Saturday, September 7, 2013

off to a hot start.


My goodness. Nothing like a solid week of near triple digits to kick off the school year. The heat has been oppressive. That said the kids have done a great job keeping it together in our fan cooled classrooms. Only a couple have actually melted;)

Despite the heat, the art learning is off to a great start in room 18. This year, like the past couple years, I did a collaborative project with my 3rd, 4th, and 4th graders the first week. I meet with each of the classes for an abbreviated lesson that focuses on unity and variety. Each student contributes a piece that will be included in a larger work of art.

This year we looked at the work of Lea Anderson, an artist and educator who graduated from our own San Diego State. Her work is a great example of unity and variety in work. I love the way she plays with natural shapes and the way she incorporates patterns in these shapes. There is a strong sense of connectedness in her individual pieces and her larger body of work too.


I showed the students a photo from her Imitation Organics series and I had the students identify how she created unity and variety. After this, I asked students to draw and cut out a circle or oval shape from the paper that was at their table. They then had to create at least 2 patterns on it with the color sticks and markers. What the patterns were, and how they were arranged were entirely up to the individual student.

Each day of this project I had students work with a different set of analogous colors- r/y/o, b/g/y, and r/v/b. Next week I plan to have students come down during my additional class size reduction times and  assemble and glue these shapes onto large sheets of white butcher paper that have 4' circles drawn on them. Once all the pieces are glued, we will assemble them on the back wall of the auditorium.
I can not wait to see these installed together. 

We have been putting the pieces together on the floor in the front of the room this week to get an idea of what the installation will look like, but there isn't nearly enough room for all the large circles. We have 6 of them that are about 4' in diameter each.

I'll make sure to post pics of the installation process and final install when it's done next week, so stay tuned:)










On a side note, this is the 300th post I have written. Number 200 was for the beginning of the year project last year. Funny coincidence. I am so glad I have kept this blog going. It's been a great reflection tool for me, a great way to promote the success of our students, and a great way for me to connect with so many amazing art educators in the blogosphere:)

Here's to the next 100!




23 comments:

  1. Awesome lesson!!! I love how all the pieces came together! :)

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  2. I really like this lesson for a number of reasons:
    1. I love that it's collaborative, especially to start out the school year.
    2. It integrates the elements and principles of art
    3. It's an installation
    4. It introduces and current practicing artist
    5. It looks great!

    I may have to steal this idea from you!
    Have a great year and thanks for sharing :)

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  3. Wow! These are gorgeous installations (in progress)- can't wait to see the finished pieces! I always enjoy your fresh perspective and innovative ideas!

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  4. Terrific!! This would also tie into Peter Reynold's International Dot Day on Sept.15. We participated last year.

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  5. thanks for the kind words everyone. Christie, i'll have to check out the international dot day:)

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  6. Love these! Collaborative work is so appealing.

    We have an installation at a local museum (Bellevue Arts Museum) of over 800 of our woven CDs. Unity/Variety: The Weaving Project...The title refers to the art principles, but also to community. We made over 500 of the weavings, but visitors to the museum can make them and add them to the piece. (Though most have taken their treasure home instead!) :D

    Thanks for taking time to share. Have a great year!

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    1. I love your install at the museum. It really is stunning:)I like the comunity aspect of your project. These beginning of the year unity projects are for me, too, a way of talking about community and diversity in our school and society.

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  7. Hi Don
    What a gorgeous installation!

    I ordered some crayola color sticks because of your projects. They look great on the colored construction paper in this project and in so many of your drawing projects

    Congrats on your 300th post!

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    1. thanks Rina! I love having the kids use the color sticks. they're pretty durable and they look great:)

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  8. Love these!!! I don't know where I'd but something like this...but I will figure it out somehow! :) ha ha Thanks for sharing. Do you have links to the artist?

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    1. thanks ted:) if you click on the artit's name in the body of the post itll take you to her website. good stuff!

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  9. I have read all the responses to your post and agree. I will be trying this. Thank you. I love the feedback that comes from children's collaborative art that's hung in a space for all to see, e.g.; the foyer or hall. It is uplifting. I've pinned this to my 'Group Art' board. I also agree with your reasons for blogging. Also for me it ties everything I do i the art room, together.

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  10. Hello! I realy like your blog and want to say thank you for sharing your projects. I created a Facebook Group for Art Teacher in Brazil and we are enchanted with your work. Best wish.

    My blog > http://educacaoarteanderson.blogspot.com

    Sala de Arte [ Facebook Group ] > https://www.facebook.com/groups/382334951787993/

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  11. Wow! Take a look at artist, Polly Apfelbaum too! https://www.google.com/search?q=polly+apfelbaum&client=firefox&hs=Ggm&rls=com.yahoo:en-US:official&channel=sb&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ei=DMveU6G6OMS1yASQyoDQBQ&ved=0CAgQ_AUoAQ&biw=1280&bih=642

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  12. Hi there - I am about to embark on a series of colour workshops in Wellington, New Zealand and just love this. Looks so effective yet with such diversity of detail. Well done and thanks for sharing!

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    1. thanks for the kind words, Sophie! Enjoy your workshops:)

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  13. I love these! We do a School-Wide Art Project every year (with changing themes) and the collaborative nature of this kind of work is so rewarding! Jan Bennett, Art Teacher at Concord Hill School in Chevy Chase, MD.

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  14. Very inspiring. Thanks! Paintings of my workshop (south of France) on http://ariegepeintureenfant.blogspot.fr/

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  15. Love this! I am stealing this for my first project of the year!

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    1. Have fun with it! Share when you do:)

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  16. This is EXACTLY what I was looking for! STEAM -based tie ins with science, Artist-based, and collaborative! Woo-Hoo!! And Dot Day? Thank you.

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