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All About Me Foldable Squash Books

One of the first projects my 4th/5th grade students created this year were personal “About Me” folded squash books.  The kids were introduced to a simple foldable bookmaking technique and then they personalized them with drawings and collages about themselves.  Each section of the book had a prompt to get them started. I showed them a video demonstration of how to assemble the book and I provided square templates printed on card stock.  Both the video, templates and instructions are … Read more…

My Book of Beautiful Oops! Giveaway and Book Review

Hi!  I’m working with Workman Publishing to share a new book and giveaway with you! Many art teachers use the book Beautiful Oops! in their classroom.   It’s one of my favorites!  It’s all about how even if you make a mistake, it’s an opportunity to turn it into something beautiful.  This link has some art projects I’ve taught using this book. BUT… there is a brand new companion to Beautiful Oops!  This a creative personal journal for young artists aged … Read more…

Designer Tree Houses

Hi!  One day when I was sick I left a sub lesson plan for my students to design their own tree houses.  I printed out examples of tree house drawings for inspiration, like these here and here.  There is also this resource by Art Sub Lessons which has many pictures of real tree houses for inspiration. I did not leave a lot of directions or specific requirements, but encouraged creative thinking and unusual designs. Here are some of our whimsical pictures.  I think … Read more…

A World of Your Own: Creativity Drawings

I have a fun creativity drawing project and excellent children’s book to share with you today. I came across this book called A World of Your Own by Laura Carlin and thought it looked intriguing, so I ordered it. I love the illustrations in the book and the story encourages children to think of how they would imagine a world of their own. On a day when I was out sick, I left this book for the substitute teacher to … Read more…

Beautiful Oops Painting Project

Did you Celebrate Oops!?  My kindergarten and first graders started this open-ended project by reading the book Beautiful Oops! by Barney Saltzberg. We were inspired by the page in the book that said, “A smudge and a smear can make magic appear.” Each student received a piece of paper with a smear of paint on it.  They were challenged to turn that piece of paper into a “beautiful oops” and create a wonderful work of art incorporating the smear. What … Read more…

On Teaching Art: Things to Think About

Welcome to the 4th post in my series On Teaching Art. The first post and the background behind this series is On Teaching Art:  Art vs. Craft. The second post was On Teaching Art #2: Organizing Curriculum. The third post was On Teaching Art #3: Integrating Art with Other Subjects. The question posed for this blog post is: “What are the important principles for teaching art that my students should remember? For instance, I can imagine that it’s important for them … Read more…

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