May 6



Hello to all my Grade 4 students from Cambridge Primary School and whoever else might be reading this post.

avatar Shelley Menhennet

I can’t believe it is Week 5 of remote learning already!

We are going to be doing a bit of Visual Arts learning around the topic of CELESTIAL BODIES in ART!

So, in Week 3 you drew a rough draft of four different celestial bodies

Reyansh 4F cb

Vivienne 4A CB

And in Week 4 you drew 2 ideas for a celestial bodies artwork

Now, in Week 5, I would like you to create your final artwork for this unit of work. I want you to create a celestial bodies  artwork.

This artwork will require some thinking and some organising. So this artwork is due on Monday 24th May 2020!

In the past, my grade 3 students have created a celestial bodies artwork using clay like this.

This artwork involved-

  • deciding which of the celestial bodies you were going to create with

  • deciding how the celestial bodies were going to interact if the student was using more than one type of celestial body

  • deciding whether the celestial bodies claywork was going to be 3D and freestanding or flat

  • painting the claywork after it came out of the kiln

But you won’t be making a celestial bodies clay work in the art room.

In this time of remote learning we all have to adapt to creating at home.

How can you produce an artwork that has more than one celestial body in it? How can you put them together? Or perhaps you just want to create one of the celestial bodies? What will you use?

So you have lots of choice with how you create your celestial bodies artwork. However I want you to use more than one sort of material or one way of creating your art work.

So perhaps you will draw

or paint


or use oil pastels or chalk or watercolour pencils

or use lego

or make salt dough

Salt Dough Recipe


  • I cup salt
  • 2 cups plain flour
  • 1 cup hot water


  1. Add salt and plain flour to a bowl gradually adding hot water. You might not need all the water!
  2. Mix together until a dough forms. Make sure it isn’t sticky.
  3. Leave your salt dough creations to air dry overnight. Then put your salt dough creations in the oven at 120 degrees Celsius for about 3 hours.
  4. When your salt dough creations are cool you can paint them. If you don’t have gloss paint and you want them to look shiny you can paint them with varnish when the paint is dry. If you don’t have any varnish just paint them with PVA glue. This will also make them nice and shiny.

or use cut paper

or torn paper

or cardboard

or aluminum foil

use stuff from the kitchen drawers and cupboards

or stuff out of the laundry basket

or other stuff

or all of those things

or something I haven’t even listed!

This moon looks like it has been made using shaving cream!

If you want to look at more celestial bodies artworks go to my Pinterest board.

I am giving you lots and lots and lots of choice

in how you create your artwork but I am NOT telling you to go out and buy stuff! Use what is already in your home! Don’t forget to ask permission to pull stuff out of cupboards to use or to make salt dough, or things like that.Email your photos to me when you have finished.

And, of course, tidy up after you have created!!!

I cannot wait to see your artworks inspired by celestial bodies!

You can send it in earlier but remember this artwork is due on Monday 24th May 2020!

Have fun creating!

Mrs Menhennet


August 8


painted CD 6 2015

I had always wanted to do some sort of outdoor mural and Cambridge Primary School has so many boring blank walls that I had to come up with something.

coloured question marks

question marks

I decided on a CD tree after seeing these trees at inspirational Coburn PS in Melton, Victoria.  Mel and Kate, the incredible art teachers at Coburn PS, invited me over to their school (well, actually, I think I might have invited myself) to have a look at ALL their outdoor murals and they have done plenty of them!

painted CD tree at Coburn Primary School

painted CD tree at Coburn Primary School

They have mosaic murals,

mosaic mural Coburn PS 2014

mosaic mural Coburn PS 2014

clay tile murals,

clay tile mural Coburn Primary School 2014

clay tile mural Coburn Primary School 2014

painted bollards

painted bollards Coburn Primary School 2014

painted bollards Coburn Primary School 2014

and CD trees!

Painted CD tree 2 Coburn Primary School 2014

Painted CD tree 2 Coburn Primary School 2014

They are everywhere and add so much to the atmosphere in their play space. So much better than bare walls!

mosaic mural outdoor Coburn Primary School 2014

mosaic mural outdoor Coburn Primary School 2014

So I decided I would have a go at a CD tree. However, like most things I do, the idea seemed to get bigger and bigger. Which grade level would I do this with? Perhaps the 5s? Or maybe the 4s and the 5s? Well, if I was going to do it with the 4s and the 5s I might as well include the 6s and what about the 3s? So, of course, I am doing it with the whole school!!!!

That’s only 940+ CDs – aaaggghhhhh!!!

screaming woman

screaming woman


So there will definitely be more than one tree. Perhaps it will look a little bit like this? This is a CD tree mural from Reservoir West Primary School created by Max Darby.

painted CD tree mural Reservoir west Primary School

painted CD tree mural Reservoir west Primary School

And hopefully all the CDs will fit as tree foliage on the one wall! We’ll just have to wait and see.

Gabby and Mel, who teach Prep-2 Visual Arts, tackled their CDs and I tackled grades 3-6.

painted CDs 35 2015

painted CDs 35 2015

We used Viponds acrylic paint, which is deliciously bright and glossy, as recommended by Mel and Kate from Coburn Primary School, as it is suitable for outdoor murals and will last on the CDs. I was stunned when I realized that Viponds Paint is actually manufactured in Victoria, in North Coburg to be exact. Not all that far from where I grew up in Brunswick. It always feels good to support Victorian manufacturers! You can get it from Cavalier Art Supplies in Geelong or Zart Art in Box Hill.

Viponds artist acrylic paint

Viponds artist acrylic paint

It really is gorgeous paint and I discussed why we needed to use it with the students and the huge price difference between it and ordinary school acrylic paint. They were all very careful with it and, in fact, the grade 3-6 students used less paint than I actually thought they would.

painted CD 6 2015

painted CD 6 2015

I asked the students to paint a background colour on first, which was very quick with a fat brush. I had eight students fit around one painting table and then place their wet CD onto the painting rack which was now covered in newspaper so the CDs wouldn’t fall through the holes. As this was so quick and easy to do it was easily worked around all our other ongoing activities for each grade level.

painted CD 42 2015

painted CD 42 2015

The following week the students were given back their CD and, as we had done so much pattern work earlier in the year, I asked them to decorate their CD with pattern/s.

painted CD 56 2015

painted CD 56 2015

I was so impressed with the range of finished CDs and know they will look beautiful when the mural is finally put together. That’s job number 4,095,864,345 on my to do list!

painted CD 46 2015

painted CD 46 2015

And the Prep – 2 CDs are just as lovely as the 3 – 6 ones, as well as being strikingly different! I will share some of them when I grab some photos of them from Mel and Gabby.

painted CD 11 2015

painted CD 11 2015

And as for the CDs, I didn’t buy a single one! I just asked the Cambridge Primary School staff and community to clean out their DVD cupboards and their computer desks and send all their DEAD DISKS to me! DEAD being scratched, obsolete, not working, DVDs, CDs, game console disks, start up disks for 5 computers ago, can’t even remember where it came from disks, and we had more than 1000 in no time!

painted CD 1 2015

painted CD 1 2015

So I hope you have enjoyed looking at all these lovely painted CDs and I’ll be happy to share the next instalment of putting the mural together when it happens. I’m sure the students would appreciate it if you left them a comment.

painted CD 70 2015




November 17


Firstly, the Principal’s write up about the Art Show in her column in the school newsletter!!!

Congratulations to Shelley Menhennet and Susie Blake for the amazing job they did on the Art Show and leading up to it. Having spent some time at the Art Show, I was overwhelmed by the response from the community who attended the Art Show! It was a magnificent celebration for our community; there was so much positive feedback, and events such as this build our school into a stronger and more united communi-ty. The Art Show was a fabulous reminder of what a very special place Cambridge Primary School is and what very special and amazing people we work with.

Thank you Meenah!

And now for the School newsletter item!

Art Room News

Thank you! Thank You! Thank You! Thank you to all the wonderful families and friends that came to the Cambridge Primary School Biennial Art Show 2013! It was a huge success. I spoke to parents I have known for years and years and parents who were brand new to the school and everything in between and it was terrific to hear your support and praise for the Visual Arts Program. I especially liked all the “Oohs,” and “Aahs,” as everyone came round the corner and entered into the huge space in the middle!It was fantastic to see all of your smiling faces and especially the faces of all your children, grinning PROUDLY from ear to ear. And the children of Cambridge Primary School should be proud of themselves as their art work looked magical, on display, for everyone to see.

As you have probably already heard the Art Show, as announced at assembly on Monday morning, was a SELL OUT! Ms Cascone bought up so much work for Ms Marchbank that there was way too much for her to decorate her house with, so she sent lots of pieces back to school, and they are SLOWLY being distributed back through the classrooms. If your child has not received their work back yet, don’t panic! Mrs Blake and I have only had around 2000 pieces of work to distribute so it has all taken a bit longer that we thought to send it all home!

Thank you to those families that did buy their child’s art work. We were astounded when the count was done on Monday morning that the art sales alone had raised almost $1000. Most of this money will be used to buy some wooden weaving looms of assorted sizes for the children to use in the Art rooms.

Thank you to the Junior School Councillors for helping out when Mrs Blake and I thought we might not get all the work up in time. Thank you to Ms Mason ( and cute Estelle) and Ms McKenzie who came in to school in their own time to help us with the set up. Thank you to Ms Cascone, Mrs Hardy and Charlotte who came in especially to help us with the pack up. And thank you to Amy and Sarah Blake and Sam, Sebastian and Georgia Menhennet who worked long hours, both at school and at home, to support their exhausted, cranky mothers. It’s hard work being a teacher’s kid some-times!!!

I am really looking forward to the next art show, in two years time, and all the parents who said they would like to help out next time and will join me on the 2015 Art Show Committee. It will be fantastic to have so many willing helpers on board. And this is a picture of what I lloked like when I got home from the Art Show on the Saturday afternoon!



ART ROOM HELPERS If you would like to help out in the Art room
just come and see me and we will book a time that suits you.
You don’t have to book in for the time that your child is in the
Art room and you don’t need any special skills, just a willingness
to help out, and some time to do it.
It will give you the opportunity to experience one of our
specialist programs up close!

Don’t forget the BLOG – New art show photos on the blog soon – only about 1000 photos to go through first!?!?!?!


DONATIONS – Thank you for all the donations that keep arriving at the main art room. We love to reuse and recycle!


CDs (scratched ,not working or just a terrible singer, it doesn’t
really matter as we will be using them for WEAVING
(We have only received three but need many more!!!)


CLEAN plastic bottle TOPS and LIDS (I’m starting to save them for a big project for next year!)
JUNK OBJECTS FOR PRINTING (keys, buttons, spools, buckles, zips, cogs, screws, kitchen utensils, cutlery, clean sponges,etc, etc) Anything you can think of that would make an interesting impression in paint!
And anything else you can think of that you would like to donate!!!

Thank you!