The 3rd-5th graders had a good time making these. They used metallic Sharpies and chalk pastels. I just love how all the houses have their own personalities.
We’re working on different cultures in the classes. Right now, we’re south of the border. The 3rd-5th grades made Mexican blankets, and the high schoolers made “tin” snakes. These turned out really nice, and it only took a couple of classes, so it was a great kick-off project.
They started out by cutting the shape of a basic snake out of foam core.
Then, they cut out pieces of cardboard and glued them in whatever designs they liked. The shapes just needed to be geometric.
Once the glue was dried, they covered their snakes in small pieces of aluminum foil.
They really liked this next part: coloring the snake using colored Sharpies.
The kids love tangles, and when combined with their names, they really had a good time. These turned out pretty well! I got the original idea from here.
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!
My 5th/6th graders did piece based on the artwork of Charley Harper. Here’s the picture it was based off of:
First, the students drew a birdbath and outlined it gray oil pastel. Then they used a gray watercolor wash to fill it in. Once it was dry, they cut it out. They lined up the birdbath on the second sheet of paper and made a small mark at the top of it in pencil. They removed the birdbath and drew a cardinal body on the line, like a Hershey’s Kiss. Next, they drew two dots for the eyeballs, and then drew a “U” and connected the dots at the top. Inside of that shape, they drew an upside-down “U”, and then a “V” to create the beak. They colored in the black part with a Sharpie, as well as outlined the cardinal with it. Once they were done with the body, they used a ruler and a red Sharpie to make the “flapping” wings. An orange Sharpie was used to color in the beak. Then they used oil pastels to color in the cardinal and make the branches. They water-colored the background blue and then glued the birdbath into place. Finally, using a mix of glue, shaving cream, and glitter, they added puffy snow to the birdbath, the bottom of the paper, and to the branches. They REALLY loved that part, and it looked pretty awesome!
I decided to make one gigantic post for this one (well, all but the dissection – which is next week!).
I always love, love, love lab day in science. I really wish we had two hours to do what we need to, but we only have our 45-minute allotment. Because of the time restriction, we have to h-u-s-t-l-e when we build models and/or do experiments. It requires the kids to stay focused and act quickly. Sometimes that can be a little hard, especially if there’s a lot to cover. Today was one of those days: a lot to cover, and not a lot of time. The kids (as usual) did wonderfully.
We’re on Lesson 6 (respiratory system) now, because we skipped Lesson 5 (nutrition). If we have enough time at the end of the year, we’re add that to the end. Yes, it’s important, but I felt it was more necessary to cover the parts first.
For today’s lab on the lungs, we built two models and did one (very) quick experiment. In the first model, we built lungs, and in the second model, we showed how the diaphragm is responsible for inflating and deflating the lungs by pulling and pushing them.
Here’s how we built the lungs:
Some fun shots of the kids having a great time inhaling and exhaling to make the bags inflate and deflate:
With our second model, I had the kids pair up. It was a good exercise in having a “lab partner.” I found the instructions for this here. Here are the finished products:
And finally, the experiment. The kids each had a clear cup and were instructed to fill it halfway. I gave them each a straw, and went to each cup, adding a few drops of Bromothymol Blue, which turned the water a nice, deep, blue color. They took the straw and gently blew into the water. They discovered that as they exhale, they breathe out a weak acid, called carbonic acid. Because Bromothymol Blue is the active ingredient in liquid PH-testing solution, their breath turned the water yellow. It took about 2-4 minutes for it to happen, but when it did, there were a whole lot of ooh’s and ahh’s.
You can find Bromothymol Blue in pet stores that carry a lot of choices for aquariums. Most places only sell the PH-testing strips, but you need the solution.
Here are the kids finishing up the experiment:
Next week’s lab: dissection! Yay!
Summer Art Camp has been one of the highlight of my year. I’ve really enjoyed having the kids play with all sorts of mediums! We kicked off the fun with this project because we needed it to dry before we could do the next step. Here’s my example I made for the kids.
Here are the kids drawing their parrots. Some moms came back the next week and told me their kids went home and drew parrots until the cows came home. Let’s hear it for inspiration! Yay!
The water coloring technique I showed the kids was very challenging for them. I told them to view the glue lines as speed bumps, rather than stop signs. Another technique for them to master was using MORE water, rather than less. I wanted them to puddle their watercolors to create a lot of imperfections, as they will need them in the last step. These concepts were really hard for them, but they conquered! They were so proud of themselves! Here are a few of the parrots the kids did:
The last part of the assignment was to outline all the glue lines and “imperfections” of the watercolors. Here are some of the finished works: