The Organized Art Teacher: Trying New Things
In the series, The Organized Art Teacher, I will offer creative ways to start the year off with an organized mindset. Ever wondered how other art teachers store their old lesson plans and samples? What about creating a balanced art curriculum or how to track what each class created? And what about inside the art room…what’s the best way to plan a theme-based art unit? This series will show you how starting with how to organize and store your art lessons and then how to manage lesson planning. Today, it’s all about moving outside your comfort zone!
Sometimes part of being a successful organized individual, is letting go once in a while. If everything we do is controlled and expected, then where’s the fun? We all love making things easier on ourselves, which is why striving for organization is so appealing, but what about our creative side? In the third part of the series, The Organized Art Teacher, I’ll explore the art of trying new things!
I love discovering an art concept, subject or technique that I haven’t tried before. After teaching art for eight years, I know I have a Patty-specific art style. I’m drawn to like-minded art teachers, I tend to follow blogs that are similar to mine and tend to do art lessons that I know will work. I know this not because of any scientific formula but because it’s what I’ve done a hundred times before. Sound familiar? This year I’m stretching myself. Via my trusty Google Reader, I have “starred” some of my favorite, but in some ways difficult for me, and vowed to give them a try.
Here is a list of my “reach” lessons:
- Clay Chess Set from Art for Small Hands: I don’t know how she does it, but Julie sure does create beautiful art in her classroom. She is very detailed in her instructions which makes this project seem intimidating, but I know I can do it! Everyone is always looking for a unique classroom auction project and I think this might be the best I’ve seen. This is my ultimate ceramic project.
- Line Drawing with Shading from Art with Mr. E and Teach Kids Art. I tend to shy away from colored pencil art projects because they always seem a bit flat to me, but this lesson is so good on so many levels. Kids really gravitate to the science of lines and I can see how this would have a huge likeability factor in the art room.
- One Point Perspective by Smart Class. I’m a total failure at perspective. I tried it during my first year of teaching and had such a revolt of frustration on my hands I vowed I would never try perspective again. I saw a museum/framed art lesson on someone’s blog last year and I thought, “Now, that looks easy enough.” But it wasn’t. It was one of the hardest lessons I ever tried. But this one? Brilliant!!!! I LOVE it. I am going to try it soon. Can’t wait, actually! Thanks, Natalie!
- Laurel Burch Inspired Cats by VK Bowerman. I love this. I’ve never done a Laurel Burch Inspired lesson quite like this one. Oh, the color! The pattern! Since there are no instruction, I’m going to have to study the samples to figure out the steps. When I do, I’ll post.
- Roberto the Architect art lesson by B an Artist. I’ve done a few architecture lessons so I know how popular they are. I’ve done castles, barns and victorian homes. This lesson (by a gal on one of my Flickr groups) has an excellent project based on a cute picture book, Roberto the Artist. Like the Laurel Burch cats, this lesson doesn’t have instructions, but I sure do like how they all turned out; whimsical, detailed and unique to each artist.
Here is my list of most intriguing art lessons off 2011:
- Swimming Self-Portraits from Use Your Coloured Pencils Such a great perspective for a school portrait and what a great way to kick off a school year!
- Salvador Dali Elephants from Smart Class I think the appeal with this lesson came from the fact that no one had ever done a good Salvador Dali art lesson. Not the easiest artist to copy!
- Collage Chickens by Clemence G These are just pure sweetness and love. The photography is brilliant as well, which is why I absolutely adore this site.
- Claude Monet Art Lesson by The Crafty Classroom This lesson had many of us smacking the sides of our heads. What a perfect “water lily” lesson for the little ones.