Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Logo Design

What's special about Saint Jude School?  How do we communicate that visually? Sixth grade is working to develop our own SJS version of a "Google Doodle".  Here's some of the finished designs- stay tuned for more to come! 

Expressing the Mercy Spirit! 

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Life of a Snowflake

I've been inspired by a captivating book offered by our school book fair last year.  It's titled, The Secret Life of a Snowflake: An Up Close Look at the Art and Science of Snowflakes by Kenneth Libbrecht.  Wow!  Filled with gorgeous photographs and interesting facts about snow crystals, it's a perfect book for both children and adults. 
           A few classes just learned about the science of a snowflake and how to cut six-pointed snowflakes, as they're found in nature. In preparing for this lesson, I assembled some resources here and thought you might find them helpful, too.  These include a step by step tutorial on how to cut a six pointed design, as well as an interactive "Make your own snowflake" game!  Families, this can be a fun home activity, too. 
Happy designing! 

(Sorry, I forgot to take pictures and will add some soon! )

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Snowman at Night

Have you ever read the book, Snowman at Night, by Carolyn Buehner? It's a delightful, imaginative, beautifully illustrated story.  Fifth graders read the story as inspiration to create a snow person of their own.  (They heard my pet peeve too: why not a snow woman? Or a snow girl? )

We learned how to create the illusion of form on a flat surface by using light and shadow. Who knew that we could draw blue or purple snow and have the picture look realistic ? We looked at the direction of cast shadows and observed their shapes. Children seemed to really enjoy the process of blending pastels. 
As you can see, the results are pure magic!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Exploring Cave Art

Thousands of years ago, people drew on walls deep inside caves. 
Kindergarten students turned off the lights and went spelunking (cave exploring) in the Saint Jude Art studio .....until we discovered the caves of Lascaux, France!  Click here to see the virtual tour we took on our SmartBoard.

For this lesson, children sponge painted textured backgrounds that felt rough.
With oil pastels, they observed animals found in cave drawings and drew them on the textured surface. Then, I spray painted their hands to create a stenciled handprint- just like cave artists made.   Children also tried drawing prehistoric animals on the cave ceiling and discovered it was lots of fun, but not so easy! 

Monday, January 7, 2013

Ornaments in Light and Shadow

Here's a lesson that I didn't have a chance to post, but wanted to share:

Just in time for Christmas, Fourth Graders produced these lovely ornaments!
They folded a colorful paper, designed half of an ornament shape, and cut it out using their symmetry knowledge.  Now, how to make it appear dimensional? Add light, shadow,and highlights, of course! 

Students used white chalk pastel, vine charcoal and a bit of glitter for that sparkling touch! 

Peace on earth and goodwill to all.

Gargoyle Sculptures

Anytime our students have the opportunity to sculpt with clay, pure joy can be felt.  "Yessss!!!!!", kids exclaim!  You see, we don't have a kiln here at SJS, and we compensate by using plasticine (modeling clay) and many other materials to create three-dimensional art works. 

Second graders began the New Year by taking a closer look at Gothic and Renaissance architecture- and an even closer look at the sculptures adorning it.  When a box of air-dry clay appeared, they could barely contain their excitement!  So tactile, so direct, so immediate. Create! 

These are "practice" gargoyles. We learned to "score" clay to attach pieces,  and to create a sculpture-in-the-round that's sturdy enough to stand on it's own. Stay tuned for the real deal, coming soon to a computer near you!