Tag Archives: collage

Newspaper Animal Portraits

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As the school year winds down, supplies seem to be at a premium. I do my best to be very budget conscious since my program is funded entirely through the generosity of parents and our foundation. Because of this, I tend to slide in to the last few weeks of art with just enough paper, paint and glue to get us through to the end of the year.

This is one of those lessons that is easy to do on a budget with a few donated newspapers and some scraps of construction paper. I usually have a good sized bin of paper scraps by the end of the year and I have a stack of newspaper from a few years ago so that made this project even easier. I first showed students some examples I had made and then I demoed how to cut different animal heads, ears, snouts, and bodies for the students and they chose what animal they wanted to create and how they wanted to create it.

If you do an online search for newsprint animals you will likely have even more examples of this lesson to choose from. These were our version and we completed them in one 45 minute session.

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Kindergarten Collage Flowers

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One of my favorite things to do is show my youngest students the magic of a square. Cut it in half and you get two rectangles. But if you cut it in half diagonally, you get two triangles.

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When you cut the tip off the triangle, you get a trapezoid. If you cut all the corners off and round the edges, its a circle. It is always fun to teach these youngest artists how to manipulate shapes to make objects.

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The students were given a few different sized squares as well as pre-cut circles, long skinny green rectangles and I brought in my bucket of paper scraps.

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I modeled how to cut the square and how to make different shaped flowers. You can see that I modeled the pinwheel type flower and the tulip like flower. I encouraged them to decorate the vases and create more flowers if they wanted to.

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I really think this one is fun:

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This student did their own flowers in their own way! I just wish I had time to talk with each and every one of them hear their thought process. We spent 30 minutes on this lesson from start to finish including clean up. Whew!

Martina Nehrling

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For as long as I have been teaching art, I have been going to art shows, gallery openings, and museums as well as taking classes.  I think that if I want my students to be life long learners, I need to be one myself.

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I love to look at gallery sites and find things that might inspire me or my students to create something fun. That is how I found this artist.

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I came across an article about Martina Nehberg on the Markel Fine Arts blog.  Her art is colorful and fun and my students loved seeing her work and the pictures of her studio especially when it included her dogs.

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We used scraps from our box of colorful paper strips. It was a great lesson for my 1-2 combo class to practice cutting and gluing skills while creating amazing works of art.

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Ponds

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I have a wonderful opportunity to teach weekly art to a group of students. These ponds were done at the request of a teacher to go with their grade levels pond unit.

These students get art with me for about 30 minutes each week. I started by telling the kindergartners about Monet and his water lily paintings. They created theirs using oil pastel and water soluble markers which they painted with water.

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The next week, we made the green backgrounds. We talked about texture. I gave them green, yellow, and blue paint, forks, and my infamous paint daubers (sponges clipped to a clothespin).

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The week after that, they cut the ponds into a “pond shape” and glued them on the background and added cattails and dragonflies.

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The last week, we added butterflies and frogs. I think they came out just stunning and will be great for their open house celebration.

Year of the Dog Grade 4

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I love the animals of Chinese New Year and I always try to come up with something fun.

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For 4th graders, I had them cut circles from white construction paper, and silhouettes of dogs from black construction paper.

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They added patterns to the circles and put their  dog silhouette on top. I found silhouettes of dogs online that they could refer to.

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Kumeyaay Ollas

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The third grade learns about the history of our community. Part of that history includes the Native American tribes that lived here before anyone else.

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They often take a field trip to the Kumeyaay Interpretive center and see a replica of an Ewaa, grind acorns, paint rocks and learn about the tools, food, lifestyle and culture of these people.

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To complement the study of the Kumeyaay, students created these paper pots. We looked at images of Kumeyaay pottery, learned how it was made and then cut out our ollas from paper. I do not have a kiln, so we cannot easily do clay lessons.

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We also looked at images of petroglyphs and petrographs from our county. We learned that most of the Kumeyaay pottery was not decorated but did have fire clouds from the Raku firing process they used. We also learned that Kumeyaay pottery is still being made today.

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I allowed the students to use images from pictographs and petroglyphs to add more color to their pottery if they chose to. They glued their finished pots onto simple backgrounds when complete.

Collaged Cupcakes

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I met the other elementary art teacher from our district at the San Diego Museum of Art. Four of her students had this cupcake lesson chosen for the Young Art 2017: Beyond the Ordinary Exhibition. She mounted them on colored paper squares and grouped them together.

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I think her students were grade three, I did this with my First Graders.

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I thought it was a great way to use up some of the magazine donations and scrap paper we have accumulated.

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I had my students color the background with oil pastel. I don’t typically use colored paper because it is difficult to estimate how much I need from year to year.

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Collage Bees

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The kindergarten students study insects and they often have a beekeeper come and share what it is like to be a beekeeper and how we get honey. 55282272

He brings in the clothes, tools, pictures, empty hives, and honey. It really is fun for the students.

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I did a project last year on black paper. This year, we did it on white.

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They had a lot of fun collaging their bees and creating a background. As always, we did this in 30 minutes!

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I think they are just so cute and have loads of personality.

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Sail Boat Collage

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My K/1 Combo class did this lesson. They painted the background first doing the sky white then adding blue, they then painted the ocean with blue, green, and white. We did not rinse between colors so that was one less clean up step. I had them wipe their brushes on scrap paper or their placemats.

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While that was drying, I showed them our “magic square” trick. A square can be cut into 2 triangles or 2 rectangles.

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They then made boats with the squares of painted paper. I often use my old demo lessons chopped up for things like this. I also have some art room helpers who will take the paint leftovers from a paint day and paint on “oops” papers.

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That paper is made by my upper grade student helpers. While I am pretty conservative in pouring paint, there is always a bit of leftover paint on the supply plates and it is a good way to use that up. (Reduce, reuse recycle: it’s good for the budget)

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They then cut and assembled the boats however they wanted to.

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Collage Birds

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Years ago I saw some collaged cardboard birds. After my best friend died, her kids and mine did a grief group each week with activities from the Dougy Center. This activity wasn’t from there but I loved the idea of 3D birds and the kids and I liked doing art together. We made the “word birds” below.

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For that project, we put a word about what we needed on one side and what we loved about ourselves on the other. My thought was they could put the bird in their room in a place people could see it like on their dresser or desk and when they needed some extra TLC, they put that side out facing the world. When they were doing okay, the side of what they liked about themselves showed.

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This year after getting a giant box of cardboard packing triangles, oodles of paper strips and having loads of scrap paper, I had my students do these birds.

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They are really colorful. For the feathers, we used edger scissors  that cut interesting patterns as you cut. Kids LOVE using those scissors and I have a lot of them as they were given to my own kids over the years.

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If the students wanted to, they could add words when they were finished but many did not.

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I had them fold card stock in half, draw a bird shape, collage both sides and glue them together.I did this in a step by step fashion after the first group struggled a bit.

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I learned with the first group that several of them collaged the same side and then the bird would not go together. So for the next group, I had them cut out the birds, have them lay them flat then have them “kiss” or touch tails and draw an “X” on each side that was facing up.

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This helped prevent them from collaging the wrong side. I showed them how to glue the beaks and tail feathers on one side so that it would sandwich between when the project was complete. Most of them understood that part, some did not.

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They were instructed to decorated all sides of the triangle and leave the bottom of the bird open. They brought them to me and I stapled the triangle feet for them.

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