Saturday, March 21, 2015

Form, Fish and Inspiring Mistakes in Kindergarten

This outcome of this project was inspired by running
out of white paper and forgetting to use stickers!
Did you know I take my kindergarten students through the elements of art?  It's really the only place you'll ever see me focus on them in my curriculum.  I just like that I can teach so many procedures and materials by playing and experimenting with the elements and recognizing them in other artworks.  My first through fifth grade curriculum is all big idea based.  It works well having this materials/elements/play foundation and in first grade we are ready to roll with storytelling, heroes, nature, celebration, and all the other big ideas we explore.  At the end of the day though, how do you save an art program based on line and shape and color?  You don't, which is why we create meaning and the elements become what use to create that meaning. 

So when it came time to talk about form we make cubes and cylinders and even try a pyramid all made out of play-dough. Students then make a pinch pot and are introduced to the ceramic process. While the pinch pots are drying I wanted students to see how forms are used in drawings and paintings.  (I'm already thinking I need to add a 3D pen to this lesson and draw!  Have you seen them?  I want one! I'm hoping they'll be at NAEA 2015 convention!)
Copied and in my binder! 

My first year teaching kindergarten was TOUGH.  I came from a high school and middle school background so I was really lost.  School Arts was my paper blog and it was perfect timing that Darcy M. Swope came out with Matisse + a Math Connection in the February edition, exactly when we’re learning about forms. Inspired by the idea, I’ve been having kindergarten recreate Matisse's Goldfish ever since and this year the lesson evolved from some art teacher mistakes! 

First mistake: I ran out of white paper! Seriously!  I’ve been going into reserves and those dusty packs in the back of the closet.  (It's actually been a very decluttering experience!) I had this gray card stock paper donated and after looking at Matisse’s Goldfish painting I realized the gray actually works well as a background color.  It was a happy mistake I ran out of white because the paints (Crayola Florescent Premier) dried beautifully over the dark paper.  I also had these fish eye stickers that I’ve got for Gyotaku printing, and then forgot to use! Another mistake…but a happy one because it made the kindergarten fish come alive and have these cute personalities, just like my kindergartners who I now love teaching!

I love how some students painted the reflection they saw in Matisse's painting! 

I printed the cylinder on the paper ahead of time.  I just used Publisher to create it. 

The fish eyes stickers really brought personalities to all the fish!
I think I have to buy them now every year for this project!

Displayed with Matisse's Goldfish

No comments:

Post a Comment