Tag Archives: painting

Sail Boat Collage



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.


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


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.


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)


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


Technology Goddesses


This is my 8th year volunteering with Technology Goddesses Day Camp . I have done many different volunteer positions at camp over the years. About 3 summers ago, I started helping with crafts and have been there ever since.

This year the volunteer who is the craft director was not able to be at camp until the last day so I stepped in to help lead. We usually do basic camp type crafts in the theme of the day-motion, color, getting to know you, etc. This year we added circuits and magnetic throwies to the mix. It was really a lot of fun.


Kumihimo weaving disks. Some of the older girls used conductive yarn and added it to circuit projects.


Learning about circuits day 2. Day one, they made battery holders and tested those on samples. On day 2, they created different paths using copper tape and these templates.


Senior Crowns-we have a little tradition that I started a few years ago of crowning the graduating seniors. This year, the decorators went all out with washi tape, stickers, and illustrations.



Pom pom launchers-cut pool noodles, balloons, and pom poms so much fun!

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Painting with Spheros-round robots controlled by apps created on a phone or tablet.


This was a great little mosaic craft created by a camper earning her Girl Scout Silver Award. Her camp name is Mermaid so we called it Mermaid’s Magical Mosaic. She is an amazing young woman who learned all about Niki de St. Phalle, Niki’s mosaics, and Queen Calafia’s Garden. Her project was to teach others art appreciation, bring awareness to preserving public art, and to teach children about Niki’s work. She did an absolutely fantastic job and the campers LOVED this project.It would be cool to do in my own classroom.


Shrink plastic SWAPS

Well, that’s all for this year’s Technology Goddesses  crafts. As we said at roll call on the last day of camp, “We’ll be buffering until 2017”.

Cherry Blossoms


In San Diego, we have a beautiful Japanese Friendship Garden. In the spring it is full of cherry blossoms. This lesson was created for my K-1 Combo classes but I have done it with other grades.

The students learned about the cherry blossom festival and the cherry trees in Washington D.C. and our own in Balboa Park. We looked at pictures of cherry blossoms and our local Japanese garden for inspiration.

Students painted a brown branch on blue paper. They dipped their fingers in pink and red paint to make small dots for the blossoms.

Circle Painting



I took a great one day workshop in Mission Viejo for teachers called Circle Painting. It was a lot of fun to learn and create with other educators.


Thick Paper plates. Painted a solid color and then the magic happens. We each painted a little something on the plates then chose 2 to take home.


Great idea using cardboard cup holders for the paint cups. Hiep talks about paint cups being in the tray or in your hand at all times to prevent spills.


Brushes of all shapes and sizes!


Painting is messy!


“Joyful” sideways




Father’s Day Portraits



I recently was a substitute in a friend’s combo class and she asked me to do something for Father’s Day with her students. One of the preschool teachers at my school does Mother’s Day portraits with her students every year and they are adorable. For this group of very capable second and third graders, I chose to have them paint a portrait of their father and write a cinquain poem.

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Because I had an entire day to work with the students, we started by drawing a light pencil sketch of the head, neck and shoulder and painting the skin color in the morning. By afternoon, we had completed our daily work, the paint was dry and students were able to add all of the details.

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I did demo how to make different kinds of eyes, noses, ears and hair. My hope was that the hair would look a little more realistic than just painting a strip of color across the top of the head. I think they all did a great job of making them their own.

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I hope the dads are pleased with their portraits. I know the students had a great time painting them. Wouldn’t it be fun to have a picture of the dads next to their portraits?


Apple Still Life


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This is a great lesson that involves printmaking, shadows and watercolor painting.

Students used bottle lids and tempera paint to create prints that resemble apples. We used yellow, green and red paint.

After the prints were dry, they drew a circle around some of the apples to create a bowl. They added shadows and stems with oil pastel. They then added watercolor for the table, bowl and background.

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