Monday, February 23, 2015

Snowflake Watercolors

Like so many of us, we've definitely experienced our fair share of frosty weather this winter! Have you taken a moment to notice the shimmery snow crystals?  SJS Second graders have! 
We began by oohing and aahing over magical photographs in the book, The Secret Life of a Snowflake and then viewing  snow crystals on our Smart board.  It was exciting for the kids to see what snow flakes REALLY look like under a microscope. (Pretty cool for me, too!)  

Children discovered many geometric shapes hidden inside the overall design, and learned that every snow crystal begins as a hexagon. We were able to see lines of symmetry, too. 

It was time to make some art!
Children received a square white paper pre-drawn with six evenly spaced pencil lines radiating from the center. Using a black crayon, they learned to draw a geometric shape on one line, rotate their paper to the next line and repeat the shape again and again, until all six lines were complete.   Draw, rotate, draw, rotate, draw, rotate...  
They even learned a new art vocabulary word: radial.  Kids added new shapes until their beautiful radial design was complete. 
Frosty snowflakes call for cool, "frosty" colors so we naturally chose cool colors for the crayon resist painting.  I demonstrated how to paint with different values of the same color and stressed keeping colors symmetrical, also.  Some children sprinkled a tiny bit of salt crystals over the wet watercolor as a finishing touch. 
Art, science, math... magical!

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