Blind Contour Line Self-Portraits & Piet Mondrian

This week was a full week of art!  Currently, 3-5th grade have been working on self-portraits in a variety of ways.  The first technique they learned was called a “blind contour line” portrait, which is when students used a mirror to illustrate their own face, but the catch was – they could NOT look down at their paper OR lift their pencil up.  It had to be done in one long continuous line.  This made for lots of challenging fun!

 

Next students were allowed to look at their paper while they worked, but they still had to use one long continuous contour line.

And finally, they were asked to create a “normal” self-portrait, paying extra special attention to their features that make them unique such as birthmarks, freckles, braces, dimples, glasses, etc.

Lastly, I had the pleasure of visiting the nursery school this week where I taught the little ones about Piet Mondrian and his use of primary colors.

It was a very lovely and eventful week!

Israel @ 70 Design Contest and Clay has Started!

Parents & students, as I’m sure most of you might have seen in your email, HT is holding a design contest for grades 1-8.  The deadline for submissions is November 20th and I have been telling the students all about it in art class.  For this contest, the kids are encouraged to work on it at home.  It is SUPER easy!!  All they need to do in order to participate is create a design that features the number 70, the verse מתחברים לישראל ב70, and a shnazzy design!  AND to make it even EASIER to participate, it only has to be done in black marker (please use pencil first just in case you make a mistake…happens to the best of us!).  The top two winners will win a gift card.  Store and amount of gift card are TBD.

Contest Guidelines

Moving on to our classroom projects, students in grades k-4 are now manipulating and experimenting with clay.  It really is fascinating for me to watch as an art teacher, how the students develop their sculpture skills as they move on from grade to grade.  I had 4th grade today and they created some truly magnificent works of art.  I was sincerely impressed!

In grades K-2 we are creating Israel Star Pendants.  Students are getting to work with REAL clay.  The first thing they tend to notice is the texture, which is a lot colder and wetter than the modeling clay we have been working with.  I’ve been hearing a lot of “This is REALLY cold!”

***I had just finished explaining the Israel @ 70 contest to 1st grade, so they were inspired to create Israel works of art with their clay.  How cute is this?***

Finally, I apologize for not being able to share what I did with the older grades this week as I had mentioned I would in the previous post, but we had an AMAZING guest speaker, Mr. Ernie Heimann, come in today, and give a presentation on his experience during Kristallnacht.  We were so honored to have him come and share his experience with us…art will of course continue next week!    I hope everyone has a lovely 3-day weekend!  Shabbat shalom!

Projects in Progress

The Donut Club

Inspiration and ideas can come from anywhere, even through a deep supply closet cleaning.  This past week, while organizing my supply closet, I came across a package of rigid wrap and then all of a sudden it hit me!  We will create paper mache donuts during clubs!  Clubs is a weekly session our junior high students get to take unique classes such as yoga, cooking class, and Art!  🙂

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Students were shown how to create the base of the donut by twisting and wrapping paper around their hand, followed by wrapping their donut shape with masking tape.

Next week will wrap our donuts with the rigid tape to make them extra sturdy!  Stay tuned!


Self-Portraits

In our regular art classes, 6th and 7th grades are currently working on self-portraits.  Students viewed a slideshow of several famous artists that are known for their self portraits: Van Gogh, Picasso, and my personal favorite: Frida Kahlo.

I showed the students how to use this awesome site called blockposters.com.  We uploaded our pictures onto the site and it broke our photos up into larger scale print which we printed out.  Next, students were shown how to use carbon paper and we traced our photos onto a large sheet of white paper.  Check out our progress so far!  They are looking pretty cool…

Next week students will add words that describe their personality to fill the background.


4A Weavings

I rotated the weaving project between the two 4th grade classes.  And this week it is now 4A’s turn to weave.  They are doing a fantastic job so far.  I also created some threading “needles” out of cardboard to help with the process.

Check out some of the finished results from 4B!

Mad about Matisse

It’s no secret….I am absolutely MAD about MATISSE.  I have probably mentioned my love of Matisse in several blogs, so I will spare you all the details, but I still have to share this darling, darling project I am doing with Kindergarten through 2nd grade.  Parents: this project is definitely getting hung on the fridge, somewhere, anywhere!

As you might recall, I taught the students how to create one of Matisse’s most famous designs a couple of weeks ago.

Well this week we are using those prints and creating a Still Life of a table with a vases of flowers.  Everything is patterned: Henri Matisse-Style!

We cut out a table, and then we cut out a vase.  We glued the vase onto the center of our “table”.  I guided the students into creating a variety of Matisse designs on the vase and wall paper. We finished by adding flowers of course!

Check out our beautiful results!!

STUNNING!!

The Art Classroom Surprise is Announced & Maccabia!

Good News Galore Ya’ll!!  So I can finally share the surprise that I had mentioned a couple blogs ago.  Let me preface this by giving a HUGE, MASSIVEThank Youuuu” to the Hillel Torah PTA for sponsoring this AMAZING addition to the art classroom.  You ladies are fabulous and I just can’t thank you enough for this!  I’d also like to thank our business administrator Dov Shandalov who assisted in making this process run smoothly (it wasn’t easy!) and Rivka Varnai for helping this idea come to fruition!  Our students are about to benefit tremendously and I know without a doubt – they are going to love every second of this new experience.  Thank you, thank you!   So are you all ready for the surprise???

Hillel Torah now has it’s very own KILN!!!!

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For those of you that don’t know what a Kiln is: it is essentially an oven for baking ceramics.  This is super fantastic for students of all ages as this now gives our kids the opportunity to work with clay, texture, and bring a 3-Dimensional element to our art program.  I anticipate the clay portion of art to begin around Spring and go through summer break.  How exciting!!  Am I right??  Thank you again PTA!


Ok so this past Monday I went to the Nursery school to visit my Little Littles and if you have children at the Nursery School, then I’m sure you might have seen these displayed.  I taught the Little Ones about the fabulous artist that is Roy Lichtenstein.

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We talked about his use of Primary colors and dots.  And THENNNN we used our OWN face to create a Roy Lichtenstein inspired work of art!


Last thing I will talk about in this week’s blog is dun dun dunnnnnn: MACCABIA!

I am assisting the students in creating their banners for the competition portion of MACCABIA.  My role is one of guidance.  These kids have been so amazingly motivated and independent: I am so excited to see the finished products!

The Art Buffet

This week has been jam packed with so many different art projects, that I am referring to it as the Art Buffet.  And the title is actually very fitting for the first project I am going to introduce you to:

Now Presenting: My Favorite Family Meal

Students in 5th grade were asked to write about their favorite family meal in their sketchbooks.  They had to go into detail with it: who makes it, how often do they get to eat it, what’s in it, how does it taste, how is made, etc.  After the written description they had to draw a picture of it and THEN they were asked to create a paper collage of the meal.  They came out fantastic, and I was super appreciative of students adding details such as silverware, ice cubes, spices, etc.  It’s the little things that make all the difference in a masterpiece 😉


Next up: Weaving with 3rd Grade

I introduced 3rd and 4th graders to the wonderful world of weaving.  This was a very in depth process and both grades rose to the challenge.  They learned how to thread a loom and how to weave and switch colors.  They got really into it: the concentration levels were through the roof!


Under the Sea Value Studies & Perspective with 4th Grade

I know….I know….I love under the sea stuff….this will be the last ocean inspired project for a while!  I promise.  Anyhoo, I taught 4th grade how to paint using value with watercolor.  This week they added sea creatures using perspective.  I asked them to pretend they’re at the bottom of the ocean and they had to draw large and small fish in relation to how close they were to them aka Perspective!


Matisse with Kindergarten

Not only do I love under the sea creatures: I also love the artist Henri Matisse!  Kindergarten learned about the wonderful artist Matisse and his use of bright colors and patterns.  I taught them how to illustrate one of his most famous patterns too!

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All in all: a very lovely week full of variety!

I Have a Dream…

In honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, I asked my 3rd grade class to create artwork based on their own dreams.  I asked the students to trace their own hand and I showed them how to add some more realistic features, such as fingernails and knuckles.

I then had the kids create a dream bubble and asked them to illustrate their own dreams inside the bubble.  I left it pretty open ended.  I encouraged them to think of dreams that are good for mankind, but if that was not their cup of tea, then they were more than welcome to use their own ideas.  This of course made for some hilarious results as well as some super sweet and endearing ones.

Please take a look at what we created this past week.

 


 

6th and 8th Grade are continuing with their tessellation artwork and they are turning out SO cool!

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Cara Rosenburg is currently working on a moose tessellation!  AMAZING!!  The final results should be ready by next week so stay tuned!!

Welcome to 2017!

2017 is looking very promising!  The Art room is about to have a wonderful new addition to the program in the next couple months and I’d like to keep it a little secret until it’s officially here.  The suspense shouldn’t last too long because I am anticipating our new addition in a few weeks: so bear with me!

This week I got to visit the “Little Littles”, as I call them, at the Nursery school.  My trip up to the North Woods of Wisconsin over Winter Break (which was FULL of snow), inspired me to create a snowman project for my Nursery school students.  Although we didn’t have snow at the time, ya’ll know it’s just a matter of time before we do!  This is winter in Chicago we’re talking about over here!

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I asked the Little Littles to arrange their snowmen in the “correct order” smallest circle to biggest and they had to glue them down.  We added hats, scarves, eyes, carrot nose, and arms.

We finished by adding Snow with white paint all around the snowman for an extra wintery effect!

This project had a variety of elements: cutting and using scissors for the 4 year olds, arranging by size, gluing, assembling, and painting.  It was all in all, a very good project for the age group with super cute results!


….Meanwhile back in the main building… 

6th & 8th grade are learning about M.C. Escher and tessellations!

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I taught the students how to make their own tessellations and I’ve got to say: they got so into it you could hear a pin drop in the classroom.  They were amazed at the fact that they were able to create something that could fit perfectly from all directions.

They will get to figure what their tessellations resemble next week!

William Wegman, Paper Weaving and Collage Galore!

We are back from yet another break and ready to get back into action…that is until we break again on December 23rd 🙂 !  My kindergarten students have been watching one of my FAVORITE art videos of all time: William Wegman’s alphabet soup!

The kids get such a kick out it because, C’mon!  …It’s dog heads on human bodies!!  The students were provided with dog heads and asked to illustrate a human body underneath it.


 

In 6th grade we have been working on creative collages.  I was really inspired by these images and thought it would be cool to do a project inspired by them.

I provided the 6th grade students with animal eyes.  They had the option of either owl or alligator eyes…and they were asked to create a collaged version of their animal.

This one was created by Emma Felix!

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And to end this weeks recap: 1st-3rd have been working on paper weavings.  This is really a lovely, tactile project that involves eye-hand coordination, and pattern identification A.K.A. GREAT project for little ones!!

They were so into it!  Awesome week boys and girls!  #SoProud