Friday, March 21, 2008


Oh WOW!!!!! Are we ever going to be having some fun now. I just received a $2000 grant through Best Buy and have bought 10 new digital cameras, and 5 photo printers (plus a few other odds and ins like memory cards, rechargeable batteries, and ink kits) to start basic photography lessons with my students. Now, we all know that they can teach me more about using the cameras than I could EVER teach them, so my lessons are going to be focused more on the framing techniques and developing an "artistic" eye, as opposed to the point and shoot method. I am really excited about this opportunity and can't wait to get started. Begin looking for our first attempts to soon grace the walls of Chets Creek!

In my grant, I did mentions that the cameras could be used with other projects in the school, such as creating photographs demonstrating ideas in academic areas, such as patterns, habitats, proportions, textures (math/science). In social studies they could be used to record different social events or activities. In Language Arts, they could be used to illustrate. Really, the possibilities are endless. Let me know some of the ideas that might be forming that these cameras could help come to pass. I am sure there are going to be some wonderful, expressive ideas flowing from our kids as this project gets off the ground!

Thanks to Best Buy for making these grants possible. If you haven't, you really should check out this opportunity.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Mixed media collages are coming along.

We have really been moving in the lab, just hoping we can get all these projects finished in time for Cultural Arts Week. We are finishing clay, collage, painting, printmaking, radial designs, drawings, and just about everything else you can think of.

One project which really seems to be going nicely is our mixed media collages with a 4th grade class. I actually borrowed the idea from another art teacher and modifyed it, slightly, for this class. As the plexiglass picture frames began to break really badly, I saved the "box" or bottom cardboard part. After saving up about 40, I had a class use them to create these mixed media collages. First we glued colored poster board on top and began drawing a large, simple still life. We painted in the background areas, adding patterns and texture. We then began using Mod Podge to brush tissue paper onto the drawn table top. Student filled in objects on the table with foil, construction paper, packing peanuts, or whatever media they desired - giving us a lot of textures to play with. The final steps will include using oil pastels to outline, detail, and texturize and then gluing on actual silk flowers and leaves coming out of our vases. Because these are done on the cardboard box of the box frames, they are already prepared to hang on the wall! This is just one more way to recycle some of those old items hanging around the art lab.