Wednesday, May 30, 2012

We Scream for Ice Cream!

As the year winds down it's always hard to know when to STOP production in the art room.  Some classes are done all the work and I don't want to move on risking that those new projects wont get done.  Other classes are scrambling to finish up work.

If you find your self in the same predicament this is a fun one day project that worked really well for me!

I gave each student a large peice of paper.  On the back they had to write 4 ingredents you could buy at the grocery store but that you would not typically find in ice cream.
Examples: eggs, cucumbers, fish, raw meat, cheese, pasta, rice, donuts ect.

 Then we switched papers around.  So now each student had 4 ingredients they had to make into a four scoop ice cream cone.  It produced a really fabulous "EWWW"  "YUK" sound throughout the room. 

(I modeled this with students before hand and talked about how we can add the ingredients chopped up inside the ice cream.  I also brainstormed appropriate ingredients with students prior.) 

Then we got to work making our Ice Cream.

WARNING: this project is not for those with week stomachs

Thursday, May 10, 2012



Ok we got two new monsters this week.  These two remind us to be kind and friendly.  I have some younger students who can be really nasty sometimes.  I have heard things like "eww I don't like your tree" or "that looks stupid."  I'm working on changing that so here is our reminder. 

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Monsters have taken over my classroom!!!

As I mentioned in a previous post I am currently teaching as a long term sub. My students have some, in my opinion, bad habits. I have let some monsters creep into my classroom the past couple of weeks. These monsters are a great way to remind students of my rules. It also is helpful to just point at a monster instead of repeating the same rule over and over again. Students have also gotten really into it. They come into the class each week searching for the newest monster. It's a fun way to reinforce rules and not be a nag.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

New School!

Well for those of you who don't know I had been working at two different schools. Both schools were in Philadelphia both were around 90% free and reduced lunch. Both schools were in tough neighborhoods. While I really value my time working at these schools they had extremely small art programs. I was teaching about 14 hours a week and working another job and teaching on Saturdays in addition. ( I was being paid hourly to teach with out much paid prep time)

A little over a month ago I got the opportunity to become a long term sub in another district. It was a really hard decision to leave my two schools but I ultimately made the decision I felt would better my career. WHAT A DIFFERENCE. I am teaching 1-5th grade art to about 550 students!

I am really enjoying my time at my new school. It's amazing how much more invested my students are. I attribute that to a variety of different things: higher income area, more school investment in the arts, more exposure to art at home, more and better supplies ect.

I actually feel like I am teaching now instead of just managing students. Can't wait to share some of the work we have been doing!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Painting with out a classroom

Earlier this year I was working at two schools. At one school I didn't have a classroom. This posed a particularly hard challenge when it came to painting. I found some tips that might be helpful. Unfortunately the school was spread out over three levels with no elevator so I didn't have a cart. Instead I used canvas bags to carry supplies form class to class. I found that putting a cardboard box inside of a bag gave the convenience of bag with handles and the sturdiness needed to carry paper. When I did paint I made sure all of my water containers, cool whip containers, were all the same size. This way they stacked easily for clean up and carrying. I carried water in washed out gallon milk containers. I liked this better then buckets because walking up and down the stairs water didn't splash and slosh and there was an easy handle. I brought paper towels with me and gave each student a paper towel from the start. I relied a lot on student helpers.

Below are some pictures of my students warm and cool color perspective paintings in action.

Making my own Art work

I finally have found some time this year to make some work my self! I know its not always easy to find the time but I have really missed having my own creative outlet. Yes teaching, especially in low resource schools, certainly stretches our creative muscles but lets be honest we all have a passion to create!

I have been forcing my self to make work. I spent one weekend working on a painting and have signed up for ceramics classes again. I take throwing classes at the Clay Studio in Philadelphia. Beautiful studio space with amazing residents. Its one night a week form 7:00-10:00 and then we have the freedom to come in during open studio hours. It feels so good to get back on the wheel.