Showing posts with label art teacher. Show all posts
Showing posts with label art teacher. Show all posts

Thursday, January 18, 2018

DIY: Latch Hook Jacket!

In case latch hooking a mini rug and sewing it to the back of a jean jacket wasn't the first clue...I have cabin fever! I'm currently on my SEVENTH day off in a row after we got some snowy weather here in the South. Y'all know, we Southern Lilies cannot handle that white powdery stuff and it just shuts our town down. I've been knitting, needle felting, and latch hooking since. It's been GLORIOUS...but with this DIY, I'm starting to question my sanity. 
 When bad weather is predicted in these here parts, everyone makes a mad dash to the grocery store. I happened to pop in to get my staples (cat food and a bottle of wine. Pretty sure nothing says pathetic more than that!) when I was practically run down by carts filled with Wonder Bread and gallons of milk. What EXACTLY does one do with that much bread and milk? Are milk sammies a thing?
 Me, when bad weather hits, I skip the grocery and head to the craft store. My provisions are CRAFTS!! I know I'm gonna need something to occupy my hands. So I hit the craft store with the idea of knitting a rainbow scarf rolling around in my head. After piling my cart full of Roy G. Biv yarn-i-ness, I turned a corner and spotted a whole aisle of these: LATCH HOOK KITS!
I grew up in the best era: the 80's. Crafting was all the rage and I was a huge fan. One of my faves? Latch hooking. I can still remember sitting on my babysitter's couch, latch hooking a mushroom in all those horrible 80's browns and greens while watching MTV. I remember they played that video for Madness' Our House about 20 times a day. I can still see it in my head!
Even my parents caught the latch hook rug and made a huge red rug with a bright orange running tiger across it. It sat in between their dresser and their waterbed (omg! Why was that a thing?!) for years. 
I never did finish my mushroom rug but I managed to complete this guy in just a couple nights. I had EVERY intention of taking this to school, showing the kids how to do it and adding it to my early finishers fibers area...but when I got the call for another snow day, I couldn't stop myself! When I bought it, I thought it would be fun to hang in the art room as a reference for TEXTURE (and I still plan to do that!)...but, in all my cabin fever wisdom, I decided to add it to the back of a jacket instead.
The final design, only being 8" square, was not as big as I would have liked to fill the back panel of the coat. So I added 8 additional rows: two turquoise and two indigo, both at the top and the bottom. This filled the space completely. I did have to cut the yarn to that certain size to hook which was a slight drag...but not that bad. 
 
 From there, I just used a super sharp needle and some super strong thread and stitched it to the back of the jacket. Easy! Right after this photo, Asha the cat came over and planted herself right here. IT'S A COAT, KITTY! NOT A RUG! NOW MOVE, I GOTTA VACCUM IT!




Alright, be honest: is this crazy or what?!
Not gonna lie, it's warm and certainly easy on the back when I sit down. Kinda like giving a panda a piggy back ride. 
Pretty sure I'm gonna be getting a lot of back rubs from the kids for this one!
Now, don't judge...I already have designs on hooking a Mona Lisa coat! Okay...time for me to leave the house. Fresh air and human contact might do me some good. 

 photo signature_zpsd10b3273.png
Read more »

Thursday, December 28, 2017

In the Art Room: How to Make Seat Sacks!

 I hope all y'all had a wonderful holiday! Ours was super low-key and relaxing. I've been taking time to catch up on projects for the art room...just this week alone, I've managed to start three new projects (and finish zero...no surprise there). While working on my latest project, I decided to film the process and share it with you cuz I'm super stoked: Seat Sacks!
 Heaven on Earth, aka the Dollar Tree, had seat sacks or over the chair storage in their education isle recently and I was so stoked. Currently, when my kiddos finish early and only have a few minutes to spare, they LOVE to go and get a dry erase board. However, I don't love the extra milling around the room when it's so close to clean up. However-however, I never wanna see a kid just SITTING in their seat, even if for a few moments, not creating something, anything. So when I saw these seat sacks, I thought they'd be the perfect solution: I could store dry erase boards in there (or, dry erase board SLEEVES with drawing sheets, YES!! More on those in a moment) and that would prevent extra movin' and confusion during cleanup. 
 Now, as you might know, I'm currently on an art room redo bender and I'm color coordinating EVERYTHING. So, while I was excited about these seat sacks, I was disappointed that the above were my only color options. By the way, you can purchase these in bulk here, if they are not available at your local Dollar Tree. 

So I went on a quest to find another source for the sacks. Y'all. These guys are COSTLY! Then I got the bright idea to SPRAY PAINT the sacks...so I bought one as a test and, um, no. That did not work. Not. At. All. 
The one that was sadly spray painted then became my pattern. I looked at the seat sack closely and realized it's a super simple pattern that requires very few supplies. Here's what I used:

* 2 yards of ripstop fabric. Really, 1.5 yards would have been plenty. I chose that kind of nylon fabric because I thought it would be easier to wipe down.

* 4 packages of bias tape. I am doing 4 sacks per table and this proved to be the right amount of tape. 

* Elastic. I used the wider kind.

Here are the directions:
Like I said in the video, I did this in assembly line fashion so as to get it done faster. I started by cutting everything out and then set to stitching all the red ones first, then the orange...this way I didn't have to keep changing out my thread and bobbin.
 I noticed online that there are a lot of other seat sack tutorials...so be sure to check out your options if you do this. I just went the route I thought was easiest. I don't plan to put anything heavy in these so I'm hoping that they'll be solid enough.
 In case you need those measurements again...
 I don't know if you noticed in the first photo but you'll see the kind of chairs that I have. These seat sacks fit them perfectly. If you decide to make these, you'll def wanna be certain it will work for your chairs!
 Of course I had to add a label! I got these labels made a while back from Dutch Label Shop. It says Art Will Rock You. This is the back
 And this is the front! I'll keep you posted on how these work out in my art room. They'll either be a hit or a miss...there never seems to be gray area in my art room!
 Do y'all use seat sacks? How so? Love to hear more!
My little assembly line of pocket making. Wish me luck!
 photo signature_zpsd10b3273.png
Read more »

Monday, November 27, 2017

In the Art Room: Second Grade Super Hero Selfies!

 My second grade kiddos just finished up their Super Hero Selfies for their Artome art show! These 12" X 9" works of art were so much fun to make...and to see the finished result. I thought I'd share the process with y'all!
 We began by chatting about Vincent van Gogh and looking at Starry Night. From there, we used our paper and my VERY favorite oil pastels (Sargent's florescent brand!) and created our skies. Because I have 30 minute art classes, that took one art class. The following art class, we added either all warm or all cool watercolor to our skies:
Y'all might have heard: I LOVE me some Crayola watercolor paint. I order the following and place them in each watercolor pan: magenta, red, red-orange, yellow, green, turquoise, blue-violet and violet. I place them in that order so the kiddos know what colors they can use as far as warm/cool colors go. The following day, I busted out the tiny brushes and India ink for some cityscape painting:
We started by painting simple rectangle shapes. Then we added shapes on top of those like triangles, rectangles and squares. From there, windows were added. They really rocked these!
Many of my students sketched their cities out on dry erase boards first. This really helped them get comfortable with their ideas before attacking their paper. It did mean that some kids took two 30 minute art classes to complete their cities...I was okay with that. I never mind the kids going slower if it means they do their best and are proud of their work.
Once the paintings were complete, we could start creating our Super Hero Selfie! The kids were given a circle template...simply so we didn't end up with tiny little folks. The template really helped them gauge size and get a jump start. I did a quick demo on how to create a body by using shapes like a rectangle for the torso. I showed them how to draw stick arms and legs and turn them into THICK arms and legs. Some of us are still pretty skinny tho, ha!
LOTS of kids wanted to add their pets or their siblings as their sidekick...how cute! After drawing with pencil, tracing with Sharpie, the kids added color with color pencils. In all, that process took about two art classes as well.
 Then the CAREFUL cutting began. Not gonna lie: some of us may have cut off limbs. No biggie, we simply glued them back in when we glued ourselves onto the background. 
 When coloring, we did talk quite a bit about color schemes. We chatted about the colors of Superman and Spiderman, Wonder Woman and the rest...they have about three specific colors. The kids were tasked with picking out 2-4 colors for their hero.
 Weapons were not approved but shields were, of course!
 And capes! 
 And disguises!
 One thing that really helped was giving the kids an About Me super hero sheet. They had to come up with a name for their hero, what their special power was and how they make the world a better place. On that same sheet, they had to create a sketch of themselves as well as a sidekick. 
 I'm really excited about these and cannot wait to see them at our art show!
 I don't often repeat projects but this one was a winner with the kids and parents last year. 
 Last year, I had the kids paint a black silhouette of the city and add the windows with paper. I didn't love that as much...the paper didn't really stick well to the ink and the kids didn't really rock those windows. You can see it here. 
 I'm IN LOVE with the designs on her buildings. Second grade, y'all! 
 I've also done a lesson similar but more advanced with my fourth grade kiddos. You can check that out here. 
  Every time I see one of these, I laugh...they are so stinkin' cute. Especially when you know the artist behind the masterpiece!
 Taking that color coordinated thing super seriously...you know I like that!
 In all, this is not a quickie project...but one that really teaches so much and creates something that each kiddo is proud of! 
 photo signature_zpsd10b3273.png
Read more »

Sunday, November 26, 2017

In the Art Room: Art Room Management

 A couple of weeks ago, on my Facebook LIVE chat, I had my art teacher buddy Kaitlyn Edington. I "met" Kaitlyn via her IG account which is AMAZING. She's not only got a beautiful art room with some amazing project ideas but has INCREDIBLE classroom management.  She's also fabulous at sharing her methods. I had her chat with us one night during LIVE (the chat is still archived here) where she shared her system. I loved her ideas...but, like y'all, I had to think of how I would make it work in my art teacherin' world. I'm a firm believer, just like Kaitlyn, that we are all different and should totally celebrate those differences. There is no "once size fits all" for art teacherin'...so the trick is finding out what works for YOU. After mulling over her system and imagining how it might work in my art room, I came up with this:
I rolled this out with my students a couple of weeks before Thanksgiving break and, I gotta say, it's been working out wonderfully! The kids are really responding well. My first grade has really taken to it well...the grade that I thought would not at all. I think they crave the structure the most out of all my classes this year so it's really worked for them. My second graders LOVELOVELOVE art (all my kiddos do, but these kids are IN.TO.IT.) so they hardly need reminders...although their enthusiasm can sometimes be their downfall. This system has really helped them focus. 
 My older students are loving this too...I have those big, doubled up classes so the noise level was a constant battle. I don't mind chatter...if it's work focused. A lot of times, with my third graders, it is not. So this has helped them quite a bit. However, with my older kiddos, I have them for an hour...I can't even stay quiet that long! So I usually move the brush to yellow about half way into their art class. 
 Okay...I just realized I've not explained this system to you at all! I just assumed you'd watched the video. But, if you can't stand the sound of my voice (you and me both), I'll give you the Cliff's notes. 
 I have these three paintings hanging in my art room. I've created FREE downloadable PDF's for you so you can simply print and laminate. You can find the red can here, yellow can here and the green can here. I added velcro dots to hold the paint brush...but a drawing of a paintbrush would work just as well. 

So the deal is this: the cans let the kids know the expected noise level. Red is silent, yellow is whispering and green is indoor voices. I prefer my students to work quietly. I only see them for 60 minutes a week (if I'm lucky) and I want them to create as much as they can during our short time together. I usually keep the brush on red...except for midway through the classes of my older kiddos. 
 How does this expected behavior get monitored? Each table of four kiddos has a color coded table caddy. I found these caddies at Dollar Tree and simply spray painted them to match the tables. Then I placed red duct tape on one side of the caddy and green on the other. Each table begins with 5 clips on the green tape. I went with 5 because 1. That's what Kaitlyn suggested; 2. it makes it so the kids don't think of themselves as a clip...meaning "Joe had to move his clip!" It's not like that...the TABLE had to move a clip because of a teammates behavior and 3. Because it's a lot easier to count the scores by 5's! 

I remind the kids before I had them their table folder (which is also something new I'm trying and LOOOVING) what color the paintbrush is on. When they head to their seats, they are expected to pass out the artwork and get started quietly. This has really helped the kids settle in and get started. If I have to remind a table more than once, I ask them to move a clip. Clips are moved based on not following directions, chatting, not cleaning up...just general behaviors that need improvement. At the end of art class, I do a little shout out:
 "Who still has all 5 clips? Please write a 5 on your folder and line up!" Then I go down the line with 4 and then 3. I just noticed that the green folder has an extra 5...we're still working on understanding this system. Obviously. 
 To monitor the amount of clips and scores, I taped these papers to their table folders. I have a couple things to add here:

1. WHERE HAVE TABLE FOLDERS BEEN MY WHOLE LIFE?! This has made passing out and collecting (dry!) artwork so stinkin' easy. 

2. WHAT IF WORK IS ON THE DRYING RACK?! Well, a friend recently suggested to me that have the kids write their names on the back in the same color as their table. So it's on my To Do to place color coded color pencils on the tables. As for yellow, I'll ask the kids to circle their names in that color.

3. THE LABEL KEEPS THEM ACCOUNTABLE. Having that label where they keep their score instead of me works much better for me...I can't keep up with my life but I know they'll be able to stay on top of the scorecard. 
I hope all that makes a little bit of sense...I'm so excited that this system as been working so well. My art room is more calm, I can spend more one on one time with my students and the craftsmanship has been much improved. Not to mention the teamwork! The kids have been working harder to get along and help each other. Thanks for letting me share!
 photo signature_zpsd10b3273.png
Read more »