Grade 2 artists create culturally-specific clay sculptures

The Grade 2 students have been focused on the central idea that people can be enriched by their own cultures and the cultures they connect with throughout their lives. In art class we are focused on the personal connections the children make through their cultural celebrations.

The Grade 2 art students are creating clay sculptures: original artifacts of each student’s experience in reflecting on a cultural celebration that he/she experiences with family (and/or friends).  Having chosen a particular person whom the student associates with this cultural celebration, the children are beginning to move from the practice (play dough) stage to the final (clay) stage of their sculptures.

The students have used these two videos to assist them in their work and to allow them to work at their own pace, accessing the desired instruction as needed. The first video focuses on the basic head, eyes, nose, and mouth forms:

The second video addresses additional details such as the teeth, lips, eyelids/eyelashes/eyebrows:

And — as the human nose seemed to be the most challenging facial feature to model — a third video was created later, as it became apparent that some students needed alternative approaches to sculpting a nose:

Once having modeled and carved a head, eyes, nose, mouth, ears, hair, and the related details in clay, the students’ sculptural heads will each be attached to a clay base, engraved with a name, bisque-fired, glazed in color, and finally glaze-fired.  The artworks will unfortunately not be completed in time for display at the Cross Cultural Lunch on Friday October 4; however, photographs of their works-in-progress will be showcased there.

Here are some images of the students at work in art class:
(unfortunately, FLICKR slideshows are not compatible with phone/tablet displays)

The children are looking forward to sharing their artwork with their parents at the Cross Cultural Lunch!

Kindergarten artists identify themselves visually

The kindergarten art students have begun the year with a focus on themselves! It is part of their current unit in which they focus on the central idea that “personal journeys show the way that people change and can lead to new opportunities.”

Falling under the transdisciplinary theme Where We Are In Place And Time, the kindergarteners begin by constructing self-portraits in the form — not of faces but — of crowns. We’ve discussed what kind of creative work the children did last year in ELC and about the new artwork the will create this year in kindergarten. Students are being challenged to turn a long piece of white paper into a 3-dimensional crown and to transform it into something that represents themselves, their interests, their abilities. Learning about this new art studio environment — the many different materials and tools, where they are stored, how we work together to make and to clean up our projects — is a big part of this early part of the new school year.

The learning objectives of the unit have the children strive to enjoy experiencing artworks, to show curiosity and ask questions about artworks, and to realize that their artwork has meaning. Much of our time thus far has been spent talking about the children’s own experiences thus far in creating artwork and projects (at home, in ELC, with Ms. Brown or Ms. Zoe), reading and discussing storybooks and illustrations, and exploring a wide variety of skills, processes, materials, and tools.

Already, the similarities, differences, preferences, strengths, and unique qualities of the kindergarten students are becoming evident in this first visual art project of 2013-14.

Typhoon 18 & Art

Hi boys & girls,

Because of the typhoon, some of you (1S, KB, 3L, 5B, 4N, plus the Young Artists Group ESA students) will be missing your art class today. I’m certainly sorry about that!

If you’re interested in doing some art today, check the Online Art Resources up at the top of this page — let me know which ones you like or don’t like.

Stay inside and safe today, but don’t forget to look out the window too and see how the environment around you — the sky, trees, land, plants — looks different during a big storm such as this. And listen to the sounds! Did you ever try to draw a sound? An artist named Arthur Dove tried to paint sounds! Look at his painting below and try to guess what sound this is (you can write a comment below if you have an answer):

This artwork may be protected by copyright. It is posted on the site in accordance with fair use principles.

See you soon,

Mr. Reed

Grade 3 warms up with sculpture and self-reflection

The Grade 3 students have embarked upon their first unit “Who We Are” and are addressing the central idea “Exploring different learning styles helps individuals understand each other better”.

Before beginning their first project — collaborative sculptures — the students learned a variety of paper manipulation skills (folding, curling, fringing, looping, and spiraling) and created unique sculptures by combining their different creations together. Students had the opportunity to approach these exercises in different ways: listening, observing, exploring, trial-and-error, and peer-coaching.

Next they spent some time in art class identifying their own strengths and weaknesses as individuals in the areas of drawing, painting, building, measuring, and ideating (thinking up ideas), as well as discussing how they can teach and learn from one another to improve in certain of these areas.

Now they are just beginning to work in small groups — balanced according to their areas of strength/weakness — to create large sculptures which are essentially self-portraits (although they won’t actually be creating their own faces). These artworks will be 3-dimensional paper constructions which describe and reflect the personalities and interests of these Grade 3 students, as decided by each group working collaboratively.