April 21

GRADE 4 CLAY CELESTIAL BODIES

When we return to school after Easter my grade 4 students will be almost ready to create their celestial bodies in clay. They will have one more practice session and then in week 2 they will make their final piece.

Clay, as for most things with my students, is never a one off session. You cannot get skill development or clayworks like these without exploring the materials and tools and experimenting with ideas. Yes, it is hard work, yes, it is messy, and yes, it can be loud, especially at pack up time on my awfully thin laminated art room table tops but the students are smiling, eager and learning – what more could you want!

Whenever we are working with clay I frequently remind the students that we only have one rule for clay. I say it and the students all chant it back to me, whether they are in Preps or Grade 6. “YOU MUST BE SENSIBLE WITH THE CLAY! With the Prep students I usually take it a bit further.

“Can you stick it in your ear?’                                    “NO!”

Can you stick it in somebody else’s ear?”              “NO!”

Can you stick it in Mrs Menhennet’s ear?             “NO!”

And on it goes until they are all falling about laughing.

However, the students know this is quite serious as we then discuss the consequence of not being sensible with the clay (and the tools and the slip, etc). And the consequence is that the clay is removed from the student. They then wash their hands and sit on the floor while everyone else is working at the tables. A direct consequence like this makes sense to the students and is much more effective than a detention that would not even be on the same day!

And now back to the process………In the first session I bombard the students with images of artworks incorporating the sun, the moon, planets, stars, etc, etc.

These images include all sorts of artworks – jewellery, clayworks, paintings, drawings, sculptures, metalwork, embroideries, photography, and the list goes on.  You can find lots of images of celestial bodies on my Pinterest board.

And then I let them loose on the clay – and then we pack up and when it is pack up time NOBODY wants to, as they are all so into what they are doing.

In the second session I show them examples from grade 4 students previously. We discuss them and any interesting stuff they have looked at in their independent research and then they get stuck into their own creations/experiments again. I also put slip on the tables and remind them how to use correct joining technique – the four s words –  score, slip, stick, smooth! And they chant them after me!

Depending on the school calendar and the crazy timetable that changes constantly, the students will have one or two more sessions to practice/refine their ideas.  The students choose whether to make a flat 2D or a 3D clay piece. There are usually groans at pack up time at the end of these sessions but I do photograph any experiments the students are keen to keep in mind and then they all pack up their clay.

The students are encouraged to do their own research for inspirational images in their own time as they all have IPads and/or computer access.

By the time the final session comes around the students know that they need to complete their clay piece in one session. Most students manage this as they have been working on an idea for several sessions and get faster at creating and refining their clay piece each week.

I scratch the students initials and grade into the base of their finished piece with a sharp skewer before I put it on a rack to dry. This seems to eliminate any arguments about which piece belongs to whom which I used to have when they all did it themselves, as it is in my neat lettering. It doesn’t take long, gives me a chance for a brief chat with the artist about their work and check that it is joined together properly and perhaps send some students back to the table to fix an issue.

Once the works have been fired the students paint them. I encourage the students to think about the painting process before they start and have a plan in their head for what they want to do. Just a simple statement like this is enough to stop most rushing and slapping paint on willy nilly!

Thanks for looking. Leave a comment!

Shell

April 17

Grade 5 JOURNAL COVERS OLD AND NEW

As mentioned in my previous post I use a scrapbook as an art journal for my students from grades 1-6. Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts

Every year the students make a new cover for their art journal.Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts

In the past I would hand the Grade 5 students an A4 sheet of paper with a grid of boxes already photocopied on it and ask the students to choose a colour and paint each box to show the colour value.Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts

Once the paint was dry (week 2) they then glued this sheet onto their scrapbook cover and gave their book a large title and  ensured their name and grade was easily readable. Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts

I love how creatively these students completed their grade 5 art journal covers using scrap paper, pencils and textas.

Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts  Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts

This year I have changed the grade 5 journal cover completely after seeing this gem on Pinterest. This elements of art activity is by Michelle from Tiny Art Room, a wonderful art teacher’s blog. You can check out her step by step instructions by clicking on the link above.Art elements by tiny art room used as inspiration for grade 5 journal cover

It was a terrific way for the students to show me their understanding of the elements of art and decorate their journal cover at the same time!Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual ArtsGrade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts

Initially I showed the students a scribbly mock up I had done of what a finished cover COULD look like and then I demonstrated the simple ruling up of the different sections. The students DID NOT have to follow my layout though. As long as their cover demonstrated the seven elements of art and had a clearly readable title and their name and grade, they could use whatever layout they came up with.

 

Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual ArtsGrade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts

I then asked one of my magnificent Art Ambassadors to come up with a grade 5 cover for me and Farheen did a fantastic job, in A3 size instead of A4, so it would be easy for the students to see after I clipped it onto the whiteboard. Brilliant! And of course, I forgot to photograph it! 🙁

I’ll update this post with a photo of it when I get back to school as we are on end of Term 1 holidays and won’t go back to school until after Easter. 🙂

I have found that I prefer to use student samples whenever I can. It makes a huuuuuge difference! It doesn’t matter how many times I tell the students that their artwork doesn’t have to look exactly like mine, and I give them plenty of options for choice, about 85% of artworks would look as close to my sample as possible. Always….. doesn’t matter what I say…… always!This is greatly reduced when I show a range of student created samples. This is one of the great benefits of photographing student artworks.

I was also surprised at how many students struggled with ruling up the cover that I demonstrated for them. And I did demonstrate it for them, once altogether and then at every table and then for many individuals that just weren’t getting it. They did not have to use my way of dividing up the A4 piece of paper to fit the elements of art in. They could do it any way they liked but few tried anything else, even though they were struggling to rule it up. They really couldn’t figure out how I ruled up the sections! It was like I was doing some amazing magic trick every time I demonstrated it!!!

wow

These students are in Grade 5 and most of them had NO IDEA how to RULE A STRAIGHT LINE WITH A RULER! They didn’t even have to measure anything, just rule up straight lines diagonally from corner to corner. They actually had no idea how to put pressure on the ruler with the fingers of your hand without the pencil to hold the ruler still! I will use this video next time so I won’t need to be explaining it over and over and over again.

So this says to me that at Grade 5 level they had never done this before! How is that possible? Don’t they have to measure lengths in maths? Or rule up shapes? They certainly did the last time I taught maths and it wasn’t that long ago!

screaming woman

Well, ruler struggles aside, I will definitely be using this cover idea again for grade 5  as the students that persevered and finished their covers did a really fantastic job. These are artworks to be proud of! Thanks for looking and I know the students would love it if you left a comment!

Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts

Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts

Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts

Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts

Grade 5 journal cover incorporating seven elements of art line shape form texture space value Cambridge Primary School Visual Arts

March 31

VISUAL ARTS SCHOOL NEWSLETTER CONTRIBUTION NO 2 2019

ART ROOM NEWS

OUR WINGS ARE FINISHED

Wings Cambridge Primary School 2019

Have you been in the main hallway lately? Our beautiful wings are finished, made up of all those incredible feathers that the 3/4/5/6 students and staff worked on at the start of the year. Our wings, like Street Artist Kelsey Montague’s, are interactive as there is a gap in the middle of the wings for you to fit and have your photo taken! Don’t forget to bring your device with you when you come in to have a look! I will email some photos to Kelsey Montague so she can see how her street art inspired us!

Wings Cambridge Primary School 2019

Kelsey Montague wings Nashville TennesseeI have started photographing the students standing at the wings, looking as if they belong to them and they are about to fly away!

Please remember that the feathers are made of paper so they should not be touched while you are looking at them. And thanks to Mrs Naushabah Shahzad for helping put the wings together!

Thank you

CONGRATULATIONS NEW ART AMBASSADORS!

Congratulations

The students have been waiting sooooooooo long for the new Art Ambassadors to be announced as Mrs Menhennet was waiting for the next grade 3-6 assembly to do it. Finally, we had an upper school assembly on Monday afternoon – and Mrs Menhennet wasn’t at school to make the announcement! AAAAGGGGHHHH!

So rather than make the students wait any longer here is the list!

Congratulations to

Dinali 5A                      Brooke 5B                    Steph 5B

Zunaira 5A                   Asees 5B.                    Aleena 5F

Inaaya 5A                    Julia 5B                        Sithika 5F

Chelsea 6A                  Amber 6A                     Rishit 6B

 

New Art Ambassadors need to see Mrs Menhennet to get their badge!

I was truly overwhelmed by the amount of Expressions of Interest that were submitted for these important student leadership positions. I’m just very sorry that I couldn’t give everybody that applied a position.

I went to the MC Escher EXHIBITION at THE NGV!

The MC Escher exhibition at the NGV is a collaboration Japanese design company NENDO.

Nendo did an exceptional job of incorporating Escher’s art style into the overall design of the exhibition. The Escher artworks came from a special museum in Holland.

Art ambassador 2019 Emma

The exhibition includes many of Escher’s artworks from realistic pieces to more geometric mind boggling ones! The exhibition has a fantastic and interesting design and layout that you would never have seen before.

There is an awesome gift shop located at the end of the exhibition. Some of the products there included posters, books, skateboards, drink bottles, magnets, postcards, notebooks and clothing. You will not regret going to the Escher X Nendo exhibition at the NGV in Melbourne – but you need to hurry – it closes on the 7th April!

By Emma Flower 6E CPS Art Ambassador

DONATIONS

Thank you so much for all the donations that enhance our program. Throughout the year I will inform you of items that can be recycled through the art room. In the last week or so we have received:-

  • wool

  • ribbon

  • buttons

  • paint sample cards

  • assorted plastic lids

  • etc, etc, etc

 The art room would really like to receive some magazines to fill up our magazine bin that is used all over the school.

The fabric bins are absolutely full so we don’t need any more fabric until further notice.

reduce reuse recycle

Thank you,

Shelley Menhennet

 

 

March 31

VISUAL ARTS SCHOOL NEWSLETTER CONTRIBUTION NO 1 2019

ART ROOM NEWS

M.C. ESCHER @ NGV

Students in Grade 3/4/5/6 have been looking at short videos and prints of the incredible artwork of M.C.Escher this week. Many students have asked me for links to utilise at home so they can see more of his work. I have listed some links below.

MC Escher Lizards

Escher reptiles

I am hoping to attend the ESCHER X NENDO exhibition at NGV International in St Kilda Rd this weekend. It is on at the gallery until the 7th April and has 157 of Escher’s awe inspiring artworks on display.

Esher sphere reflection Escher Studio

The exhibition has been designed by NENDO, a design group from Japan and so many people have said to me that the way the exhibition has been set up is as amazing as the artwork itself!

https://www.ngv.vic.gov.au/whats-on/

https://www.ngv.vic.gov.au/channel/

https://kids.kiddle.co/M._C._Escher

https://www.mcescher.com/

https://www.nga.gov/features/slideshows/mc-escher-life-and-work.html#slide_1

Feathers and Art JOURNAL covers 

Students in grades 3/4/5/6 are finishing up their beautiful feathers which are going to be used to create a mural on the display boards in the main hallway. It is utterly amazing how different they all are and just holding a handful together is stunning. I can’t wait until we have 600 on the display boards!Wings feathers Cambridge Primary School 2019Wings feathers Cambridge Primary School 2019

Wings feathers Cambridge Primary School 2019

This is the photo of Kelsey Montague’s street art we looked at which is on a wall in the city of Nashville, Tennessee.  She has also painted a pair of wings at Melbourne Central in the city. I wonder if you can guess what is going to happen to all the feathers the students have been making.

Kelsey Montague wings Nashville Tennessee

 

 

 

Art journal covers are being worked on next with each grade level creating their journal cover in a different way. I am looking forward to getting some of these on display as well. Last year’s display was excellent but I’m sure this year’s will be even better!

grade 6 art journal 2018 Cambridge Primary School pencil shavings

 

Art room helpers  – The Art Room still needs more helpers! Don’t be shy! I have plenty of art journals that need to be covered and display boards that need to be covered and pictures that need to be laminated, etc, etc, etc. 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.

 

Just see Mrs Menhennet for details.

 

What is an Art AMBASSADOR?

Being an Art Ambassador is an important and enjoyable leadership position. We help organise the materials in the art room like paints, pencils and textas as well as sort and store art work. We help clean during clay work by swe

Art ambassador 2019 Emma

eping up the dust and putting out clay mats. We clean and look after equipment like paint brushes so other students don’t have to do it in their art sessions. We help put up displays in the corridors and make display labels for them. The displays

always look stunning when we have finished! In 2018 the displays included things like clay work, the teeny tiny artworks, signs made by the Preps with plastic lids and many others. We even sometimes write up articles for the school newsletter!

By Emma Flower 6E CPS Art Ambassador

New ART AMBASSADORS announced soon 

Thank you to all the students in grade 5 and 6 that have applied to be Art Ambassadors in 2019. Applications have now closed and the new ambassadors will be announced soon. J

DISPLAYS AT CAMBRIDGE PS

Our students and Art Ambassadors work hard to make and display our art work and we like to brighten up the hallways so they don’t look dull and boring. Please demonstrate our Cambridge Primary School value of RESPECT and respect other students work by NOT TOUCHING the displays. YoArt Ambassador Laurau are more than welcome to look and talk quietly about the artworks you can see but PLEASE DO NOT TOUCH!

By Laura Jolley 6C CPS Art Ambassador J

DONATIONS

Thank you so much for all the donations that enhance our program. Throughout the year I will inform you of items that can be recycled through the art room. In the last week or so we have received:-

  • ice cream containers
  • yoghurt tubs
  • small boxes
  • wallpaper offcuts
  • fabric scraps
  • assorted plastic lids
  • etc, etc, etc

reduce reuse recycle

The art room would really like to receive some magazines to fill up our magazine bin that is used all over the school.

The fabric bins are absolutely full so we don’t need any more fabric until further notice.

Thank you,

Shelley Menhennet