Wednesday, November 23, 2016


I just love teaching Mondrian to first graders as one of the first artists they learn about. I try each year to change up the creative process a bit. This year the students did prints with cardboard dipped in paint to create the black lines then they went back the next art class and added color with oil pastel. One of our new curriculum goals is to have students collaborate on a work of art together. This gave me the idea for students to create these Mondrian cubes with their table mates. Plus, a neat way to work with the same subject matter in 2-D and 3-D! Also, check out my new art ed shirt!

Chalk Pastel Sunflowers

Did these turn out beautiful or what!? After learning about the life and art of Van Gogh, third graders created these masterpieces! I found this idea on Pinterest from Jamestown elementary blog! So thank you Jamestown! Many ooooohs and aaaahs in the hallway from passers-by! It was fun to also show the students some Van Gogh artwork that I got to see in person!

Van Gogh Sunflowers

These giant murals were created by first graders! They each painted a sunflower however they liked and then were added into a vase. These looked great in our school staircase this fall!

Birch Tree Paintings

These lovely's were created by 4th graders. We focused on what nature is and how can artists be inspired by nature. We also discussed the parts of a landscape. You can also see a copy of the assessment students had to fill out and then glue on the back of their work.

Thank you Veterans!

Every year I love doing an art lesson about Veterans Day with second graders. We have such meaningful conversations about what a veteran is, what they do, why it is important and if they have any veterans in their life. Many students told me they planned to gift their project to a veteran in their family!

M.C. Escher Tessellations

5th graders learned about the life and art of M.C. Escher through power point. We looked at his tessellations and created our own! The animal shape that you see was a stencil that they had to trace 5 times trying to get it to match up perfectly, not as easy as it looks! You can also see the assessment that the student filled out to be glued to the back of their art. This also dubs as a way to communicate what is being taught in the art room with families!

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Grant Wood Inspired Landscapes

For this lesson we started off reading through some of the pages of Mike Venezia's Getting to Know book about Grant Wood. I love telling them the story about how American Gothic came to be and showing them a photo of me in front of the original in Chicago! Great opportunity to discuss the difference between copies and originals. We discussed the difference between portraits and landscapes and we did a step by step drawing of a horizon line, barn, trees, fence, sun (always encouraging them to add their own ideas because they are the artist!) ....The next class, after reviewing, we talked about pattern and drew the lines in the landscapes with patterns in them. Then they traced everything with a chisel tip sharpie. The next class was coloring in small details with construction paper crayons and then adding liquid watercolor paints. Students also had to show me an understanding of vocabulary by filling out an assessment to be glued to the back of their artwork. This project took longer than I anticipated, (4 classes) but they worked so hard and I am pleased with the results!

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Floating into a great school year!

First project of the year! Bubble drawing with 3rd, 4th and 5th graders!

Let's Shine this Year!

Back to school bulletin board! Hope you all have a great 2016-17 school year!

Art this summer!

I lucky that my kids love art so much! They beg to do it! This summer we went to an amazing place called Bookworm Gardens in Sheyboygan Wisconsin. It is a botanical gardens with sculptures and interactives for kids all revolving around children's books. Loved that we found some art related sculptures! My 6 year old son has such a huge passion for art. He wants to be an art teacher when he grows up. :) At our cabin this summer we made art with things found in nature.

Friday, May 27, 2016

Papier Mache Animals

5th graders created these papier mache animals using recycled materials! You can see from the bottom picture here, they used creamer shaped bottles, news paper, tag board and tape to create their armature for their animal. The next art class they had to distress one color of construction paper and papier mached over their armature. The class after they drew on details (eyes, mouth, legs) with pencil and went in and painted it these details. The class after they decorated with yarn, pipe cleaners, gems, ribbon, what ever they needed! I love when students say, "I wan't to do this"...."How can we do that?" and we brainstorm how to can do it! That is what art is all about, problem solving! I just adore these three unicorns and how they each went about decorating it differently!

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Hot Air Balloons!

4th graders made these awesome papier mache hot air balloons. We started with a small balloon and taped a small dixi cup to the bottom. Then the kids mached the entire thing with paper (I didn't have enough newspaper or brown paper bag) which worked fine. The next day they picked one color construction paper to mache over the entire thing. Day after they cut out designs and mached them on. Last day, they attached the basket with string! I used an exacto knife to cut the bottoms (baskets) off before class. They look great hanging up even though my picture is kind of dark!