Saturday, January 15, 2011

Kindergarten Art

Hello... I (Crystal Myers) was asked to share some projects I have done in the kindergarten classroom. 

This is the first art lesson I did for the kindergarten class. It is a lesson on shapes and was simple for the kids. It just takes a little preparation time, as there are many shapes to cut out. I started out by talking about the different shapes and asking the kids to identify them as I held them up. I also explained that you can make new shapes by placing two shapes side-by-side (two squares can make a rectangle or two triangles can make a square). I showed the kids my examples of a rocket-ship, houses, and a caterpillar (not shown), and then had them identify the shapes in the picture.
Example of rocket ship
Example of houses

I passed out to each table construction paper, glue, and then the shapes I had previously cut out (large and small squares of all colors, large and small triangles of all colors, and large and small circles of all colors). 
The kids chose which example they wanted to copy and chose the appropriate shapes. Once the shapes were glued on, they used crayons to add details and (most importantly) their names. 
"Rocket Ship" by Wyatt, age 6

The caterpillar example (not shown) consisted of a bunch of circles linked together to make the body and triangles below each circle to make the feet. On the first circle I drew antennae and a smiley face.

To the right is a version done by one of the students in the class. He even added men on the moon! (the red figures on the large yellow circle)

Example of jack o' lantern
"Halloween Pumpkin" by Wyatt, age 6
The next project I did was near Halloween, so using the same theme with shapes, we made jack o' lanterns. I cut out extra large orange circles for each student. They glued these onto a sheet of construction paper their choice of color. They then used crayons to draw vertical stripes on the orange circle.  Once this was done, I handed out to each table a variety of shapes in assorted colors for them to use to make a face for their jack o' lanterns. 
I was impressed with the creativity of the all the students!

The preparation for this project included cutting out small circles, squares, triangles, and stars in an assortment of colors.

Example of leaf rubbings
For November I did a lesson on texture. I talked about what texture is (how something feels) and the different kinds of texture (bumpy like the playground outside, sharp like a cactus, smooth like the tops of the tables, fuzzy like the carpet, etc.)
Example of leaf rubbings with orange mat
I then talked about the different types of leaves and their textures.
Next, I demonstrated how to place a leaf under a sheet of computer paper and using the side of a crayon (with the paper removed), color or rub the crayon over the leaf to make it's texture appear on the paper. I repeated the process with a different leaf and a different color of crayon until the entire paper was covered in leaves. Then I passed out supplies and let the kids go.
Once the students were done, they selected a sheet of construction paper in their choice of color to glue their leaf rubbings onto (an instant mat!).

Preparation for this project included finding a large assortment of leaves that I placed in zip-lock baggies for each table to share and peeling the paper off of crayons, which were also placed in zip-lock baggies for each table to share.
If you wanted to add a little bit of science/nature to this lesson you could identify the different types of leaves and the talk about the trees they come from (this leaf comes from a maple tree. We get maple syrup from some kinds of maple trees).

"Bubbles" by Wyatt, age 6
 For December I did a lesson in color. I had small bowls in which I added tempera paint. In the first bowl I had blue paint. In the second I had yellow and in the third I had red. I asked the students what colors these were. I told them these are the PRIMARY colors. They're called "primary" colors because these are the colors you mix to make every other color of the rainbow. In a fourth bowl I added a lot of yellow to a little bit of blue and asked what color these two colors would make. Then before their very eyes I mixed the colors and green appeared. I did the same thing in a fifth bowl with a lot of yellow and a little bit of red and orange appeared. Then in the sixth bowl equal amounts of red and blue to make violet (purple). To each of these bowls I added a couple squirts of dish soap and some water.
Each student was then given their very own straw (NO SHARING!) and asked to demonstrate how to BLOW. Once this was done, I demonstrated how to make bubble prints: place straw into paint/water/soap mixture and blow until bubbles come to the top of the bowl, then gently lower piece of white paper over the bubbles and then gently lift up. On the paper should be a print of the bubbles. 

I organized this activity by placing a different color of soap/paint/water mixture on each table. I had each group of students make a bubble print of the color at their table and then rotate (remembering to take their straws with them!) until each student made one bubble print of each color. Make sure that the students make the prints all over the paper, not just in one spot.
I've learned that computer paper is better than white construction paper because the construction paper absorbs a lot  of water and then wants to tear.

This art project is a lot of fun and very messy. Beware of students who blow their bubbles WAY too big for their bowls! Also beware of students drinking the paint/water/soap mixture. It's hard for some kids not to suck-in when they have a straw (I've had this happen a few times); the soap/paint/water mixture tastes yucky, but is harmless. I've learned that computer paper is better than white construction paper because the construction paper absorbs a lot of water and then wants to tear. Also, use TEMPERA paint instead of acrylic paint. Acrylic paint stains clothes!

Example of bubble print turned into picture
Example of bubble print turned into picture
A variation of this project is to have the students just make two bubble prints and then have them turn the prints into a picture. (fish, turtles, dinosaur eggs, possibilities are endless!)

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