Monthly Archives: May 2016

Hotch Potch Alphabet

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hotch-potchGrade 5 learns about the Colonies and Revolution.

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The Hotch Potch Alphabet was created in the 18th century to teach children letters.

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Our fifth graders gave their own creative spin to this and added some fun rhymes.

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Ema or Shinto Plaques

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The Mingei Museum in Balboa Park recently opened an exhibition featuring Japanese arts and crafts. On one wall was this beautiful collection of Emas or Shinto Prayer Plaques.

MINGEI OF JAPAN: TREASURES NEW AND OLD FROM THE MUSEUM’S COLLECTION: APRIL 2, 2016 – OCTOBER 2, 2016

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I shared my photos from this exhibition with my students. We talked about the idea of folk arts and why people might create plaques like this asking for prayers. The students and I talked about how we could take this idea of Emas and create our own wishing plaques.

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They wished for the most amazing things from world peace, to saving water, to healing family members. They created their own frames and then did the illustrations. They put their wishes on the back. We used donated brown paper, oil pastels, and some chose to add tempera paint.

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Terrific Transportation

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A few weeks ago some friends returned from Thailand and we talked about the Tuk-Tuk and how other countries have some really unique modes of public transportation. I presented images of jeepneys, tuk-tuks, autos, and rickshaws to the first graders.

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I asked them, “What kind of terrific transportation would you have?”

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These are just a few vehicles that they came up with.

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Illustrating a Paint Title

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46563979.jpgAfter we painted my daughter’s room “marsh fern”, she and I talked about how it looked like many colors but not what one would think of as a marsh or a fern. It was a super bright green that was reminiscent of a granny smith apple.

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We talked about how one might illustrate the names of paint colors. That is where the inspiration for this lesson came from.

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Today, I took that idea to my third graders. I gave them titles of paints that I found at our local hardware store and brought in swatches. Their job was to create their own paint color and title.

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Such a fun lesson. The kids were amazingly creative: Gloomy Grave, Magnificent Maui,  Jurassic Jungle, just to name a few.

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Geological Abstractions

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We needed a no mess project for Grade 5 because we were moved into a different classroom for SBAC testing.

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I came up with this lesson based on the art of Carol Nelson and Liana Bennet. They created images of rocks that are just super cool. Carol Nelson calls them geological abstractions.46558199

We also looked at geology book illustrations from the 1930’s.

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I gave each student a rock or slice of rock or a broken bit of rock tile so that they could make observations.

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They then could interpret this lesson however they chose to using the colors they wanted and zooming in or out of the image as they saw best. they used oil pastel.