The kids from art camp made these incredible collages the other day from magazine cut outs and tape. Their original work was so inspiring I thought we had to do more with them. I asked the kids if they had any ideas and one girl said “We can make pencil toppers!” Ha! Genius. So, I color copied all of their originals a few times and let them go to town. I had a ton of stencils on hand, which made for great garlands, pencil toppers and story sticks. We glued our photo copies onto card stock before tracing and cutting. Really fun. What would you do?
I love shadow boxes. There are so many kinds and they have endless possibilities. I introduced these little worlds to the campers on Friday to lots of “oohs and ahhhs.” I’m excited to see what they come up with. I gave them the option of using the top or bottom of these boxes I picked up from Michaels. I had some paper prepped in the right size for the backgrounds but I also have blank and patterned paper on hand so they can make their own choices. The top is a glued on piece of transparency paper with puffy paint dots along the edges for a final touch. Last step is to glue on silver chain so the kids can hang them on the wall. You can also use leather straps or rope. I used some tape to hold the chain in place while the mega E6000 glue dried. This glue is my new savior for everything. I am hoping the kids come up with some new ways to make these boxes awesome. I am already seeing little people being made and getting requests for sculpey. We’ll see what happens on Monday. I try to make all my projects as open-ended as possible. All aspects are optional, including doing the project at all. We usually have a few stations going at once, which works out nicely. It’s camp, so I want to create a relaxed and fun space. The kids seem to respond to it really well.
This project was by far the biggest hit of Summer Art Camp 2013 Week 1. The kids LOVED making these lottery tickets. I had the older kids explain to the younger kids what a lottery is. Then I showed some samples I had prepared of some possible kid questions. My two sample tickets said “Can I go to bed late tonight?” and “Can I have ice cream tonight?” Both had yes and no written on the back under “magic lottery paint.” We scratched them off together as they watched with anticipation. Unfortunately, no ice cream for me tonight but I can go to bed late. The kids totally got it and started giggling, asking if they could make their own questions. Of course! They couldn’t wait to get started.
Some of my favorite kid questions were “Can I have a puppy?” and “Can I play Minecraft?” The best was when one of the kids realized she could write yes for all the options on the back and her parents would never know. MANY of the kids quickly followed suit. It was really great. The special magic lottery paint is really easy. It’s just acrylic paint mixed with a little dishwashing soap over clear contact paper. So, each card has a layer of clear contact paper over the answers yes and no with the mixed acrylic and dishwashing soap over it. The paint easily scratches off with a coin. *Note* I used gold acrylic here but would do a darker color next time or silver with a little black in it. We had to do a few layers of the gold because you could see the answers and it was kind of a pain.
Each kid got a plastic bag so they could have a whole lottery pack to take home. It created a great finished product, but more than anything the process was fantastic. The kids got so into it. One camper made over ten tickets. I would rate this project a ten. Please try it!
Summer Art Camp is in full swing. We finished up our door signs today and the kids took them home. I like to picture the kids putting the signs on their bedroom doors, telling their parents not to come in all serious. I was actually surprised more kids didn’t make Do Not Enter signs. The majority of kids just put their names.
All the kids, ages 5-11, enjoyed making these. What made it great is that they had the freedom to write whatever they wanted, so it appealed to everyone. I find the open ended projects are always the best ones. Give the kids freedom and materials and look out.
You can read specific directions here on how to make these.
I was searching for projects for my sculpey class and I came across this link. I was inspired by the little guy’s face in the middle and thought he needed some buddies. I made a sample and sure enough the kids in my class were inspired as well. I love the babies they made. On the back is a small round magnet so they can go right on the fridge. So cute.
My class has an age range from 5 to 10. Everyone was successful. We first made a ball for the face, followed by flattened balls for the eyes and skinny snakes for the mouths. The nose is a ball of sorts. The kids had free range on the hair. Most of them tried to create mini versions of themselves. It was fun trying to get the hair to look curly.
For all my teacher friends out there, this turned out to be an awesome all school bulletin board. We asked all the students to bring in one of their favorite books for our Havurot group on Friday. Basically, our whole school separates into small groups of 6 or 7 once a month for the whole year to work on different projects. It’s really nice because kids of all ages get to work together and learn together. Anyway, each student brought in their own book and those that forgot, got to take one out of the library or look up the cover on a computer or iPad. We talked about each book in our group and then had about a half hour to create our own book covers to recommend our books to others.
Some kids created their own art, but most copied the covers. We don’t do copying very often, if ever, but I have to say, they LOVED it. Every age group was successful and the overall effect is pretty spectacular. It’s so much fun to see kids walk by and comment on the different covers. You hear things like “Ohhh, I love that book.” or “Oh man, I wish I did that one. That is so my favorite.” All the parents love to come by and find their child’s cover. Each time I pass I notice a different fantastic cover I hadn’t noticed before. The most popular books wereThe Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins and Wonder by R.J. Palacio, which I can’t wait to read this summer. I think eight kids did Wonder. So, if you’re looking for a great bulletin board for your school, here’s a great one. I’ve included the book template to make it easy. We printed it on card stock and only gave the kids sharpies to use.
I’m happy this bulletin will live throughout the summer. I’m going to put up a little envelope on the side with papers and little pencils so that kids can write down which books they are interested for summer reading. Happy summer everyone!
Laurel Burch is a fantastic artist to inspire kids to create. You can read all about her here. I did three Laurel Burch inspired projects last summer and am just getting around to posting them now. I started by showing the kids a video about Laurel and a few examples of her work, like this.
The kids quickly were drawn into Laurel’s world and noticed a ton of details that made her work intriguing, especially the way Laurel painted the cat’s eyes. After our discussion we went on to do directive draw’s on canvases. Each child had their own canvas and followed simple step by step directions to draw their cat. Then they were let free to add whatever details they wanted with paint and then puffy paint. They really enjoyed this process and each kid felt really successful. Directive draws can be really great for so many kids, especially the ones who don’t feel like they are “artists.”
Since the kids were really into the whole Laurel Burch theme we stayed with it and made popsicle stick puzzles with the same design. The kids were excited to practice the cat they had just learned to do. They helped each other a lot with this, reminding one another of different steps. The trick when doing a popsicle stick puzzle is to tape one side with masking tape while you draw so the pieces don’t move.
Lastly, we made sculpey cat pins. I gave the kids a cardstock paper cutout of the cat shape that they carved out of the sculpey. Then we added the details with different sculpey tools. The pins were really cute. I still have mine and love it. Maybe we’ll do paper mache cats this summer or cat shaped pillows. Thank you Laurel. Your inspiration lives on.
Any book that suggests De La Soul’s 3 Feet High and Rising has to be good right? Unbored – The Essential Field Guide to Serious Fun kind of knocked my socks off today. One of my students brought it in as recommended summer reading and I couldn’t get enough of it. There is something in here for every kid. It’s equal boy stuff and girl stuff. There are things to do outside, inside and everyplace in between. There are also great lists of musicals for kids dating back from the 50′s to today. A TON of work went into this book. It’s really something special. So happy to have stumbled upon it. It will be my new go to gift for kids. Highly recommend!
How cute is this little piggy bank? I made this with my second graders today for our math unit and they loved it! The only thing I left out is scotch tape. You can use the glue for gluing the facial features on the pig, but instead of gluing the face to the cup, I recommend taping it. Way easier.
Here are the sizes we used for all the shapes. 1 5×5 hot pink square for the face, 4 2.5×2 hot pink rectangles for the ears, 4 2×1.5 light pink rectangles for the inner ears, 1 1cmx4in hot pink rectangle for the tail, 4 1.5×3 hot pink rectangles for the feet, 2 1cmx1cm black squares for the eyes, 2 1cmx1cm hot pink squares for the nostrils, 1 1×2 light pink rectangle for the snout
First, find a circular object that is almost the size of the 5×5 square. A full roll of masking tape works really well. Trace the circle and cut it out. Cut the 1×2 light pink rectangle into an oval. One of the best tricks I’ve learned for teaching kids to cut circles and ovals is to tell them to cut off the corners of a rectangle or square. If they curve the paper or scissor a little while they are cutting, it creates a really nice round shape. Most second graders are really successful with this step. Cut out the nostrils and eyes from the smallest rectangles by cutting off the corners. Cut out the hot pink and light pink rectangles for the ears. I tell the kids to imagine a center point at the top of the rectangle and to cut off the top two corners towards the center point. Glue on all the piggy features. Make sure to glue the ears to the back of the piggy face by putting a little glue on the bottom front of the ear and gluing it to the back of the face. The cup is the bank. Prior to gluing or taping the face to the cup, exacto a little cut out in the cup for the money to slip through. I did this part, of course. Roll the hot pink legs into tubes, tape together and tape each one to the cup. Last, but definitely not least, curl the skinny tail onto a pencil or marker and tape to the back of the cup.
I demonstrated the whole project from start to finish in front of the class and then sent them off to do it independently. This worked great. I encouraged kids to add their own details. One student added wings, which totally rocked. Kids are so cool.