Tag Archives: 8th grade

Art – Awkward School Pictures

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Remember those awkward school photos in the 80’s?

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Well, obviously my 8th/9th graders don’t, and as we were making these, a friend of mine gave me the idea to turn this surrealism lesson into the laser beam pictures, and thus, “Awkward School Pictures” was born.  The kids had a great time finding their animal head and adding the Zen tangle-styled clothing, and they used markers and colored pencils.  The background laser beams were done with oil pastels watercolor.  Fun stuff!

Art – Ojos de Dios

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In my (now 2) Wednesday classes, the kids made their own ojo de Dios:  Eye of God.  My Wednesday classes are a mix of mature 6th-graders through high school.

I let them choose from two different styles:  the regular 4-sided ojo, or the complex 8-sided one.  The 8-sided ojos look more like mandalas when they get done, but they’re still classified as traditional ojos.  Interestingly, the 4-sided ones took only a LITTLE bit of less time to complete than the 8-sided ojos.  The students had a great time making them, and I love how they all came out so different!  The key is to offer a LOT of different colors of yarn to allow for them to really get creative!

Here’s my sample I showed the kids.  I had it out a couple of weeks before we did the project, and the students were perfectly teased and salivating to start!  They didn’t believe they were going to be able to make them!

Schooled in Love:  Ojos de Dios

Here are a few in-progress shots:

And the beautiful results!

Art – Fish, Fish, and more Fish

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In an effort to get caught up, I’m posting three different projects for this one.  Whew!

The first set is from my (last year’s) 3rd/4th graders:  Jellyfish.  First, they drew out their jellyfish very lightly, and then covered it in glue.  While the glue was still wet, they dripped watercolors and let it bleed.  Once the glue was dry, they added the watercolor background and used saran wrap to make it fractal.

This next set was created by my (then) 5th/6th graders.  We were practicing analogous colors.

The final set is from my (then) 7th/8th graders.  The challenge was to have at least one partially behind another, and at least one partially off the page.  I found some free coloring pages and printed them off for the kids to use and swap out.  They were able to trace whichever fishes they liked.  Then, they used oil pastels to make the fishes hyper-colorful.  Finally, they used watercolor to fill in any remaining fish parts as well as the background water.

Art – Makin’ Monsters

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I try to do at east one sculpture during the year with each class.  Sometimes it’s plaster; sometimes it’s wire, and sometimes it’s paper mache.  This was the year of paper mache for sure!  As the kids get older, they enjoy challenges, so I try to make each year a little harder than the last.  For my 7th/8th grade class, the challenge was to make a monster that was 2 feet tall, and could stand without support.

The first step was to draw out their monster.  I think this was the most difficult step of all!  I asked them to not make a monster that’s been “used” before, such as in movies or even other projects.  We talked about structure, and what types of things (legs, tails, etc.) a monster could have to act as sneaky supports.  The monster also had to have eyes and a mouth.  Looking back, I should have added a width limit, because some of these monsters got REALLY wide!  As in almost 4 feet!  Whoops…

The first thing was to start building the parts of the monster out of nothing but newspaper, masking tape and foil.  This also lent a challenge to the students.

Once the monster parts were built, they were put together and adjusted to be able to stand up.  Some designs only had two legs starting out, but quickly went to three legs or two legs and a tail to keep the balance.

Schooled in Love:  Makin' Monsters

After the monsters were assembled and structurally sound, the students added 3 layers of paper mache.  Some of the kids are finally at age where they’re really paying attention to the smoothness of the final product, and they think about this as they go.  It’s good to see them want to be proud of their work!  Some monsters were significantly bigger than others, so when the students with smaller monsters got finished, they helped out with the larger ones.  Teamwork!

Schooled in Love:  Makin' Monsters

Once the three layers were applied and dried, the next step was to add the primer.  I make my own using glue and white acrylic paint.

Schooled in Love:  Makin' Monsters

Once everything was nice and white, it was time to paint them.  This project took a long time, but the end result was work it.  Here are the completed monsters at the show:

Art – Superhero Grid Drawings

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Grid drawings are a fun way to challenge even my artistically-minded students.  It forces them to think linearly instead of just drawing whatever they think of.  For the ones who automatically think linearly, they get a chance to really shine because this project, if done correctly, yields beautiful results!  It makes everyone look like a pro!

I found these pre-gridded super heroes, which made this project 100% easier than coming up with the examples myself!

Once the students picked out their favorite superhero, they drew a grid with 1″ spaces.  They didn’t draw the super heroes out in pencil first – this was straight-up Sharpie!  Once they were done, they erased the grid, and viola!

Art – The 2015 Art Show

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I know, I know… It’s the end of July and I’m STILL posting for the school year.  But it is what it is.

We had our art show at the St. Sabina Gym this year.  A HUGE thank-you to the Altar Society for reserving the gym.  This helped IMMENSLY with the cost.  Remember – we’re a co-op, and we don’t have the luxury of tax-paid gyms or large spaces (or supplies, paper, tables, chairs, etc.).  Everything we do comes out of pocket or from donations.  The Altar Society was able to use our art show to have a bake sale and raise money, and we were able to scratch each other’s backs this way.

We started setting up about 9:00 on the morning of May 8th.  The show was scheduled to begin later that day at 6:30pm, and it was time to rock and roll.  Let me say this up front:  I could NOT have done this without the help of the adults and students who came in.  Some stayed a couple of hours, and others stayed for most of the day.  They were a HUGE HELP!

This next year’s show is schedule for April 29th.  It’s a little earlier in the year, but it seems the beginning of May is difficult for most families because of graduation, soccer nationals, and other end-of-the-year things.  Having it a week or so earlier should help ease that.  We’ve also reserved the day before to start the set-up.  I think this will help with the stress-overdrive that happens about 3 hours before the show opens, when we’re all scrambling to get things put up.  If I can get the pillars and panels set up as well as the lay-out for the projects done the night before, we can start hanging things a LOT earlier.

Enough talking!  On to the show…

But first!  Thank-you to my hubby of 20 {fabulous} years for taking all these pictures AND taking the day off to help set up!  I love you, Chris!

This first set is the overall view of the show.  We added another set of panels this year and had four pillars.  We also utilized the walls.  We had two activity tables:  the draw-what-you-want table with kraft paper, and the make-a-dot table.  Both were a hit!

Here’s the first pillar:

This next set is the pictures that were on the perimeter walls of the gym.

Here’s a our “Make-A-Dot” station.  Apparently the “M” got put in the wrong place.  Maybe next year…

The 7th/8th grade woven circles looked beautifully placed here.  It was SUCH a great idea from one of the helpers, because I couldn’t get them to hang on a panel.

Here are the 5th/6th grade Day of the Dead skulls:

The first panel set:

I just love the way the volunteer arranged these fish paintings made by my 7th/8th graders!

The monsters, made by my 7th/8th graders:

The second panel set:

The high school Trophy Animal Heads:

The second pillar:

The Greek vases, made by my 5th/6th graders:

The third panel set:

Paper mache bowls, created by my 3rd/4th graders:

The third pillar:

Yarn and foil designs, created by my 5th/6th-graders:

The fourth panel set:

The perspective project, by my high schoolers:

Here’s our center piece:  a chandelier in the style of Dale Chihuly, using water bottles.  It was definitely the star of our show!  When the a/c came on in the gym, it made our chandelier slowly spin.  How cool was that?  This was made primarily by my Wednesday class, but other classes helped to paint the bottles because there were so many.  I think we used almost 300.

Schooled in Love:  2015 Art Show

Here’s the bake sale and refreshment station.  Thank you again to the St, Sabina Altar Society for lining up the use of the gym!