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Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Art To Remember Project on the Way HOME!!!!

We have completed the Art To Remember Artwork and have them all stuffed in the envelopes, ready to head home. Included on the envelope, should be instructions on how to fill out the order forms so that you can receive all those fabulous items with YOUR child's artwork on them.
This is really one of the greatest projects that we do because nothing is better than getting the artwork of a child, as it is fresh and honest. The following are answers to many questions you might have. If your answer is not there, my number appears on the sheet that is attached to your envelope. Give me a call.

What if my child did not finish their artwork? Well, that is not a problem. They are welcome to finish at home with whatever art medium you have available. Many were completed with crayon or markers, or a combination of both, so either of these would be fine.

What if my child did not do a piece of artwork? There were some students who were absent during several art classes or did not enter the school until after we were finished. They are welcome to do a piece of artwork. You can use a piece of copy paper but you must cut it down to 8' x 10 1/2". If you forget this step, I can cut it down when I get it. Make sure they put their first and last name, their teachers name, and Chets Creek, on the back. Have your child come to the Art Lab and get an extra envelope, which contains all the things you need to order.

What if my child does not like their artwork OR what if I would like them to draw something different? When we introduce this project to the students, we normally allow them (at least the older ones) to pick their own subject matter. We do stress the importance of choosing something that would be nice printed on one of these items. However, sometimes, the subject matter of the work is not necessarily something you would like to see on a coffee mug or a T-shirt. You are welcome to have your child draw another picture on a piece of copy paper (see above instructions) and send the new picture in the same envelope you received.

If I have another child that does not attend Chets Creek, can I have them do artwork and include it in the order? Absolutely! Again, just cut a piece of copy paper down to the size mentioned above and have them include their name on the back, their sibling's teachers name, and Chets Creek. You will have to get a seperate order form so that the company is not confused as to what artwork to print on what object. I should have extras in the Art Lab. You can put the artwork in the siblings envelope when your order is complete.

What do I need to return with my order? The order must have the original piece of artwork, the order form, and the payment.

How do I pay? A district change has stated that Duval Schools can no longer recieve checks for under $25 or over $250. So between those two amounts, you can write a check made out to Chets Creek Elementary. Under $25 must be cash.

Will I get my child's artwork back? Yes. If you make an order, the artwork will be returned with the items purchased.

When is my order due? Orders are due back to school by October 10th. Should you find that you did not get it turned in on time, please send it in anyway. If possible, I will make a late order. If I can't, then you can deal directly with ART TO REMEMBER and make arrangements.

When are we expecting the orders to arrive? This year, we are looking to receive them before the Thanksgiving break. If not then, then right after we return. They will be here in plenty of time for the holidays, especially, if your gifts are being sent out of town.

What if an item I have purchased comes damanged? Not a problem. Send the damanged piece in to the Art Lab. ATR keeps student artwork, digitally, until June. We can contact ATR and they will replace it and send it directly to you.

What if I want to order more items at a later date? Again, if you have put in a previous order, the artwork is stored digitally with ATR and they can simply pull it up and print it on whatever you like. You can work directly with ATR at that point.

What does the ATR fundraiser support? All funds raised by this project go to support the Cultural Arts at Chets Creek by bringing in quality presentations and performances for all our students. It also supports our annual Cultural Arts Week, which is a week long celebration of guest artists and family workshops that allow students and families to enjoy different aspects of the arts. The Arts Extravaganza evening event is also supported so that families can come enjoy and participate in the arts together. Finally, these funds help support the resources at Chets, allowing them to purchase special equipment and/or supplies for our students to enjoy.

Hopefully, your question has been answered. If not, you can leave a comment with a question and then check the blog for the answer in a day or two. OR you can call the number on the information sheet attached to your envelope. Let me THANK YOU for your support of and through this project. I KNOW you will be WOWed by these objects with your child's original art. It make the item that much more special.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Stretching the Brain!!!!!!

What a weekend!!!! I attended a workshop where we had to construct sculptural center pieces out of found objects that were to have a futuristic feel to them for the Florida Art Education Association Conference this year. We had no plan, no example, no nothin' to give us any hint as to what to do. I really got a taste of what my students feel when they are given a pile of "stuff", info, or whatever has been thrown at them, and ask them to make sinse of it by bringing it together into a connected whole. We were basically given a base and a tube and were set on our own to sift through tons of junk, making 100's of decisions about what the piece would look like, what "found objects" would best work to achieve the goal, colors, textures, patterns, and on and on and on. Sounds a little Daniel Pinkish doesn't it? Trying to find a connection between things that appear to have no connections?

This really tried and stretched my brain and left me quite fatiqued at the end of the day, as I had completed two different center piece sculptures. Though, I must say, it was pretty much fun. Many times, during the process, I had to change my plan and take a different route because iteas didn't work, engineering didn't work as planned, and, sometimes, because my outcome didn't match what I had invisioned. This is the way of the creative world. The end products were vastly different amoung the workshop "artists" yet they all hit the goal. Believe me, there were some strange looking center pieces but they were also perfect for the theme.

This really goes to prove how "performance based" art really is. Students, like myself, are constantly making decisions about their project to get it to that goal that they visualize in their minds. I don't usually leave them as stranded as I felt at the beginning of this exercize, but, they do have to use what they have learned and, in many instances, make connections and MANY, MANY decisions along the way to the end. This is where the real critical thinking skills come into play. When there is no set pattern presented nor a specific outcome stated, it leaves the students with their learned skills and their imagination to carry them along. It certainly helped me successfully build two "very interesting" pieces.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Learning A lot from Portraits

Our first graders are beginning their journey with Portraits this year, finding out what makes a portrait a portrait. We have talked about the fact that when we want to recognize someone, we look at their face, helping us to understand that portraits are meant for us to focus on the face. We want to know WHO they are. What else can working through portraiture teach us?? Well, we learn proportion as we look at sizes of the features of the face, we learn shape as we discuss BEST shapes for each feature, we learn parts of the face and how they function, we think about physical differences between people, such as eyes, hair, skin, etc. We also look at how the face is balanced in a symetrical fashion. During the application of color, we learn about shadow and light on the face and how to blend color to achieve specific results. We experiment with texture and pattern as we fill in hair and clothing. Portraits are just too much fun! What are the wonderful ways you can use portrait in your classroom?

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

things are moving along.....

Well, Art To Remember is coming to an end soon and we will be getting envelopes stuffed and sent home in October. Instructions will be given along with your class set of envelopes so you will understand how to handle this particular fundraiser.

It will be nice to start on some art plans that Miss Kristy and I have been discussing. We are really excited about some of the projects that will be coming your way soon. Remember to hold on the student artwork until Arts Extravaganz in April so you will have plenty for display during the week long art show. If you don't know about this April event, please ask me or your grade level leader.

While I am blogging, I would like to send out a request. I need to know some ways I can get the students working on the two computers in my room more oftern. I only have them from 40 - 50 minutes and I have 25 - 36 students. How do you handle this in your classrooms? I would really like to see the computers used more than they are. Let me know any suggestions you might have that I can adapt to the art program. All are appreciated!