Thursday, September 29, 2011

The Year So Far: First Grade

First grade artists have been exploring line and shape. To start the year, we explored line with monoprinting. This is one of my favorite activities to do with the students. We first discussed all of the different kinds of lines we could make. Students then learned about basic printmaking. They used a tray for a plate and painted on a variety of lines. To make the print, they put a piece of paper on top of the tray and burnished with their hands to transfer their image from the plate to the paper. Each student created five prints and it was a ton of fun.

The following class, we read Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak. Because the students were so familiar with this book, we focused on looking at the illustrations with "artist's eyes." We discussed that this means we look closely and notice all of the details that the artist included. The students noticed how Sendak created wild things with different textures (fur, scales...) using different types of lines.

from Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak

We then looked back at our monoprints. We noticed how many of them looked like fur or scales, wavy hair or spots. Using these prints and additional paper for details, first grade artists created their own wild things.

We learned how artists begin a collage with the large, basic shapes before moving on to the small details.

Awesome work first graders! We will continue our exploration of shape and collage for the next few weeks.

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