SchoolArts Magazine

NOV 2012

SchoolArts is a national art education magazine committed to promoting excellence, advocacy, and professional support for educators in the visual arts since 1901.

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Capturing the Tooth Fairy The Art Problem How can you capture the wonderment young children feel about fairies in an art project? Objective Students will create their very own tooth fairies using a simplified toothpick floss doll method. Materials toothpicks (four per doll), 1/ 8" (0.3 cm) wooden beads, several colors of embroidery floss, white glue, paper wings, silk flowers, glitter (optional) Procedures 1. Since the tooth fairy comes quietly at night, I took off my shoes, turned off the classroom lights, and, with a flashlight and butterfly net, looked around the room for one. Although I didn't catch any fairies, I did capture my first graders' attention. The innocence and wonderment young children have about fairies is charming. 2. The night before class, I glued the toothpicks together on wax paper and distributed one to each student on the day of class. I used one toothpick for the body, two for the legs, and one toothpick broken in half for the arms. I glued the wooden bead to the top of the body for the head. 3. Students wrapped embroidery floss around the torso and then the shoulders, gluing it in place. A dress was made by sliding a silk flower over the legs. Some students wrapped the legs separately if they wanted their fairies to wear pants. 4. Colorful floss was glued on for hair, and students drew faces on their fairies using colored pencils. Finally, paper wings were cut and glued to the fairy's back. By Craig Hinshaw, an artist and art teacher who lives in Davison, Michigan. He is also the author of Clay Connections (Poodle Press, 2008). Egyptian Symbolism The Art Problem How can students apply their prior knowledge of Egyptian life and culture to a large-scale painting? Objective Students will create a painting depicting one of the gods worshiped in ancient Egypt, focusing on symbols and the stories they tell. Materials practice paper, reference materials on Egyptian paintings and hieroglyphics, pencils, erasers, 18 x 24" (45 x 60 cm) white or manila drawing paper, tempera paint, brushes, newspaper, 18 x 24" colored construction paper, charcoal (optional) Procedures 1. Explain how hieroglyphics are one of the oldest writing systems in the world. Have students reference a handout with the Egyptian alphabet to create a secret message. 2. Have students analyze and discuss Egyptian paintings, including style, symbolism, and colors used. 3. Pass out 18 x 24" white or manila drawing paper and have students lightly sketch their drawings, referring back to the handouts and resources as needed. Early Childhood Middle School 4. Before painting, review the color pallete used during ancient Egyptian times and have students use only those colors. The best way to do this is to put away any paint colors that are not to be used. 5. Once the paint has dried, have students carefully outline their images with black paint. Depending on the level of the class, I let them use charcoal to outline instead. 6. Have students carefully tear around the edges, adding an ancient feel to the piece. 7. Mount the paintings on construction paper and display. Assessment Did students successfully create a representational piece of Egyptian art? Use a rubric to assess the overall design, use of color, and composition. By Stacy Lord, art teacher at Worcester East Middle School in Worcester, Massachusetts. Watercolor Trees Elementary The Art Problem How can students use their perspective drawing skills while learning watercolor techniques? Objective Students will create a drawing of a close-up view of trees and focus on details, texture, and sense of space and depth. The drawings will be painted using watercolor techniques to enhance the sense of space. Materials 12 x 18" (30 x 45 cm) white watercolor paper, drawing pencils, images of various trees, watercolor paints, brushes Procedures 1. Review perspective drawing skills. Examine trees outside or images of trees and focus on how things appear as they get closer and farther away. Have students practice drawing trees in perspective. 2. Students draw a close-up view of one large tree and several smaller ones on watercolor paper. Flying Creature 3. Demonstrate watercolor techniques such as creating shades, wet on wet, wet on dry, and blending colors. Allow students to practice techniques. 4. Begin painting tree drawing. Reinforcing the use of shadows and details on the trees. 5. Display and have class critique. Assessment Did students fill up the composition with one large tree and several smaller ones in the background? Did he or she successfully use the watercolor paints to create the illusion of depth and space in the picture? Did he or she use good artistry in his or her painting? By Traci Hochstetter, art teacher at Pinewood Elementary School in Stuart, Florida. High School The Art Problem How can a students be challenged to create a stylized fantasy creature? Objective Students will create a flying creature in the drawing medium of their choice. Materials 18 x 24" (45 x 60 cm) white sulphite drawing paper, pencils, charcoal, colored pencils, 3 x 5" (8 x 13 cm) note cards Procedures 1. Have students practice casual mark-making—using both bold and lyrical lines—to reflect the abstract idea of flight. 2. Students should draw threeto-five thumbnail sketches of an invented flying creature on 3 x 5" note cards. 3. Ask students to form groups of three and discuss which of their individual sketches is the strongest for completion in a large-scale format for each member of the group. 4. Students should select the best medium for expression, then draw the flying creature on 18 x 24" sulphite drawing paper. They should remember to use bold and lyrical expressive line quality and high contrast. Assessment Use a rubric to assess quality of the creature, line quality, intensity of contrast, and level of design. By Sharon Warwick, art teacher at Winfree Academy in Denton, Texas.

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