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Mixed Media Collages by Kids – Inspired by Sabrina Ward Harrison

IMG_2552 2

In my last post, I showed you some of Sabrina Ward Harrison’s artwork and talked about what she shared with us at her artist visit.  Her artwork is very inspiring, messy and beautiful.  Please check out the other post to learn all about this artist.   After the presentation, smaller groups of kids in grades 3-6 had a collage workshop with Sabrina.  She demonstrated how to use Mod-Podge to paste down pieces of her pinwheel shape. While she demonstrated the … Read more…

Mixed Media Artist: Sabrina Ward Harrison

sabrina art wheel shape

We recently had artist Sabrina Ward Harrison visit our school to give an artist talk and workshop with the kids.  Today I am going to introduce you to her artwork and life as an artist.  In Part Two of this post, I will share with you some of the amazingly diverse mixed media collages that the students made in response to learning about her artwork.  All of the artwork on this page was made by Sabrina. Her message to the … Read more…

Clay Masks with 3rd Grade

Clay Masks

  To make these charming clay animal masks, we used plastic face molds (with a layer of plastic wrap in between) as a slump mold for the clay.  Another option was to use the back side of a styrofoam bowl to shape the mask.  The children added and secured the parts of the face.  After firing, they were painted with clay glazes.

Tree of Life and Talking Sticks

I forgot to share these pictures of our display when I wrote the blog post about Talking Sticks.  My co-worker Jayne taught the lesson behind these talking sticks which were Tree of Life acrylic paintings on canvas boards.  They were done by middle school kids.  Aren’t they gorgeous?

Stitching on Burlap: A Painting & Sewing Experience for Children


One type of art skill that I haven’t been the best at consistently teaching in my classroom is sewing.  I was reminded of how you can sew on burlap after seeing some painted and stitched leaves at my daughter’s school.  My third/fourth grade classes were often asking me if they could sew and I already had a lot of yarn and a roll of burlap at school. I wanted to share this idea with you quickly without a whole lot of … Read more…

Animal Cloth Paintings inspired by Korhogo Cloths


My 3rd grade classes learned about African Korhogo Cloth paintings. They had been studying Africa in their Social Studies class.  Here are some of the resources we used:  information about the cloth paintings and a couple of YouTube videos– Take a Look at African Korhogo Cloth and Senufo Art (although I do caution you that there is some tribal nudity at the beginning of this documentary in the intro, so start it after 20 seconds in).  There is a really cool tribal dance portion … Read more…

Color Theory and Rhythm Drawings by 3rd Grade

Color Theory Rhythm Drawings

This is a project I love to do with the 3rd graders.  Their drawing all turn out so unique and fun.  First, we talk about what rhythm in art is.  Rhythm is like a visual beat in a picture, created by lines, colors, shapes and space.  Rhythm can be made by repeating certain elements of art.  Here is a good handout about rhythm. Here is another handout about rhythmic line designs.   The students each drew their own line drawing showing … Read more…

All About Me Collaborative Puzzle Pieces


You are part of the puzzle!  Each student in my older grades (3-5) made a puzzle piece about themselves and their interests.  I should have written:  You are a PIECE of the puzzle.  Or, I could have said: We all fit together.  I know, it’s kind of corny, but the puzzle piece making was fun. I bought a set of wooden puzzle pieces (the package came with two pieces) and I traced them onto several pieces of tagboard to make … Read more…

Article in Arts & Activities Magazine


I’m pretty excited my article in the October issue of Arts & Activities is on the cover! I wrote about an art project my students did after learning about the artist William Wegman. I had the awesome opportunity to interview Wegman on the phone and include the interview as a large part of the article. I’m very glad that they included a bunch of my students’ artwork (3rd grade). You can read the whole article here: http://pubdev.ipaperus.com/ArtsandActivities/AAOctober2016/?page=20 If you would … Read more…

Patterned Tape and Wood Scrap Sculptures

Patterned Tape and Wood Block Sculptures (9)

What can you make with patterned tape and wood scraps? This is an open-ended project that is sure to delight your kids.  For some reason, colorful patterned tape is very appealing to kids (and many adults.)   Materials used: Mat Boards (donated from a frame shop) Scrap wood (donated and picked up from an art supply swap) Colored and patterned Tape The students selected pieces of wood and then wrapped the blocks in colorful tape.  These pieces were taped or … Read more…

Chicks at School

Chick Art Project

We have some chicks at school.  Chicks, like baby chickens. One of the science teachers taught the kids about the life cycle of chickens and the kids watched as the eggs were incubated and hatched. They grow so quickly! With all the excitement of the hatching chicks, the students were thrilled to create some chick artwork.  Here is a mural/bulletin board that students in grades 2-3 worked together on. Next, we did a step-by-step project in kindergarten to make a … Read more…

God’s Eyes Woven Wall Hanging

My 3rd and 4th grade class just finished making woven God’s Eyes (Ojos de Dios).  Students chose yarn and wrapped the strands around the sticks.  Then they were all tied to a large stick I found in my neighbor’s yard.  Some kids made multiples so they could take one home right away. I was surprised how almost all of them had never made these before.  I guess I went to a lot of summer camps where we made stuff with … Read more…

What Do Artists Do? Signs about ARTISTS and Artistic Behaviors

What do artists do?

I have something to share with you that I’ve been working on for a long time.  Well, a couple of months.  It takes forever for me to accomplish anything lately (I have a clingy toddler who doesn’t like to sleep) so I work in short spurts whenever I get a chance. Many of you probably know of Ian and Melissa from Apex High School.  They have developed a list of Artistic Behaviors for the high school level.  I have been … Read more…

Sand Painting with Kids


If you are looking for something to add a new dimension to regular painting, sand painting just might be the ticket!  The tactile experience is something exciting for children. I recently taught a unit on painting with sand to my third and fourth grade class.  You may remember my “how-to” blog post about this technique.  If you are wondering how we did our sand paintings, check out that post for all the details.  For a more advanced technique using adhesive … Read more…

How to Make Artist Trading Cards using Coffee Filters

Sprayed ARtist Trading Cards

My third grade students recently made these fun Artist Trading Cards (or ATCs for short.)  They are sized at 2 1/2″ x 3 1/2″ and they were made using a fun technique on coffee filters. To make these cards, you will need Artist Trading Card blanks Sharpie permanent markers Crayola markers Coffee filters Spray bottle with water Scissors and glue Steps: 1. Doodle lines and shapes on a coffee filter with Sharpie permanent markers. 2.  Color in the background spaces … Read more…

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