Third Grade – 3D App Icons

This past quarter I had the opportunity to have 1st, 3rd, and 4th graders in my room. Remember the giant level in Super Mario Brothers 3? Yeah, that’s what my room is like to the wee kiddos. Last year I had 5th graders working on this project with a lot of success, and they really connected …

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Trajan’s Column: Ancient Roman relief Sculpture (Work in Progress)

One of the great things about teaching art is being able to use other content areas for inspiration. Not only do students learn about various functions of art (storytelling, record keeping, etc), but I also get to learn; in this case, ancient Roman history. Trajan’s Column is a Roman triumphal column in Rome, Italy, that commemorates …

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Design Thinking with Clay – Smarter Interior Design

Clay is my absolute favorite medium to work in, and usually my students’ favorite, as it allows for quite a bit of creative freedom. It’s also a great tie-in with science and geology by introducing the firing process from greenware to glazeware, and the various types of clay.  Of all media, clay is the best material to literally see …

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QR Code Self Portraits

Nothing inspires a love/hate relationship between drawing technique and the young artist than the self portrait–a staple of any drawing class. There’s very little middle ground when producing a self portrait, at best a mirror image of the artist, at worst a caricature of a distant cousin. I was inspired by a video I saw …

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Using thinking maps in art

This year I have been using thinking maps as introductory exercises to our projects in addition to thumbnail sketches. Having students create these before sketching shows me a deeper understanding of concepts in addition to sketches. I limit thumbnail sketches to 5-10 minutes each (at least 3 sketches) so students focus on getting ideas down …

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