Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Attention NY State Art Teachers!!

Hey, fellow NY State art teachers, the call has gone out for workshops for this fall's NYSATA conference, which will be held in November in Tarrytown, I believe. Workshop proposals are due at the end of June. Do you plan to attend this conference?

NYSATA 63rd Annual Conference: A Call for Workshop Proposals

The NYSATA 63rd Annual Conference IMAGINE THAT: Unlocking the Power of Creativity & Innovation in Art Education will take place November 18-20, 2011.

If you think you may attend, I'd like your input on my workshop proposal.

Here's some background to help you:
I've been teaching workshops at the NYSATA conference for a number of years now, and look forward to it each fall.

Last year I taught a workshop on Altered Books. (Actually I unexpectedly taught it twice, reprising it later in the day when a workshop presenter never showed up and a bunch of us, expecting a hands-on session making bobble-heads, were left high and dry.)

The year prior's topic was
"A Plethora of Pleasing Projects and Oodles of Original Ideas". This workshop was almost a disaster when the projector I brought refused to recognize my laptop, which contained a PowerPoint filled with images essential to my presentation. Thank goodness help arrived before too long!

Before that I twice taught hands-on workshops on
The Amazing Flexagon, which combines art with math. Once I taught it as a 1-hour (actually 50 minute) session, and the other time I got more complex in a double-session workshop. I'm thinking about presenting a flexagon workshop again this year.

I've also taught a couple of papier-mache' workshops (I don't want to do this again - too much to bring), and a weaving workshop, and more.

Last year as we waited for the Bobble-Head workshop, some of us discussed what we'd like to see offered next fall, and I'm struggling to remember what ideas were mentioned. I think we mentioned a workshop/roundtable discussion on general art room practices that work - from teaching painting techniques, to cleanup procedures, etc. Maybe a workshop on teaching color? I just don't recall.

So if you've been reading this far, now is where I'm asking for your opinions.

f you plan to attend the NYSATA conference, is there any workshop in particular you'd make a point of attending?

Should I offer another flexagon workshop? Or do you have a better idea?
Maybe something in one of my old posts might be a starting point for a workshop topic? Are you looking for hands-on or lecture style? Please keep in mind that I am not the right person to present a workshop on educational philosophy; so many of you would be so much better at this. It's just not my cup of tea. I've heard too much jargon over the past 35 years and frankly it all blends together after a while and becomes meaningless to me. I no longer absorb any of it.

Anyhow, I'm looking forward to your thoughts, since I need to get that proposal ready! Thanks for your help!!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Sunday Comic #14

Why am I posting a comic strip about substitute teachers?

I currently have a sub. I have been out of school since last Wednesday, and expect to return on June 8th. I know many of you will be done with school by then, but not me. Our last day here is June 24th, so I won't be missing the end of the school year. Don't worry, it's nothing serious, but I had a minor surgical procedure on Wednesday that had been put off for some time, and I'm happy to have it behind me. I'm recuperating well, my husband and son (who, after graduating college, is home briefly before moving to Boston in search of a job) have been taking good care of me, and I am looking forward to getting back to work in a little more than a week .

Last Tuesday, I stayed in school long after everyone else was gone (except the custodians) - actually until almost 8pm, putting the finishing touches on two weeks of sub plans, cutting paper, organizing materials, and generally cleaning up. Oh, and taking a bunch of photos around the art room so I'd have stuff to post while I'm out. You've already seen some of them in the last couple of posts, and I still have more left. So keep checking back, OK?! Even if your school year is already over!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

More sweet desserts!

This is the last of the Wayne Thiebaud projects. Third graders drew the dessert of their choice with oil pastels, and painted over with watercolors. Simple and quick.

And here's a while batch of them hanging up.

Friday, May 27, 2011


2nd graders learned about Wayne Thiebaud and then painted these fabulous cakes with tempera.

It was pretty challenging - we outlined with contrasting colors for "halation" and even though they were a small 9x12" size, we still hadn't gotten to painting backgrounds. As a matter of fact some kids were struggling to complete painting their fancy cakes during their art time.

So in the end, I said NO MORE PAINT and we cut them out and glued them on colored paper, which got decorated with an assortment of colored pencils, gel markers, and more. Any unpainted cake got completed with these materials as well, and the kids were happy. So they turned out pretty cool after all! YUM!

Here's (almost) the whole bulletin board:

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Time for the annual 1st grade lilac paintings!

I brought in lilacs and put a batch in a vase on each table. The kids took a good look, and then drew the vase, the stems, the leaves, a table, etc. I mixed up several different lilac paints to put on each table, and the kids used long-handled Q-Tips to paint the flowers.

Turn your head sideways for the last paintings. I don't know why Blogger insisted on rotating these 2 images below!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Monochromatic sign language contours

Fifth graders have been doing contour drawings, including hands, so I thought I'd try some sign language drawings. The only problem is that the signs are done with the right hand, and most of the kids are right-handed, so they couldn't draw their own hand posing. I tried having them pose their hands for each other, but everyone was anxious to draw. So I printed out copies of the hand signs, and the kids worked from them instead. When the hands were done (w/black Sharpies), the kids cut them out and glued them on a 12" square of construction paper of their choice.

Then, they filled the papers with their initials, using a monochromatic color scheme. They used markers, crayons, and colored pencils for this. I think they did an excellent job!

Oh what a life...

I sewed this cute little foam gingerbread house (complete with two door openings, a window, and a cute roof) for my cat a long time ago, but she NEVER went inside it. She simply climbed on top of the roof,squashed it down, curled up on it (or should I say in it?) like she's in a nest. She has used it this way ever since. I call it Kitty's Roof Nest. What a life!!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Random views from an art show

On the left, Erica (my grade 7-12 counterpart), me, and the marker-cap sign; and on the right, my delightful 5th grade helpers, Kylie, Delilah, and Kylee (and Brooke, missing from the photo). Interesting tidbit- I've been teaching SO long that I taught both of the parents of two of these gals, for at least a couple of years.

3rd grade (left) and high school Studio in Art (right) self portraits!

High school still life drawings, 2nd grade fish, & Jack and his ice cream cone.

3rd grade masks, 1st grade ice cream paintings

The cones are under flying pigs to keep kids from running/crawling underneath them.

Dancers and tooling foil masks, both 6th grade.

By the way, aren't our display flats AWESOME? They are 8' long and were built especially for us by our technology teacher and his pre-voc class. There hadn't been an art show for several years, due to the lack of a practical way to display. But this year, with the new secondary art teacher, the timing seemed right to push for new displays, and they built us 10 of these flats. They are fantastically easy to staple on, and are sturdy and manageable.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

In the Art Show - Fabulous Papier-Mache Masks, grade 3

I've previously blogged about building these masks, here: http://plbrown.blogspot.com/2011/04/beginnings.html but I never showed them to you all papier-mached, painted, embellished, and complete!

So here they are, hanging at our art show. I think they're pretty cool! By the way, another blogger mentioned that this art show was pretty late in the year. Not really - remember, we're in school here in NY state until June 24th - so there's still over a month to go, and I still have lots to post. So even if you are done or almost done, please check back over the coming weeks!

Now here's more masks:

And more......

And still more....

More art show, coming soon...