GETTING READY FOR SCHOOL 2014

          rising moon 1lWatch for the next Supermoon on September 7th

Now that we have our Grade Galleries in place, I’m hoping that the images in the galleries make it easier for you to decide which projects are right for your class. When I designated the projects to grades I put the easiest ones in the First Grade Gallery and the ones I considered the most difficult in the Sixth Grade Gallery. You know your students better than anyone else, so check out all the galleries, no matter what the grade, and pick out the ones that your students will enjoy.

I’d like to introduce a new gallery listing, the Squidoo Crafts Gallery. The crafts in this gallery were developed and made by me. The craft projects can be used either in the classroom or as items to decorate the classroom. Some of the items could be made as gifts, and there are some that you may want for personal use. Check out the “Squidoo Crafts Gallery” and pin the crafts that you want to do.

If you have a second, leave a comment.  I’d love to hear from you!

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ABSTRACT DANDELION FIELD

abstract dandelions 4eI saw an acrylic painting, called “Abstract Dandelion,” by an artist who sells her paintings on an Etsy site at M.Schöneberg. This painting made me wonder what everyday item could be used to make the finely grouped lines needed to paint the dandelion seed head. Although it would be nice to be able to copy each tiny seed parachutes that make up the seed head, there just isn’t time in an hour art class. Since abstract means that it doesn’t really exist, but gives an idea of what we are trying to convey, I think my solution for painting a dandelion fits the “abstract” distinction.  Although any class can  make this art,  you’ll find the instructions for this project, “Abstract Dandelions,”  in the 5th Grade Gallery in the sidebar.

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SQUIDOO CRAFTS GALLERY

gallery-paper mache clay snowmen, bird and chickI’ve mentioned before that I write articles on Squidoo, and at times make and include tutorials for crafts.  Since some of these crafts would make great classroom art projects, I’ve set up a gallery for them.

If you haven’t made any projects using paper mache clay yet, give it a try.  I’ve had so much fun with this stuff, that so far I’ve made turkeys, Santas, snowmen, birds, chickens and a cutie cat that now lives in the school library.  You’ll find the Paper Mache Clay Snowmen, Bird and Chick,  show at the left, and a bunch more fun project under the SQUIDOO CRAFTS GALLERY in the sidebar.

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NATIVE AMERICAN MASK

native american masks-5The Native American used masks as part of their religious ceremonies, as part of ceremonial costumes, for entertainment or for medicinal purposes. The masks were often made to represent the spirits of animals, and the Pacific Northwest Indians believed that by wearing the mask, they were able to share some of the spirit’s powers. The powers they hoped to share were of strength, wisdom and purpose. The masks were constructed of wood from trees available, and the Indians made their own paints from plants.

 You can find the instructions for this project, Native American Ceremonial Masks in the 4th Grade Gallery in the sidebar.

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DANCING FIREFLIES

fireflies1Have you ever admired dancing fireflies on a dark summer night? You can almost hear the music as they swoop and circle carrying their little sparkling lanterns. While some of the blinking lights seem to stand still, others wildly dart around in a frenzy of movement. One of my treasured summer memories is of my siblings and me dashing around trying to catch fireflies. I remember being so disappointed to find that the firefly, in hand, is a very plain and unattractive bug. But when the firefly is allowed to fly free to display it’s flashing little lanterns, it is a magical sight to behold.                                                           Enjoy this YouTube video with your class:  In a Flash: Firefly Communication

Find this project, Dance of the Firefly, in the 1st Grade Project Gallery in the sidebar.

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SUPER, SPECTACULAR SUPERMOON

rising moon 1lIf you haven’t yet seen a supermoon, you’ve missed out on a super, spectacular sight.  An astrologer, Richard Nolle, named the supermoon over 30 years ago, but it’s  been only the last few years that this name for perigee has been used  to describe the full moon. This art project is our tribute to this outstanding sight.

A supermoon is a full moon at its closest approach to the Earth. The average distance, as the moon nears the Earth each month, is about 238,000 miles. During a supermoon, the distance becomes less than 224,851 miles. The supermoon appears bigger and brighter than an ordinary full moon.   The directions for this project, Spectacular Supermoon, is found in the 5th Grade Gallery in the sidebar.  Click on the image above for a full view of the picture.

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ABORIGINAL DOT ART JARS

dot painted jars EAustralian Aboriginal dot art styles range from exceedingly neat work to overlapping, unstructured works. The sizes of dots range from tiny dots randomly applied in an area to give a stippled effect to dots placed so close together that they appear to be a line or almost fill in an area with solid color.  The Aborigine apply the dots using a paint brush, very thin sticks to make minute dots, or larger sticks to make large dots. To paint our Aboriginal Art Jars we use Q-tips to apply the dots. Not only are Q-tips relatively inexpensive but the size, of the dots made, works well. Find the instructions for making the project, Aboriginal Art Jars, under the 6TH GRADE PROJECT GALLERY in the sidebar.

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THOROUGHLY MODERN MATTISE

modern matisse 12How do you suppose the “Goldfish” painting of Henri Matisse would look if he were painting it in the year 2014? Goldfish were a new craze in Europe in Henri Matisses’ time, and they became kind of an obsession with him for awhile. He painted his work of art called “Goldfish” in 1912. He has nine paintings that include goldfish in them. Probably the most outstanding thing about his Goldfish painting is the bright orange color of the fish. They contrast beautifully with the bright greens of the plant leaves and the subtle pinks in the flowers and wallpaper. Using Henri Matisse’s painting as a starting point, we’ve changed the fish to tropical fish, instead of goldfish, and put them in a modern fishbowl.   You’ll find the tutorial for this project, Modern Mattise, in the 1st Grade Gallery in the sidebar.

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NATIVE AMERICAN SHIELD

indian shield 16Although the Native American war shield and the medicine shield looked similar, they had distinctively different uses. The war shield was thicker and heavier and was used to deflect arrows or spears. The medicine shield was also taken along in battle, but they were meant to give spiritual protection.   The war shields were said to be between 20-24 inches in diameter, but our version of the war shield is the width of a Styrofoam paper dinner plate.    You’ll find the tutorial for this project, Native American War or Medicine Shield, in the 3rd Grade Gallery in the sidebar.

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