Thursday, February 12, 2015

From the Art Docent: Texture

I thought it would be fun for the first-grade kids to create images, painting with glue and paper to create texture in their art. I brought bins of paper in various solid colors, visual texture, and tactile textures like basket weave, glitter-paper, corrugated cardboard, die cuts, and paper doilies.

I started the lecture by asking them if they remembered the first thing they touched in the morning and what it felt like...soft pajamas, warm sheets, rough carpet, fuzzy slippers and so on.

Then, I had them imagine the other things they'd touch getting ready for school from their clothes to their breakfast. I told them to imagine the lights suddenly went out, and it was pitch black! They still had to brush their teeth, but how could they find their toothbrush and toothpaste? I brought a black bag that contained a toothbrush, toothpaste tube, comb, scrubby, exfoliator, file and a calculator. Without taking the items out, they felt around in the bag, trying to guess what was in there. I asked if they could tell what item didn't belong?

It was a lot of fun! This was the first lecture where I felt the kids were really engaged. Success!

The lesson, however, was a bit of a rough one. I showed the kids how to paint the paper onto their cardboard hearts...I chose this shape because I thought the kids might be interested in making unique valentines. I pre-painted the hearts blue, so the background could be the sky, water, the color of a room, but it would be done, and they could focus on glueing the surface with their imagery instead of spending the limited class time covering the background.

The blue background threw them for a loop. Was it the back? Should they glue on the blue paint? Then they didn't know if they should tear the paper? Cut it? What should they glue down? Should they really glue over the top of the paper? I explained all these things, but there was still a block in getting started. They felt unsure of what they were supposed to do.

I quickly realized that even though I had examples for them up on the board: pizza heart, animal faces, city, random, robot, shapes, words, they really needed one theme to get them started. I think they felt overwhelmed.

Most of the kids enjoyed it, but unfortunately, I didn't get to walk around and snap pictures like I wanted. Clean up was a massive effort! I scraped glue from twenty cups back into the jug and then stood in front of the sink washing glue cups and paint brushes. Oy!

I did manage to get a snap shot of two texture hearts:

Top: Shark Reporter by Ruby
Bottom: Our City by Bianca

Supplies: paint brushes, Mod Podge glue, glue cups, paper towels, paper and cardboard, painted cardboard hearts, and yarn for hanging.

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