Students and families have been asking me for a couple of years to bring back after school art. This year with permission of and encouragement from our new principal as well as our PTA and Foundation, I agreed. It has been really fun to allow the students to spend time in the art room and use my personal materials such as watercolor pencils, pencils in different hardnesses, textiles, beads, and even my treasured gelato oil pastels to create fun art pieces.
The class is very loosely structured. I give them project ideas, teach them how to use the tools and elements of art and off they go. It is not necessarily a step by step drawing or painting type of class but we have done a bit of that. The students choose what they want to learn about and we create things they are interested in.
We made beaded bracelets and kumihimo weaving.
One boy wanted to know how to draw things more realistically so I taught him the basics of gridding as well as creating and using a viewfinder.
We created marionette puppets similar to the one I made at the Basil Twist workshop I attended last fall. They also made stick puppets.
We made CD spinners and talked about color and pattern and what would happen when the patterns and colors spun together.
We made LED Origami balloons and talked about positive and negative connections as well as how folding and following directions in origami can be hard sometimes.
We talked about shadow and highlight and they create a picture of oranges. We also talked about and created gesture drawings of people.
They made their own sketchbooks
They created sculptures using chenille stems, cardboard, buttons, feathers, and washi tape.
Most recently, students looked at Katsushika Hokusai’s The Great Wave off Kanagawa. We talked about how it was made, what it represented, how the artist used color and how could we deconstruct it to reconstruct it using the art tools of our own choice.
The last 6 weeks have been a lot of fun having an open art forum and allowing students to play with art materials and be creative while learning. My favorite part is how my students are able to look at something, discuss it, figure out how it was made and then they create their own version.