Sunday, October 23, 2011

Kindergarten Observational Drawing Beginnings

I cannot express how important drawing from observation is at every age. With observational drawing, children learn to really look and to express their interactions with objects. Nancy Smith's Observation Drawing with Children is an excellent resource for teachers and parents interested in developing a child's looking and drawing skills.

I love the first time we explore looking and drawing in kindergarten. Students are sometimes nervous about getting drawings to look just like their subject, but instead we focus on looking at and including as many details as we can. For our first observational drawing experience, we looked closely at leaves. First, we used our sense of touch to explore a leaf in the mystery box. Students were not told what was inside before this experience, so they had to feel the leaf and share with the class what they noticed with their hands. Next, students looked closely at the shape of the leaf. We also listed all of the details we saw on the leaf--veins, holes, spots, etc. After this long investigation, students were asked to choose one leaf and went back to their table to draw it.

In the same class period (Kindergarten artists work FAST!), we came back to the rug and talked about warm and cool colors. Students noticed that warm colors remind us of things that are hot and cool colors remind us of things that are cold. After reviewing the watercolor painting procedure, students went back to their drawings and added color. They were directed to use warm colors inside the leaf and cool colors on the outside. They did a fantastic job!

More on Digication. (You have to see these!)

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