As mentioned in my previous post I use a scrapbook as an art journal for my students from grades 1-6.
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.
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.
I love how creatively these students completed their grade 5 art journal covers using scrap paper, pencils and textas.
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.
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!
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.
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!!!
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!
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!
This is what happened when I gave the Grade 1 children a tub of wooden clay tools for the first time. Up until this stage they had only been using their hands and fingers as tools. I explained that this was a time to try out and experiment with the tools and see what they could do with them.
It was interesting how some of the children madly textured their work while others incorporated the tools into their finished items. Hey, I didn’t tell them that they couldn’t do that!
Quite a few of the children created a clutch of a few small items rather than make one large piece, and they all knew that none of this work was going to be kept but I would try to photograph their experiments before their session finished.
We certainly had a terrific discussion after everyone had walked aroud and looked at each other’s work.
“How did you do that?”
I wish I had thought of that!”
“I’m going to try to do mine like that next time!”
How did you make that shape?”
“Can we use the clay tools like that?”
“I made my clay flat like a picture but next time I want to make a fat shape that sits up on the table.”
And just in case you were like me who mistakenly assumed this was a nice tree – this is the Tower of Isengard from the Lord of the Rings!!!