Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Art Lesson with Older Kids: Button Paintings

I had all 3 "older" kids (5-7 year olds) this week for art class. This was our project...a button painting (like the one I did here).

(The 2 with no names at the top-lefthand corner are mine). i think Ava's (in the bottom right) may be my favorite. (Shhh!...don't tell the kids I said that! I'm not supposed to pick favorites!) It's not as squared-up and structured as my example and like the boys' were...the buttons are kind of willy-nilly...but that may be what makes me like it. The buttons look like they're all spilled out across a table. I may do one myself like that. I'm really liking this project and have been inspired to do a couple ATC's/ACEO's using watercolors and the stamps.

It is interesting to now see the dynamic of having 3 kids in the class. I'm starting to see the differences in how the kids work. One follows directions well and finishes the steps quicker than the others, but is very talkative and easily distracted. One is quiet and very focused, but doesn't always follow the specific directions I give, whether they weren't listening or just forgot. And one has an active imagination and gets focused on making up stories of what they're drawing and enjoys drawing little details, and in their excitement, sometimes forgets what the original directions were. They all have their strengths and weaknesses, but they all did very well. And I didn't mind the kids who didn't follow the directions exactly, because their work turned out well anyway. And the bottom line is about having fun, right? (well, the point of the art CLASS is learning too) I have to walk a fine line between having expectations, directions, structure, and rules...but at the same time, reassuring them that mistakes are okay and that sometimes mistakes make a piece of art turn out even better. (I got a lot of "I can't make a perfect circle!"...even after I said that their circles didn't have to be perfect! LOL.)

For the main project, I showed them my example and told them to make 5 circles with the watercolors, in whatever colors they wanted. After the watercolors dried, I had them use my Button stamp to stamp the button design onto the circles. The I had them use alphabet stamps to write their names on their papers...which I thought looked pretty cool with the overall design.

I originally had planned this project for the little kids, due to its simplicity and how it looks cool no matter what. But then I thought the older kids would enjoy it as well! (and they did!)

While we let the watercolors dry, they worked on some new How-To-Draw worksheets I'd made. One for how to draw a boy, one for how to draw a girl.

They were all very quiet and focused while they were drawing...

I have to be prepared for what to do if a kid finishes before the rest. I've debated between letting them go to the next step of the project or having them wait for the other kids to finish. As of now, I've been having them wait, but giving them scrap paper and letting them doodle until the rest of the kids are ready for the next step. (any art teachers out there have some advice for me?)


Melissa said...

Isn't it fun to see how directions are interpreted? I'm always amazed...

Love what you are doing with your students!

Vickie @ In My Head Studios said...

This looks so fun! I want to come play at art school!

Art Activities said...

Lovely paintings and awesome pictures. The kids are having great fun.