In progress graffiti painting
Right now my 8th graders are working on graffiti-style paintings on canvas board using the Six Pillars of Character from Characer Counts as the inspiration. I received a grant for this earlier this year which including bring a graffiti artist to my school for two days and buying materials and resources for the project. Can I just tell you that MIDDLE SCHOOL STUDENTS LOVE GRAFFITI STYLE. If you have stumbled upon this blog, please read that sentence again- I speak the truth. When TQueen came to my school, you would have thought a rock star was in the art room. (Coincidentally, she does in fact ROCK!) I had students lined up outside my classroom in between classes and at the end of the day that I don't even teach. It was quite the event!
The kids spent time sketching out their designs on the canvas ans started painting the other week. I bought table easels with the grant and the first time I looked around my classroom and saw my students working at easels- I felt a little teary-eyed. Lame? Yeah, maybe. But not every student gets to paint at an easel, it just takes the project to another level. And to see them so engaged in the style...done. They love it. If you are anywhere in the Palm Beach area and you are interested in bringing TQueen to your school, please contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org). I would be happy to share her contact info as well as my grant to help you get started.
I will post pics of some of the finished pieces. We have about another week of 'regular painting'...then we will have a experimental paint week where we use spray bottles, sponges and straws to give the canvases some more life. I am going to be brave and let my 8th graders 'action paint' alla Jackson Pollock and the Abstract Expressionists...on their canvases and on a PARENT APPROVED t-shirt....stay tuned!
Another project that is a 'fan favorite' would be creating Egyptian Canopic Jars. I am working on these right now with my 6th graders and they love it. The way that I set my program up, 6th grade is the year that the students focus on art across culture, time and place. We travel the world in our art time machine without ever leaving the art room. After spending some time in Mexico, China, Japan and India...we are kickin' it old skool, Ancient Egyptian-style! I found a great lesson of the Princetonol web site from a teacher in NV (click here to view to lesson) and I modified it. Last year I did this lesson and we used paper mache for the whole piece, which worked fine. Since the school year is quickly ending I did not want to have to worry about dry time, so I opted for model magic heads atop their Pringles cans. We covered the cans with brown tape, it was so easy for the kids to just draw their hieroglyphs right on the tape. They are painting these now, pictures soon!