is laid back and has the softest fur of any dog I know. Sammie makes me think of warm colors because of her personality. The background is a mix of yellows and oranges. I even took an old picture frame, primed, and repainted it to look a bit distressed. 
Emma, acrylic, 8"x10"
Becca Ruth
This is EMMA! Emma is a happy happy puppy. A Jack Russell Terrier that really lives up to the breed. She loves her "babies" or toys rather and will do anything to keep them away from Sammie. She also loves her Momma Jennifer. Emma's coloring is a unique blend of browns, grays, and white. She also looks sassy in her pink collar. My favorite part about painting this picture was her wirey fur. I just love texture! 
If you're wondering why I didn't center these two pics, it's because I don't like to put the subject of my works in the center. They would have looked more off center if I would have remembered that I only had 8x10 frames.... I painted the portraits on 9x12...

Lastly, I made my first cake!! I love the craze with all the cake shows on television. The Cake Boss is my favorite. I was given a cake decorating set by my brother and his family last Christmas and have been practicing off and on ever since. So after many You Tube tutorials..... here it is!!
Not the Next Great Baker.... but not too bad for my first. I can't wait to make more!! 


New Year

   On the last day of my winter break I'm thinking of and; I'm not gonna lie, dreading tomorrow. I love my job, but breaks are wonderful. Those who do not teach don't understand the wonderful joy we educators take in our breaks. Teaching young minds is the greatest opportunity in the world and the breaks are just a bonus. I wouldn't trade my job for anything. 
  This school year has already been crazy! My wedding took most of my time from August to October, but I never let my job nor my duties slip. I am proud of the work and lessons taught during the first semester. I am still a "New" teacher and of course I am always wanting to improve my curriculum. So I constantly scan blogs, read art education books, blog and develop new and exciting lessons. I can't wait to see what 2011 brings. 

Here are some New Year's resolutions for my classroom:
More 3D sculpture projects
All classes get to do clay this year! (Thanks to Dainelle McDainel The Clay Lady)
Wild About Art themed Art Show in May (my first year to take on a theme)
Constant good classroom management
Maintaining the school website ( I am one of the webmasters)
Making the rest of this year count!

There may be big changes with 2011. My husband graduated last May and is on the job hunt for his great career. I know he will be great at whatever he does. With his possible career opportunities may come a change in location. New doors may open. I would miss my students horribly and this is why I want to give them my best for the rest of the year. 

Here's to all you Art Eddys out there! Raise your glass to a wonderful 2011!
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