Third grade artists completed a unit using recyclable cardboard (mostly cereal and cracker boxes), constructing cardboard owls and fish. Then, they were painted with acrylic paint, and we made looms with them! Being able to do a little bit of free form weaving builds dexterity and refines small motor skills. Currently, students are designing “two environments” with two animals in each, which will be turned into watercolor paintings. So far, the sketches have turned out great, and students are very excited to be using real watercolor paper for the project.
Fourth grade students completed their clay tiles, based on the theme of “Community”. These are going to be part of a school installation, a tile mural (hopefully put together as soon as summer break begins). There is a lot of behind-the-scenes work needed to pull this together, including getting the materials needed for installing tile, thanks to a grant I wrote from the Aurora Schools Foundation. We are hoping to get some parent volunteers to help out on this very exciting project! Next up, fourth graders are working on their second cartoon unit, designing themselves as a regular cartoon and also as a creative character. We are starting the watercolor portion of this project by gradually building up values, from light to dark, which takes patience and practice! There are wonderful watercolor tips here.
Fifth grade students finished a unit integrating Common Core Language Arts Standards, designing and analyzing graphic novels. All the students worked in teams of three or more, and drew the same story, “Pandora’s Box” (a Greek myth), but utilizing different tones. So some have “futuristic” aspects like Pandora going through a wormhole, others have “fantastical” elements (think Zeus as a wizard), and even “funny” ones featuring Pandora as a panda! We started the process with storyboards, then moved to layout designing, and then the cartooning began. Moving into March, fifth grade artists are so excited to be working with clay! They are using either slab or pinch pot construction methods to make either a “big mouth creature”, “garden gnome”, or a vase.
The year is really flying by! In other news, artwork was shown at the annual Aurora Fish Fry, and coming up in a little over a month, the huge District Art Show, up at Aurora High School during the spring musical. Selected student pieces are also being displayed at local business, “The Latest Scoop”.