Saturday, May 10, 2014

Collaborative Shapes

Well, all right, the shapes may not have been collaborative, but putting them together was. As kindergarteners finished their contour shapes, they matched them up with their classmates' shapes on the drying racks.

Students, using my favorite Stayonal crayons, drew a small shape in the center of their board. We were using 6" X 6" squares. They measured one finger width from their first shape and drew another shaped around the first one. They continued doing this, pressing very hard with their crayon, until they got close to (but not touching) the edges of the board. They added little "roadways" at the midway point of each side running off the board. These were so we could connect the squares later.

Then it was time to add color. Students used any colors they wanted (although we had reviewed primary and secondary colors before starting) and drew a "fat line" right next to each of their crayon lines. Then they brushed clear water over their marker line and watched the color "travel" into and on the water. Some said, "It's like magic!" They learned that it was important to load the brush with water.


Part of the focus of this lesson was to provide practice tilting the marker at the right angle to get a thick, rather than thin, line of color.


Another focus was on how to use a water color brush keeping the bristles smooth, cleaning it with water and laying it on the table (or a tray) when not being used instead of leaving it sitting upright in the water container. I used my Mr. Brush chart before we started to reinforce these brush rules.

I heard a lot of conversation when 2 or even 3 colors ran together creating a new color. This was good reinforcement for last week's lesson where kids mixed primary colors to make secondaries.


Here is what a whole class collection looks like:

9 comments:

  1. Great! Love them as a group Christie.

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    1. Thanks, Mary. I'm looking forward to putting up another bunch in one of our hallways tomorrow.

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  2. I agree with Mary -they look great!

    This will seem silly - but this project just gave me an idea for a related project. Something about these shape paintings reminded me of abstract people with their arms outstretched. Wouldn't it be fun to make them into little people, and when you display them, they'd be all holding hands!

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  3. What are the "boards"? Or can you use watercolor paper? This looks like a fun lesson!

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    1. We were using 6" X 6" mat board. A local framing store saves their "scraps" for me. I re-cut it to the sizes we generally use (9 X 12, 8 X 10 and 6 X 6) and use that as much as possible for our art. I like the idea of recycling and it saves us money. However, for this project, watercolor paper or even a heavy quality (90 lb) drawing or sulphite paper would certainly work as well.

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  4. These I think could be very effective for older children too, to do them in different shapes. Yours look lovely.

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  5. Our color didn't spread as much -- do you think it was because of the different paper? We used water color paper. Are your mats "shiny"?

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    1. We used a mixture of random illustration and matt board that I get donated from a local frame shop, so I am not sure of the brand. Occasionally I will get one or two of those that don't spread as well, but not often. However, watercolor paper should work well consistently. I just gave it a try on some cold-press watercolor paper I have here and the color is running freely. I have also used this media with 90# drawing paper and it has worked fine, too. I am using Crayola Washable markers. That is critical -- permanent markers and even some of the off-brand watercolor markers don't seem to work as well. Hope it works better for you if you try it again. The kids really love watching the color spread!! Good luck with it.

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