For the first time ever, I attempted a “Free Art” exploration with my littles. This was tricky. They haven’t yet had an opportunity to explore our art room and art materials without careful instruction, rules, limits, and guidelines. I was surprised with how safe they all played it- but happy that we didn’t end up with one giant mess 😉
Tinfoil monoprints were so much fun! I did this project with my Mommy and Me art class that I teach over the weekends. We used acrylic paint, foam rollers, and q-tips. I read the kids the book “Ish” before we started and it seemed like a great intro. I could seriously do this project all day every day.
The photo is of our Oaxacan animal sculptures in progress. These have been a really interesting project. Building armatures with preschoolers is frustrating (for me and for them) but worth the effort. We covered these in plaster craft strips that only require being dipped in water which I love. Beware if you ever use it- the plaster is DUSTY. That pink elephant on the left? I know. It’s awesome. A sweet little three year old created that all by herself.
To celebrate Dr. Seuss, we created Seuss-inspired characters with made up names. The creatures were drawn using marker and oil pasted and the backgrounds are watercolor stripes (for the most part). They look fairly awesome hanging up in our school! Such happy little guys!
We even had time to sneak in a few Pipe Cleaner Lorax trees- Truffula Trees?
Something I’m working on practicing with my littles is observational drawing. So much of the experience we have had in our classroom thus far has been imaginative and based completely on what my kids perception is of the world around them. It’s not often that we take the time to examine and observe real objects and practice creating the connection between what our eyes see and what our hands are doing with various art materials. While I don’t think it’s OVERLY important to practice our skills in an analytical way, I do think it’s important and interesting to expose children to this art practice when they are young. Part of the frustration I often see in young children in regards to art comes from too far of a divide between what they see with their eyes and what they can do with their hands. Bridging that gap can help to propel our art practice forward and continue to provide a method for my little artists to express themselves better and better.
My kids have been learning about dinosaurs so I brought in a bunch of little plastic dinosaurs. Every kid got to select their own prehistoric animal to examine, sit on their paper, and then eventually of course, to draw. After we completed a few observational drawings, we worked on a big group dinosaur habitat mural to add their drawings to.
I love how this turned out and we had wonderful teamwork while it was in the works. Sometimes these little guys amaze me.
One of my little ones was so proud of their observational drawing, that he didn’t want to cut it out and add it to our mural. He only wanted to take it home for Mommy. And how can you argue with that?!