SchoolArts Magazine

March 2015

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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Page 31 of 70 23 stressed that these materials should be used to create contrast and a full range of values to give brightness and shadows to the work. I explained that they were to work on large roll paper while standing at the wall. Student work ranged in size from three to five feet. Although it may not be possible to have students do this in a standard artroom set - ting, you could scale down the paper size to a manageable 18 x 24" (46 x 61 cm) and complete the paintings on tables instead. Students drew their compositions in regular pencil and then worked on larger areas first, add - ing details and textures later. It was important to let the painted areas dry fully before applying drawing media because the roll paper became too fragile and tore easily. The Results of Observation At the end of the lesson, we all looked around the room and marveled at the original images and unique ways each student artist used the same subject matter and media. It was fun to ask students and teachers who stopped by, "What do you think these painting are about?" and to see their faces light up when students explained how they observed the pinecones and came up with these images. This lesson helped students improve their observational skills, their development of original ideas, and their drawing and painting tech - niques. The two activities did a nice job of balancing tight and loose tech - niques with wet and dry media. Most importantly, students came away from the lesson with a greater appre - ciation for the possibilities of finding inspiration in the everyday. Jana DeSimone is a National Board Certi- fied art teacher and former Rhode Island Middle Level Art Educator of the Year. She taught this lesson as a summer fac - ulty member in the Continuing Education department at the Rhode Island School of Design. She is also an art teacher at Aldrich Junior High School for the War - wick Public Schools. W E B L I N K

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