Tuesday, 26 February 2013

"Ghetto" Pulleys

While I've mostly blogged about my art classes and bulletin board displays, today I have a different subject to blog about - Science.  I never thought I would be teaching science - It is not my strongest subject in any way.  However, I have had a ton of fun teaching science to Grade 2!  Our first unit was on Animals.  While students love animals, and love learning about them, I found this unit hard in the fact that there wasn't much for experiments.  Science is one subject that you can truly do hands on learning, but I found that to be more tough with studying animals.  (If anyone has any ideas for me, please message me!!)  We then had a unit on Matter and Materials.  This unit was great, in the fact that we had an experiment almost every science class!  Learning about solids, liquids, and gases always have engaging activities to do with the students.

Now, we are learning about Simple Machines.  So far we have worked with pushing and pulling forces and inclined planes.  Just recently we worked with pulleys.  Being the procrastinator I am, the night before the lesson I looked everywhere for a good pulley activity...I thought it would be no problem!  Nope, not true.   Everywhere I looked, making a pulley required wooden spools.  Unfortunately, I don't just have wooden spools hanging around...and I especially can't find one the night before the lesson :).   So I decided to make my own pulleys out of some stuff I had in our apartment:  toilet paper rolls, a pizza box, and a glue gun.

They turned out like this:

Here's how I made it:

I took a toilet paper roll and cut it in half.  I then cut out two circles from the pizza box, and with a glue gun I glued them together.  The students simply had to stick a pencil through the middle, put some yarn around the pulley, tie a load to the yarn...and voila!  A pulley!  Mind you, it wasn't the strongest pulley ever, but it did the trick to show the students what a pulley is.  And they had fun with it anyways!

Now, here's hoping for a snowy day tomorrow - too snowy for school perhaps? can only dream.

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Advertisements and Perspective

Since Grade 6 did such a great job persevering through their long Pointillism project (see here), I wanted to give them something a little more fun for their next project.  I decided to work on advertisements with them.  I found this great idea on the following blog:  Mrs. Dahl: Projects from the Classroom .   

I had the Grade 6s make an advertisement for candy or a chocolate bar of their choice.  The catch was, the candy bar had to be 3D on their paper.  They were given cardboard, tin foil, felt, and any other scrap they could find to use.  The candy bar had to be 3D and the rest of the paper had to be advertising this candy bar.  This project was different from any I had given them yet this year - their first 3D project.  The results were great!  (You will notice a lot of colourful dots - They found some bingo dabbers and could not get enough haha)

Pop Up Advertisements - Grade 6

I just find these so creative!  Definitely a little more enjoyable for the students than the pointillism as well :)

While Grade 6 was allowed to let their creativity shine through their project, I did a little more of a  structured project with the Grade 4 class - One Point Perspective.  Since the focus for Grade 4 is the element of line, I thought it was a good grade to do some perspective drawing with.  I found this great lesson plan (with drawing steps and everything!) on the following blog: smART Class .  These steps were amazing and so helpful!  I will admit - perspective is not my strong point.  But these steps made it so easy to teach!  And helped the students come to a very clear understanding of it.  I highly recommend checking out her blog if you are considering teaching perspective!  Here are a few of the results:

One Point Perspective - Grade 4
While I told the students they could either do a street scene or a river scene they all chose street.  I had them colour with pencil crayons all the detailed items, and then do the background with watercolour.  If I was to do it again, I definitely would have had them colour with crayons and cover the background with watercolour after that, so that the crayon would nicely show through the watercolour.

Well that's all for now. This week, Grade 6 is working on making dinosaurs out of paper bags, tin foil, plaster-sine, toilet paper rolls, and paint. I am really looking forward to seeing the end results!  This is how far we are:

Well, enjoy your week and thanks for stopping by!  Feel free to leave me a comment or two! :)

Picasso and Pointillism

Alright - Valentines Day is over, Report card season is coming to an end (finally), and tomorrow is the last day for clubs (yes, my school has clubs and I am in charge of cooking this semester - not the easiest club with Grades 1-3 :) - time for some blogging!  There have been many art projects that I've done in the past month or so that I've been super excited about and have been dying to share!  

Let's start with some obvious ones.  Picasso and pointilism.  These are two projects that I feel are necessary for students to have had at least once in their elementary years of art...but also time consumin.  Sometimes, they feel over done - but perhaps that's more of the teacher's view than the students.  

I worked on Picasso portraits with Grade 5.   I had the students draw a pencil sketch of their own portrait while looking at a mirror.  We went through the steps of how to draw a face, what goes where, and how to make it with the best proportion possible.  We then looked at different Picasso drawings, specifically looking at the abstraction, bright colours, and cubism used. Keeping this in mind, they drew their face again, except disoriented it, the way Picasso would have. I don't think I did as good of a job as I could have in teaching the students how to disorient the face on their portraits (as you will probably be able to see in the end result).  It's really important at this stage to have them disorient their face step by step.  The students then painted their face with watercolour paints, only using bright colours.  Last step - outlining each section with black marker.  

Here's how some of them turned out:

Picasso Portraits - Grade 5

Pointillism was done with Grade 6.  We first discussed Georges Seurat's usage of pointillism and why pointillism was used.  I then allowed the students to drawing any picture they chose (making sure they didn't draw too much detail in their pictures, so that the pointillism wouldn't take absolutely forever) and they used markers to make their pointillism pictures.  At the beginning, they were excited and really enjoyed it.  By the end, they just wanted to be done!  It took about 3 periods...and I could tell by the end the students were just so excited to move on to a new project!  But they pushed through and the results turned out great!  Here's a few of the results:

Pointillism - Grade 6

Stay tuned for my next blog post about the most recent art projects done with Grade 6 on Advertisements and Grade 4 on Perspective!