Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Elements of Art (sorting game)

As I stated in my previous post- I have spent quite a bit of time over this summer creating games that we can use in class to enhance art content. I learned a lot at the first school that I taught at and one of the most striking lessons for me was what a great learning tool SORTING is.

I watched my then 4 year old learn fabulous reading and analyzing skills from sorting out words by syllables, same starting letter, same number of letters, etc, etc. I also LOVED watching him come up with his own ways to sort words....hello creative thinking!

So I try to implement sorting (especially with my Kindergartners) into my lessons as often as I can.

I have a love/hate relationship with the Elements of Art. They are obviously necessary, great tools to use and good way to enter into looking at/discussing a piece of art.....but I remember when I was taught them in my own childhood- they bored me. I try diligently to make sure when I teach these elements I am weaving them into our projects and not setting them out as terms they must learn and rules they must follow.

I thought sorting would be a great way to further extend learning the Elements of Art. I installed a magnetic board by the drawing station (I'll explain the station later) in my room. I painted simple illustrations of examples of each element, as well as headings, on paper for acrylic painting. I sealed them with matte varnish and slapped a magnet on the back of each one. Happy sorting!

I also scanned and color printed several sets that I will laminate so we can do the activity as a class. I tested them out on my own daughter going into Kindergarten and was thrilled that by the end of sorting them just a few times she was noticing the difference between "shape" and "form" in objects all over the house for the following days ;).

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Color Wheel game

This is not entirely completed but it is one of the several interactive "games" I've been making over the summer for the coming year. I've taught color theory for a while now and I see it stick really well with some kids but it doesn't resonate with others. I've obsessed over how to make it more enticing for the kids to learn and this is my idea ;).

I bought an unstained wood table top from Lowes and painted it with a simple color wheel showing primary, secondary and tertiary colors. I painted little wood pieces to match each color on the color wheel and I drilled eye hooks into the top of each one (bought those at Discount School Supply).

The color wheel is mounted a wood base that I built with a rod so the wheel spins (endless fun!). I mounted my "arrow" at the top and painted a sign. I have two ideas so far for games- a child can spin twice and whatever two colors they land on we will mix together as a class to see what color we create (we might be making "mud" colors but that's OK- we are learning!). We can also play a color scheme game by landing on colors and figure out what color scheme those colors would make.

In addition to the games, each time a child lands on a color they will pick the corresponding wood piece and try to name if that color is primary, secondary or tertiary.

My hope is this hands on exposure will really get the students mastering color in no time and have a really good time doing it!!

So far my own children can't stop spinning this thing since I mounted it in my room a couple of weeks ago ;). I'll keep my fingers crossed that this is a hit with my students as well!!