SchoolArts Magazine

AUG-SEP 2008

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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Elementary Studio Lesson It's in the Bag! Alexandria Sturdevant O n any given day, sparkly pinkDisneyrollerbags, polka dot book bags, Spiderman messenger bags, and camouflage backpacks are found bouncing up and down on the backs of children as they walk through the hallways at our school. Finding the right backpack for school is an important part of being a student because it represents individual identity and interests. So, it makes sense to bring subject matter to the art classroom that not only is relevant to students in an aesthetic way, but can also represent their identity and interests. Contour Drawing "paint" on pieces of various colored The project began with a discussion tissue paper using water until their about contour line and how variation backpacks were covered with the in line can produce a sense of volume. paper. The tissue was left on the paper First, I showed students how I would until it dried, allowing the color to approach drawing my own book bag bleed onto the drawing. I explained by positioning an actual bag in a way that the tissue could be torn to fit that would proinside the backduce an interestBring subject matter to the pack and layered ing composition. art classroom that not only to enhance the tieUsing pencil, I dyed effect. is relevant to students, but drew my book bag Students were can represent their identity excited to see the using very slow, meticulous lines. variation in color and interests as well. I also explained and how they could that contour line drawings aren't personalize their backpacks using difmeant to be perfect, which ferent colors and layering techniques. is why the drawings have a Once the tissue was dry, we removed sense of originality and charit, revealing beautiful, well-crafted acter. Students found relief in drawings full of just as much charthis idea, and they drew much acter and personality as the students more loosely and didn't end and their actual backpacks. up feeling discouraged. StuStudents need the opportunity to dents found interesting posifocus on subject matter that is importions for their backpacks tant to them, which increases interest and began their drawings and success with a project. Not only on a 9 x 12" (23 x 30 cm) were they able to learn how to draw piece of white drawing more loosely, but they were able to paper. create art that was just as unique as Once their drawings they are. were complete, I showed Alexandria Sturdevant was a student students how to trace teacher at W.S. Ryan Elementary School their pencil lines with in Denton, Texas when she taught this permanent marker and lesson. Alexandria.sturdevant@gmail. com demonstrated how they should erase their pencil NatioNal StaNdard marks when they were Students intentionally take advanfinished. tage of the qualities and characteristics of art media, techniques, and Tie-Dyed Relief processes to enhance communication The next step in this of their experiences and ideas. lesson involved creating a tiedyed effect with a tissue-paper resist process. I showed students how to Web liNkS www.mmwindowtoart.com/foundations/foundationslinecontour.html www.sunnyday.org/art_lesson_ plans/contour_drawing.htm Anthony, grade four. SchoolArts August/September 2008 39

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