Chinese Painted Fans & Dancing

I am always amazed at the level of joy and engagement the exploration of the Chinese New Years brings to the classroom.  It is richly embedded with academic learning (for example see Chinese Counting Set ) in a way that addresses multiple learning styles and needs.  Fan dancing is another great math activity. I am […]

The Shape Robots

This is a great project for practicing the major lines in handwriting.  This robot is constructed using shapes and lines.  This helps develop visual perceptual skills, eye-hand coordination, and fine motor control.  I think it is very important to develop a climate of safety in drawing.  Each child will have their own level of capacity.  […]

Flower Study

One of the last big projects I did with the children this year was a flower study.  We looked at the work of Georgia O’Keefe and how she painted her flowers to fill the entire canvas.  We noted three things that Georgia O’Keefe did: She painted the flowers to the edges of the canvas. She […]

Just a Sprinkle of Salt. . .

It is the fourth day of school tomorrow and I am crazy busy!  So I am posting more photos from summer art camp.  These turned out so lovely in person.  The iphone photos do not do them justice!  I had the children draw with sharpies, paint and then sprinkle salt on the wet paint.  The […]

Noodle Doodles

Molly, one of the artists I worked with last week, did a classic activity but gave it a new name!!  Noodle Doodles.  The children loved the name as much as the activity.  Step One: With a crayon draw a large doodle with swirling moves.  Step Two:  Paint in the doodles with noodles of color!

Drip Painting

Step One:  Brush water over your whole paper!  Lots of water! Step Two:  Using droppers, drip paint on to the wet paper.  (primary colors)

Give Me Five!

Another cute idea from Ms. Aubree.  I wanted to have the children watercolor a small art piece for the front of their sketch pads.  In the morning class I had the children make abstract shapes with a sharpie and then watercolor. Not bad – they turned out very nicely.  In the afternoon class, I asked […]

Painted Paper Fish

I start this project by having each child make a “bubble painted” paper (technique is posted in painting techniques).  This time because of time constraints,  I prepared the painted paper but they could do that as well. (To make the painted paper in a very quick and easy way I just paint the top of […]

It’s Bubbly Print Making!

This makes a great “ocean” (water) background for painted paper collages (make fishes out of painted paper).  It is super easy and  I do have some very helpful hints to make it a sure fire success.  I video taped the process of making a bubble print – for visual learners like myself (if I see […]

Drawing Tiki Masks

It has been so crazy with my daughter in the hospital and trying to get things done at work.  I did not capture the completed tiki masks.  Just looking at their drawings – you can imagine – they were so cute.  What you need:  white cardstock, sharpies, watercolors  Step One:  Draw two circles for the […]

How to Draw the Cat in the Hat

What you will need:  sharpies, red markers, white cardstock. Step 1:  Draw a circle. Step 2:  Draw a straight line on top of the circle.  Make it into a thin rectangle. Step 3:  Draw a rectangle on top of this. Step 4:  Draw the stripes on the hat. Step 5:  Draw two small triangles for […]

How to Draw a King and Queen

Here are very simple instructions for children to draw a King and a Queen. Step One:  We begin with the Queen.  Begin with a horizon line at bottom of page.  Draw a “U” shape for the face.   Step Two:  Draw a straight line across the top of the U.  Draw a zigzag line to […]

How to Draw a Castle

There is something about drawing a castle that really touches a deep place in the hearts of children.  When I taught four year olds – they loved it as much as the kindergarteners.  Something about it.    Another important point is it is super easy.  Here are the simple steps to drawing a castle: I […]

How to Draw a Panda Bear

This drawing project looks great using just black and green watercolors.  I just love how unique and individual each child’s drawing turns out. What you will need:  Sharpies, white cardstock, black and green watercolors (I used a liquid concentrate). How to draw a simple panda bear: Draw a medium sized circle at the top of […]

How to Draw a Bird

I think it is such an important skill to teach children how to draw.  It develops so many critical skills for learning – eye/hand coordination, dexterity, spatial perception, understanding of basic shapes and lines, the ability to observe as a means of knowledge – to name a few. All you need is enough black sharpies […]

How to Draw an Elf

This week we are inside the wonderful tale of the Elves and the Shoemaker.  I love teaching the children how to draw an elf.  It is easy and the results endearing!  I am including my state standards at the bottom of this post that this activity directly addresses.  This activity is reinforces the understanding of […]

Watercolor Magic – Waxed Paper!

  What you will need:  watercolor paper, watercolors, brushes and waxed paper. Step One: Place a watercolor wash on the paper. Step Two: While paint is still wet, cover it with the wax paper.  Experiment with moving the wax paper to create texture. Step Three:  Remove waxed paper after painting has dried.

Watercolor Magic – Salt!

  Materials Needed:  watercolor paper, watercolors, brushes, and table salt.  You can use a variety of salts to see the effects like fresh ground salt, rock salt and coarse sea salt. Step One: Apply a wash of color over the paper surface. Step Two:  Sprinkle salt into the wet paint and let it dry completely. […]

Watercolor Magic – Rice!

Materials:  Rice, watercolor paper, watercolors. Step One:  Lay a watercolor wash on the paper surface. Step Two: While paint is still wet, drop rice on the paint and leave it there until dry. Step Three:  Brush off the rice. Detail of texture

Watercolor Magic – Plastic Wrap!

Every winter I provide a special painted paper opportunity in my classroom.  During free choice the children can create the featured painted paper.  They make one for the community box and one for themselves.  We use a variety of colors and textures.  I am going to start with watercolor and share my favorites!  Everyday this […]