Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Leaves are Falling All Around

Kindergarten Fall Leaf Prints 

(And last weeks watercolor exploration is now on display!)


This week, in honor of the arrival of cool, fall weather, the kindergartners made prints using fall leaves!  We began this week with a question:

What is a print? 

Hand prints and foot prints were examples that came readily to mind. From there the children quickly uncovered that a print (in art) is when you press a painted object onto a piece of paper to make a copy of that object. Now we began making prints with paints and leaves!

Supplied with red, orange and yellow/gold paint along with a selection of maples leaves, the kids went to work sponge painting the back (bumpy) sides of their leaves and pressing them onto their black paper. They also had the option of printing with mum flowers to add additional interest to their pieces. Finally all the children were supplied with clean sponges and blue/silver paint and encouraged to carefully dab the blue paint around their leaves and mums... creating a blue sky in the background.

 As you can see they were vibrant with fall colors and quite beautiful. They will go on display outside of Bearville and Poohville as soon as they are dry!


Watercolor Exploration From Last Week is on Display

And for those of you who were curious to see the free watercolor exploration that the children did last week, they are now on display in the main hall of MMS.

Your child's work is displayed vertically.  Close up photos below.

From left to right: Luke, Maya and Deven
From left to right, Benjamin, John and Andrew

From left to right, Andrew, Sameer and "mystery artists" (who forgot to sign their names!)

Parents: a note on viewing your child's art work.

 I know that it can be very hard to refrain from comparing your child's work to others. In fact, it may be impossible. I volunteered for my daughters art class and had a terrible time not intervening to "correct" her when she started veering off the task the teacher had set.

Don't judge like I did! Just remember, when viewing what your child has created that the process and experience the children have while making the art is more important than the final product. They are just begin their journeys into creative expression and the most valuable thing that we can do to help them on their way is to truly value their experience and to support them as they explore new ways to express who they are.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Kindergarten Self Portraits -- In Watercolor!

Self portraits have arrived!

Today the children finished (or almost finished) their self portraits!

We began class with a quick lesson on how best to use watercolors. The most important thing is to be sure that you use lots of water! Never let your brush get dry! The kids warmed up with some small free form pieces. They had a chance to get to know their paints and explore what effects they could achieve. The variety was incredible and the finished pieces were so lovely that I will be hanging these around the school as well.

Then we began working on painting self portraits. This is a real challenge for any artist because watercolor is such a fluid medium. It can be a challenge to feel comfortable and confident but the kids worked well. We began by painting the backgrounds, then moved onto clothes and then finally the faces. We will use oil pastels and colored pencils to clarify the eyes and mouths next class and to give the hair a little more definition and texture.

Wonderful, emotional pieces. I can't wait to hang them!

Next class your child can look forward to making some autumn prints!

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Kindergarten Self Portraits -- Sneak Peek!

It's ME! Early Year Kindergarten Self Portraits

Today we did our first structured drawing class -- the theme was self portraits!
(Plus: Read to the end for a special invitation!)

During this 2 class project the children will be drawing (and then painting) self portraits and make personalized frames. These portraits will be displayed around MMS. They will also be on display at MMS Kindergarten graduation alongside a second self portrait that they will make at the end of the year. You won't believe how much they will grow as artists!

We began our class with some warm up drawing exercises. These are intended just to get the hands moving and to introduce the children to some of the shapes we will be using to draw the features of the face.
Then the kids drew a quick practice portrait. This is where we observed and discussed how the features of the face are arranged. Using a center line and two horizontal lines we divided the head into sections to make it easier to know where and how to add the features.
Then we worked as a class to create the portraits step by step. Next week the kids will be painting their portraits! Adding color will give these sweet faces so much personality! Here are a few sneak peeks of the drawings that were done today. Next week I will include photos of all the completed work. Stay tuned until then!

Conversation starters:
What is a portrait?
What is a self portrait?

Stay tuned for the complete work next week!

 I'd also like to extend a special invitation for you and your children to come to Seven Stones Cafe in Media  during the month of October to see my current art work on display. Here are a few examples of what you will see....

Curious? Swing by on Media's "Second Saturday" (October 10th) between the hours of 6-8pm and I will be there to say hello and answer any questions you and your children might have about the work. I would absolutely love to see you and your children there!