Monday, September 26, 2016


The art room is a pretty messy place sometimes (glue, glitter, paint....and more glitter), but we can learn a lot from making messes and have fun at the same time! I tell students often to avoid wearing their favorite clothes on art day, but especially on paint day. Even with an art shirt accidents can happen, so save your favorite outfits for non-art days. Trust me on this. I have several permanently painted articles of clothing. But I'm the art teacher. So I wear 'em anyway. It's how I roll. 

The very first student art to grace the walls this year was created by our PreK! Wahoo! What a way to start the year! They're BIG, they're colorful, and folks have been stopping in their tracks to check 'em out! Can you blame them?! It's gallery quality work! So let's talk about it...

To get started we pushed up our long sleeves and donned a paint shirt. Safety first! The tables were covered with bulletin board paper and each student had a piece of large white watercolor paper at their seat. I placed newspaper in the middle of the table (I collect newspaper), globbed some black acrylic on it (acrylic doesn't wash out of your clothes and dries waterproof), and placed tubes of various sizes within reach of the kiddos for printing. Some thought this was brave, others thought it was crazy. I call it adventurous

We listened to music. Everyone was focused on their work. Students dipped the tubes into the paint and printed circles, often overlapping, all over their paper. Some made several, some only a few, but they were thoughtful in their choices. Even though they were given the same materials, each work is unique. I love watching that happen in art.

Clean up on days like this can be more than a little cray-cray, needless to say. We are so fortunate to have Natalie Taylor, our PreK teacher aide, swirling around the room. She's amazing! She's great with kids! And she swoops in like a superwoman to help out! 

The next big step was to add some color! This is my favorite!!! Students were given the primary colors (red, yellow, and blue). They're pretty important colors. You can't just mix them, we have to buy those, BUT... you can use them to make a bunch of other colors! Like green, my favorite! The best of all!...If you think about it, artists are kinda like mad scientist magicians. What happens if you mix a little yellow with a little red?.....What?! I can make orange?!?!

Or a little red with a little blue?... Purple?!?! I LOVE PURPLE!!! They were so excited to mix and discover new colors. It gets really exciting when we mix our favorite colors! Then we have to show our friends what we made, and they share what they've made. It's awesome. 

We learned about how to treat paint brushes and watercolor paints. We shared paints and water with the person next to us. We helped each other clean up. We learned where to put supplies when we were finished. We're working on being a team! 

When their paintings were finished and dry, I set to work making frames for each one! Time consuming, but worth it! Their names are displayed, as they would be in a gallery, and each frame is unique. They were so proud when they walked in today and saw their work on the wall. They saw other people stopping to look at it. They heard other people saying positive things about what they made. What a fantastic way to start a Monday! 

Check out those colors! Of course people were talking about it!

To add a bit of whimsy I hung them at a tilt! That might drive a few folks crazy, but they're taped pretty well, so don't try to straighten them out! 

These paintings are so bright and cheerful I'd hang them on the walls of my home! Really, I would! And I'm not the only one who feels that way. Seriously! Coworkers have said they'd hang them in their homes too! Some pretty lucky families out there will have that opportunity very soon, but we needed to jazz up our school so I'm borrowing them for awhile. Thanks for sharing and for  understanding! 

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