Showing posts from July, 2015

Abstract Designs

With a strong focus on representational art we thought it would be interesting to introduce the children to the concept of non representational or abstract art.  Line, shape and color have been themes running through our summer. This was a different type of art experience that allowed them to revisit these concepts. We had the children use a black sharpie to draw one continuous line without lifting the pen from the paper. The line can be straight, curvy, zigzagging or loopy. When they were done we invited them to color in the shapes using watercolor pencils.  They turned out bright, vibrant and beautiful.

Drawing by the book

This project grew organically while searching for inspiration in books for various art ideas. Because this class has been very interested in representational art all summer, we brought these books in to allow the class to further their exploration in drawing while also practicing following directions.  Our illustration book gave us step by step instructions detailing how to draw various animals. The interested children picked a subject and began practicing the various shapes that made up their subject with pencil. After drawing their animal of choice they outlined the animal in marker to mark a clear boundary in order to practice staying inside the lines.  Is this animal a mammal, reptile, etc?  What color do you think this animal is? 
What environment do you find these animals in? These were some of the questions we asked during and after.  Doing this repeatedly provided us endless chances in practicing lines, shape, and realism. They are a great extension to our library and a great stepp…

Dropper Bottle Painting

This was a simple yet tricky activity. The dropper bottle is a great way to practise fine motor skills. You need to squeeze the dropper just right or too much paint comes out. It takes a certain amount of control and concentration. The older children in the class had more success for obvious reasons but the younger children had just as much fun.


We read the book "Rain Talk" at snack time...We talked about the rain ( it was a very rainy day) . After our discussion we asked the children if there was anything in particular they wanted to do during our free/ art time. Some one said "make rainbows!" and the rest of the class agreed. We set out only the primary colors and wrapped plastic wrap around a board. We asked the children to show us what a rainbow looks like. It turned out to be a great way to revisit color and printing. They painted on the plastic wrap and pressed white paper on top of their painting. It was cool to see how the colors mixed together on the paper making the other colors they needed for the rainbow. A few of the bigger children decided to make really big rainbows!

Clay And Stick Sculpture

We set up the blue vase/apple still life again and invited the children to recreate it this time using clay and sticks. We introduced the word "sculpture" and talked about how this medium was different from painting.  Some took to the medium very easily while others struggled a bit with how they could make the clay look like the vase. For everyone is was a great chance to get a feel for the clay in their hands and an opportunity to see visual representation of objects in a different way.

Still Life Prints

As an extension activity we made still life monoprints. We used black paint and a non porous board. The children had the opportunity to revisit the same still life this time with less attention to detail. The children pressed white paper on top of their painting to create a one of a kind, one time print.

Still Life

We looked at some famous still life paintings. We asked the children what they thought "still life" meant. They answered " not moving", "like a statue". An ongoing question over the summer has been "why do people draw or paint?" We talked about one reason while doing this activity- before there were cameras people drew to remember what something looked like. This painting experience also gave the children a new opportunity to explore lines and shapes.  It was interesting to observe the different details each child chose to focus on. Things like lines on the vase, the direction  an apple was sitting or that you could see the sticks through the glass vase.

Circle Mural

We painted a beautiful mural. For some of our younger friends we thought it would be great practise to paint circles, little circles, medium circles and big circles. We used bright, vibrant colors. Our older friends had the opportunity to paint around, inside and in between the circles, filling in all the space. This activity was another way to give them practise holding a small paint brush and using their fine motor skills, 

It took a bit of time and help from all our friends but we eventually got it all filled in.

Our Big Beautiful Color Wheel

For a culminating project, we decided to make a color wheel. It was a great opportunity for review.  The children painted all the colors, ripped them all into pieces and glued them into the right spots.

Everyone worked together to create this beautiful, colorful work of art.