Saturday, December 18, 2010

THE DIGITAL STORY OF NATIVITY - ( or Christmas 2.0 )

Friday, December 17, 2010

November and December Projects

Grade 7 Human Faces Project involves sketching the human face, sketching a self-portrait, painting a self-portrait on canvas and finally painting in 2 minutes a self-portrait with no paintbrush!
Mask-masking of the human form is next. The students love to create a mask with beards, mustaches, noses, ears and other lumps on the mask. Once painted (with eyes closed), they are allowed to glue on various accesories such as hair, earrings, glasses and caps to cover the head.

As tough as it is to direct the students to create a human form rather than a more creative creature, they like making it look realistic with the accessories. So, I try to buy cheap hats and glasses at liquidation stores and doll hair for hair rather than yarn.

Grade 8 Anime Project involves sketching anime faces, anime facial parts such as different noses, eyes and ears, anime bodys in exagerated proportions and finally an anime character. After painting the anime character, the students then make a mask from a human form. They must build up the eyes and minimize the mouth by painting the mask skin color and the eyes bright black colors. Then they attach foam hair in sparkling bright colors to create the pointy block hairstyles of anime.
The results are amazing and once again, the students have fun realizing art can be achieved through different mediums.
Mask making is a lot of prep work but is rewarding to the students. They love seeing their displays of their creations.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Fall Leaves Projects

Every fall I try to paint using the influence of nature. I paint on leaves, with leaves and this year made leaf pictures. I also do a leaf watercolor project. It is easy and the students find success doing it. Here is the link to how it is done: Easy Watercolor Project For Fall.
When using leaves for pictures I used leaves from strawberry plants, peonies and geranium petals. They turned out lovely. All students needed were glue sticks. Some tried to make animals out of their materials. They only last a few days on the display wall but it was worthwhile to do.
Finally, I made rice paper with students using leaves. Also used strawberry leaves in this project with chrysanthemums and gerianium petals. Looked great on the Grade 4, 5, and 6 windows!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Textured Drawing Teaching Tips and 10 Easy Tips for Teaching Drawing

Here are some simple drawing techniques for you to use with grade 4 and 5 and beginners at drawing. Drawing Lesson on Textured Drawing.  They are simple practice lessons to help you find an art activity. They are part of an article on Tips for Teaching Drawing which include lessons for grades 1 to 8.
 Try them as you see fit! Don't forget to post any questions or comments you have to me here at this blog or at the article's site.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Mountain Dew Bench is complete!

After promising to update the pop art park benches in the school's park, I was able to finally paint the bench on the top of the hill. It was easy to complete the theme - a Mountain Dew on the mountain. So in July when there seemed to be 2 consecutive days with no rain, I went to update the 5 benches my students and I had painted in the spring of '08. It took 7 hours to repaint, repair and revamp them before I could begin the last one. At 7:30 at night with clouds looming I went home to rest. The next day my mind was set and I completed the last bench. It only took about 4 hours as I had painted the background shape the day before.  I was happy with the results and satisfied that I had completed the job. I hope it will leave a lasting impression on the school, the park, the community. The benches really pop!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Mothers Day Scratch Art - Spring Scratch Art Project

You can do scratch art anytime, but I used it for a Mother's Day project. Since I used flowers it is a good spring/summer design to use in May and June. Tulips, roses, sunflowers, all work well. I also made frames of silver tin foil rubbed with black paint. The silver scratch art paper is unusual and creates beautiful effects so should be used on simple pictures. The method and steps are written in the Scratch Art For Spring Article.

It was easy to do and I would do it again. The frames were a little harder to create effective designs so I would try a new frame next time.

Friday, June 11, 2010

June Jitters

June is a busy month. Changes come fast. Weather gets you going. Up with the sun, down with the rain. Coffee to wake you up, tea to settle you down. Lots of trips, lots going on, lots yet to do, lots to see. Spirits to rise, spirits to take flight and spirits to say goodbye. I like to run in the green grass in a late night soccer game in June. I teach pop art at this time in art, powerpoint (or photostory) presentations in computers, and flight aviation in science. Its a fun time of year and still there is new things to learn. Use this as the most concentrated, yet fun time to teach and learn. If a project doesn't get done, it doesn't. And yet somehow it all does. We get tired and we have to remember that we'll catch up on sleep in July!

Here's a video of a group called "In June"...."All I Have"

Friday, April 16, 2010

Grade 7 Art Lessons - The Human Face

A self-portrait??? Yes, hard to believe but I did it. It was after I drew myself and then transferred it to canvas. After that we got to do a two-minute self-portrait. So much fun!
If I could do it, then I knew my students could do it. So after that workshop I taught lessons on how to draw the human face, paint your own face and then do a fun 2 minute painting using no brush!

The results are quite great and surprising to the students. So for 2 or 3 years now I have used this lesson in grade 7. In grade 8 we do more of the anime faces and Japanese anime known as manga.

Here are the 3 lessons I wrote about the methods, materials and hints for drawing, then painting faces. Really good advice I used: How to Draw Human Faces
Painting Realistic Self - Portraits

and Mask Making of Human Faces

Trying to draw magazine faces just didn't help the students' confidence too much. It is a good introductory lesson. Have the students draw the faces from magazines upside down to get their right side of the brain working and looking for contours. Post their drawings right side up with the magazine face right beside.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Math Made Sensible

Some math can described so simply and other math is so full of jargon, terms and specific conditions that students get lost. By clarifying basic strategies to solving math concepts, practicing and doing things step by step, some math can be made sense of. I wrote a guide for teaching a calculus concept called limits. Then I wrote up some sample questions and solutions, for students in grade 12 to follow. I learned this when I was in grade 12. So passing on these strategies has been satisfying.
You'll find great teaching tips for this concept in the article: Calculus Limit Problems Made Easy.
Then accompanying study guide for students is in the article: How to Solve Calculus Limit Problems.
The special cases of limit problems is in a separate but related article called: How to Solve Special Cases of Calculus Limit Problems
The articles are all linked together and provide examples wih a sheet of solutions. It is free Calculus help for students and teachers alike. Hope it is useful.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Creatures - Fun Easy Symmetry Art

As a last minute make a pretty Valentine project I thought we could cut hearts out of paper and smush paint along the fold, open it up and have a psychedelic design. Since we had to let the acrylic paint dry, we made a second one where the students got to choose the colors they wanted in the painting. We opened them up to see a design created that later you can turn into a creature or whatever you see in the paint. This is such an easy project. Its messy as the paint oozes out of the paper when you fold it. Also, the paint sticks to the paper. However it teaches symmetry and using creativity to create something out of the paint blob. What creatures do you see in these examples?? I see a bee, a moth, an ice cream cone and a globe.
An article about the method and other examples of symmetry in art can be found at Bright Hub.
Here is the link to the Colorful Art Using Symmetry article.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Valentines Day Watercolor Project - 3 Styles

Painting a watercolor background in purples and pinks is the start of this project. Once the background is wet, you can use heart blocks wrapped in tissue to blot up heart shapes in the background. These are filled in with painted Valentines messages.
The background can also be stamped with white acrylic stamped hearts. These are nice and easy to do. Thirdly, you can cut out hearts from the background and paste them onto a watercolor background. Grade 1's can do this.

You can also sketch hearts on a smaller watercolor paper and then paint each heart in with 2 colors of watercolor such as yellow and red. This makes a nice bouquet of hearts. 3 projects, all easy to do!

All three ways of doing this have been written at Art from the Heart: Watercolor Valentines Day Art Project
Which one do you like doing the best???

Monday, February 1, 2010

Watercolor Winter Projects - Fun and Easy

Watercolors can create excellent and easy art. In grade 4 we created a winter scence using blues and purples for the sky, greys for the snow and fisnished with white snow on grey trees.
See the article called Winter Watercolor Landscapes Lesson.
Also in grade 4 we used a frosted window scene for a smaller 4 by 6 watercolor. Using grey and pink sky colors, we also painted in a branch and a window sill. The glass looks frosty by adding glitter to the painting after its dry. Try this one as its a nice effect. Use plastic to make crinkles and and lines in the wet paint to help draw the frost on later. See the article Winter Watercolor Window Art at Bright Hub for all the steps, pictures, hints and tips.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Fall Art Projects

This fall I did fall watercolor leaves with grade 4 and 5 students, carved gourds with 7's and 8's, and made clay arthropods with science grade 6 students. I have written articles on the methods at Bright Hub for these projects. The science creatures were very fun to do. The invertebrates are displayed with cards describing the adaptations. If you have access to clay and a kiln, try this art/science project!
Details are found at: Making Clay Arthropods-A Fun Science Activity.

The carved gourds was interesting, a bit difficult for grade 7 and 8 students but we had fun trying. I discovered many things you can make with gourds as a craft, but are time consuming. Candles, bowls, purses and drums were a few of the interesting cultural crafts made from them. We simply carved them and made them brown by applying shoe polish. The article and method is at: Gourds and Gourd Art Etching

Watercolor leaves was a fun and easy watercolor project where the students drew leaf shapes and painted in 2 colors and then filled in the background. They were displayed altogether and it was a lovely fall display. I would do this again. The article with the steps is found at: Easy Watercolors for Fall