Monday, October 26, 2015

Drawing Autumn Leaves

1st grade students continued their exploration of line and shape last week by going outside and collecting leaves to draw! We gathered different leaves that had fallen on the ground outside and brought them in to draw.

Students learned about drawing from observation, which means drawing from something you can see. This is different than making something from your imagination. Students looked carefully at their leaf as they drew, pretending that their hand and their eye were connected together. Starting at one point, they worked their way around the outside edge, or contour, of the leaf and tried not to pick up their marker as they drew what they saw.
Although it was challenging, students learned a lot about the lines and shapes they saw! They noticed straight lines, zig zag edges, and curves. Once students drew the outside shape of the leaf, they added the lines they saw on the inside, as well as other details like holes. 
Students did a great job focusing on what they saw in front of them, and challenging themselves to draw each leaf exactly as they saw it. 
Here are some examples of our leaf observation drawings below!
Lineysha, 1st grade (Massa)
Shane D., 1st grade (Mandile)
Ana, 1st grade (Massa)
Lily, 1st grade (Massa)
Kemi, 1st grade (Mandile)
Nico, 1st grade (Mandile)

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Printed Robots

1st grade students recently created printed robots, using cardboard and recycled materials to print or stamp paint on paper. Many students connected this to the cityscape prints they made as Kindergarten students!

To print, we dipped the cardboard into the paint, then pressed it down on the paper and lifted it up to make a mark. We connected out lines together to make shapes to form our robot's body. 
We thought carefully about what different parts we wanted to add to our robot. Students also focused on using the whole paper and make their robot nice and big!
After our robots dried, the following week students used oil pastel to add color to their robot. We focused on the robot's body and experimented with layering and blending oil pastel colors together. 
We also talked about what our robots could do. Some of the robots help with homework, make food when you are hungry, protect people, dance, and help find things that are lost! We shared our colorful robots at the end of class. Here are some of our robots and their special jobs, below. 
Dylon, "My robot helps people who are lost" 
Callan, "My robot helps the police" 

Jasmine,"My robot helps people"
Evelyn, "My robot does ballet"

Friday, October 16, 2015

Mandalas from India

This year, 2nd grade students are learning about Arts Around the World in their art and music classes. The first country 2nd grade artists traveled to this year is India! We learned that India is located in South Asia, and has the second largest population in the world. We learned that there are many different languages spoken in India and because of it's location, India has periods of heavy rain called monsoon.
We looked at an art form called the mandala, which began in India as a symbol from Buddhism. The word mandala is from the Indian language of Sanskrit and means "circle." We looked at an example of a mandala and students noticed that it had a repeating pattern in its design. 
We looked at different mandalas and pictures of people creating mandalas on the ground, using what looked like chalk. We noticed that they start in the middle and work their way outwards. We thought about what happens to drawings that we make on the sidewalk or asphalt when we use chalk and talked about how they wash away eventually, which might also happen to these mandalas.
We then watched a time elapse video that showed Buddhist monks creating a sand mandala over a period of a week. It took them many hours and their design was very complex and detailed. Afterwards, they destroyed the mandala, brushing the grains of sand into the middle. This surprised many students! We talked about why they might do this, and connected it to when we have drawn on the sidewalk with chalk. Even though the result is not permanent, it is still a fun and worthwhile experience to create something together. 

To explore this idea, students worked in groups at their table (we discussed how the monks working together as a team made their mandala making quicker) to create a mandala using colorful foam shapes.  
Students shared ideas and also compromised to be able to form a group mandala, keeping symmetry and the circular form in mind. At the end of class, student had a chance to see each other's mandalas before (calmly) destroying them and putting all the shapes back into the plastic bag.
The following class, students began designing their own mandala drawings using a theme that expressed their interests and personalities. Some examples of themes that students chose were favorite shapes, sports, games, gardens, and video game characters. 
Using rulers to help find the center point, students drew their mandala starting from the middle and going outwards. They outlined them in Sharpie marker and colored them in, thinking about how to create patterns using color. Students worked hard to make their colors bright and cover the white paper.

Once they were finished, students cut out the circle and glued it onto a background, considering what kinds of colors would complement their mandala design. We also wrote about what we learned in our Passport and received our first stamp! Here are some examples:   
Raffi, 2nd grade (O'Connor)
Prarthna, 2nd Grade (O'Connor)
Evan, 2nd grade (O'Leary)
Sam, 2nd grade (Pearse)
Yensi, 2nd grade (O'Connor)
Connor, 2nd grade (O'Connor)

Thursday, October 15, 2015


To start off the year, 3rd grade artists looked at and discussed the work of Roy Lichtenstein and learned about his use of onomatopoeia, which is when a word imitates the sound of the object or action it refers to. Some examples are words like: "wham," "drip," and "ka-pow!"  

We noticed that Lichtenstein was inspired by comics since the use of onomatopoeia is more common in comics and cartoons. We also noticed that he used primary colors in these paintings.  
Roy Lichtenstein, Whaam! (1963)
We began our own artwork by brainstorming a list of onomatopoeia words as a class. Each student selected 4 different words and drew sketches that demonstrated the word's action and meaning as a visual picture, combining letters and pictures:
Next class, we looked at more of Lichtenstein's paintings and noticed that he used dots of color, called benday dots, which were inspired by the way comic books were printed at the time.  
We selected one brainstorm sketch to make into a larger drawing and used markers in primary colors, incorporating the benday dots in at least one area of our artwork. These are some examples of our finished onomatopoeia drawings:
Jaylyn, 3rd grade (Monfette)
Peter, 3rd Grade (Cole)
Cammy, 3rd grade (Cole)
Tristan, 3rd grade (Lutz)
Nola, 3rd grade (Lutz)
Pirada, 3rd grade (Cole)

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Pop Art Prints, Part 1

4th grade artists started off the year by learning about the Pop Art movement, which began in the 1950's. Artists focused on objects and scenes from everyday life and popular culture, borrowing techniques from commercial art and popular illustration, like comics and cartoons.

We looked at a few examples of screen prints made by Andy Warhol, who made multiple prints of his artwork. A lot of his art featured commercial products that were mass produced, so he chose to mass produce his artwork, as well.
Andy Warhol, Campbell's Soup Cans (1962)
After sharing our observations, we discussed what popular culture means to us today. Each class made a list on the whiteboard, which included things like sports teams, music, video games, social media and fashion. Then students brainstormed at least four ideas for a print, featuring pop culture imagery that is important or meaningful to them. Students were also given reference images for inspiration, with sports teams logos, emojis and cartoon characters, among other things.
Each student selected one of their four ideas to make into a print that would be repeated multiple times. After placing their chosen drawing on top of a piece of styrofoam, students traced over their drawing with a wooden stylus. 

Then they removed the paper and went over their drawing again, to make the lines deeper. Below are some examples of the finished printing plates. 
Next class, we will be printing with our Pop Art plates, so stay tuned!

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

The Hosmer Learning Garden Sign is Up!

The sign that our 5th graders from Ms. Domermuth's class last year made for the garden is now up on the gate! 

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Collaborative Line & Color Paintings

1st grade artists started the year by reviewing our different kinds of lines with the book Lines That Wiggle. 
Working collaboratively as a group at each table, students painted a variety of different lines on a large paper. We thought about how they might overlap and connect. For the second day of art class this school year, students remembered a lot about lines, as well as our painting clean up procedures!
Next class, students received their collaborative line paintings back. We noticed how the lines interacted with each other to create shapes and spaces. We painted these areas with tempera paint, remembering to wash out our brush between colors and make sure to get enough paint in our brush.
Students moved around their table to reach all the areas of their large line painting, and worked together to decide when it was done and ready for the drying rack. 
Some classes did a gallery walk of the finished artworks, while others took a look after some were displayed in the glass case in the lobby area. Check out some of our collaborative line paintings on display!
Etta, Marius, Anastasia and Nico's painting, 1st Grade (Mandile)

Friday, October 2, 2015

Line Challenge Resist Paintings

PK and Kindergarten artists started off the year by exploring line! Lines are a traveling mark, created when a dot goes for a walk. They help define the edges of shapes and space, and we can see them all around us!

We learned about the names of different lines, including straight, wavy, zig zag, curly, dotted and spiral. We also created some of our own, including a "shape line," "column line" and "castle line"! Using oil pastels, students drew a variety of different lines in their "line challenge" drawings, making them go all the way across their paper. They drew lines that we had learned about, and invented new lines from their imagination.

Next class, we explored what happens when we add paint on top of our oil pastel lines. We thought about what might happen and some students predicted that our lines might disappear, be covered by the paint, or change color, while others thought the lines might still show. We watched a demonstration of paint on top of oil pastel and noticed that we could still see the oil pastel lines through the paint! We learned that this is because the oil pastel and paint resist each other, or move away from each other, instead of mixing together. 
Students painted on top of their oil pastel lines, working on washing out their brush between colors and trying to cover the entire paper with paint. It was fun to see resist in action, and watch our lines magically show through the paint! 
Below are examples of our artwork, some of which are on display on the bulletin board in the connector hallway!
Griffin, Kindergarten (Bolton)
Isabella, Kindergarten (Tan)
Logan, Kindergarten (Martignetti)
Willow, Kindergarten (Tan)
We will continue our exploration of line this term, so stay tuned for more!