My first group of grade 6 students just finished their portrait paintings. The works did not have to be realistic. Instead, they are encouraged to explore colour and brushwork. Some took influence from art movements or artists and some simply experimented with the tempera paint. You can view the five week project outline here and the Flickr set here.
Kaden, a student of mine presented at PechaKucha Tokyo. He’s 11 years old and presented in front of approximately 300 people showing the progress of his art work. For those not in the know, this presentation format allows 20 slides for 20 seconds each. I can’t take any credit for this or for his art, as I have only taught him for a single unit this year in grade 6. I am however proud and enjoy working with him as he has a lot of drive in class. I look forward to seeing what future projects will inspire him. You can watch his presentation here.
My grade 9 Art Foundation students recently finished their unit on observational drawing. It’s a ten week project where they receive instruction for one 80 minute lesson a week. You can view the unit breakdown week by week here on the wiki if you wish.
The application area for their assessment consists of measurements, proportions, value/tone gradation and composition. The class is varied by both gender and ability. Overall, the majority of students showed improvement both in accuracy and in speed. The slideshow below (or via Flickr here) includes both warm-up work as well as their final pieces. All work is either A4 or A3 in size. Feel free to leave them some comments.
Our Grade 2s had an Endangered Awareness Day yesterday for one of their units. The second grade area was transformed into a range of habitat zones, each exhibiting their species. Other students, classes, teachers and parents were invited to attend during certain times. Students researched their species along the following lines:
1. Interesting facts about my species
2. Food chain or food web for my species
3. Ways in which my species is suited to its habitat
4. Human activities that challenge my species to survive
5. How people can help my species survive
Presentations, displays, books, posters and dioramas were created. Some even dressed up! It really was a zoo ; )
Artscape ’09 launched Friday February 27th here in the Tokyo area. It’s an annual exhibition from international students living in the Tokyo/Kanto area that encompasses various media. It’s on until Mar 8 in Tokyo at Kodomono Shiro (National Children’s Castle). It is free. Schools compete in a logo competition and a student also creates the poster.
Info/gallery for past Artscape exhibitions may be found here. Updates/Website for this year coming soon.
5-31-1 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku. Tel: 03-3797-5666. Open Tue-Fri 12:30-5:30pm, Sat-Sun 10am-5:30pm, closed Mon. Nearest stn: Shibuya or Omotesando. www.kodomono-shiro.jp (Japanese only)
K students at my school have converted a classroom into a gallery to display artwork they have done for their unit entitled, “The Artist In Me.” As the teachers state:
This unit introduces and gives children opportunities to explore a variety of artistic media including visual art, dramatic and musical forms and dance. They are encouraged to explore and communicate ways in which artists, including themselves, express ideas and feelings. Children are involved in the selection of work from this unit to display in the kindergarten gallery.
Since we are a PYP school, their central idea is “People use many different forms of expresion to convey their uniqueness.”
The work is excellent and I congratulate the teachers for their efforts! They studied the elements of art, artists such as Klimt, VanGogh, Mondrian, Louise Nevelson, Sumie brushwork, sculpture and whole lot more.
Grade 5 students at my school are undergoing their exhibition. Those of you who teach in PYP schools know this is a big deal. They are researching how people around the world need help in various ways. The three classes have set up a Posterous blog to ask questions and share answers. They have received some input from parents and friends and I ask if you know of any organisations or situations to assist them, please contribute. They have broken up into groups to research different aspects. If you can contribute or wish to have a look, click here.
At my school, it’s nice to see some high school students presenting their research in different ways besides PowerPoints and reports. This class used Animoto to present their findings on HIV for their geography class. I am baffled why more students/teachers don’t use it. Feel free to leave them comments here.
Recently, grade 1s at my school were inquiring about transportation. They have just finished this unit. The reason I am writing is because the teachers gave the students choice on how to present. This provided a much more interesting form for assessment and was an excellent vehicle for creativity. Students needed to examine and share what a transportation system needs and how it works etc., regardless of how they presented. Some chose plastercine models, some drew large illustrations, some drew their work via computer and some created slideshows within KidPix. Students were motivated and engaged during the tasks as it possessed a stronger connection to themselves and offered differentiation. When complete, students then planned a field trip to a local area and discussed how they could get there with the knowledge they gathered. Parents were also invited into the class to view the work.
Our grade 2s were examining retelling stories. Some chose to record audiobooks using GarageBand. The group below rewrote a popular story, recorded it and added sound effects. They then used the mp3 as the soundtrack for their shadow puppet performance. Watch below or click here. The point is, the teachers discussed the ideas and outcomes first, and then decided on the tools alongside the students. Make the technology fit you, instead of vice versa
Previously I reported on how some Grade 4 classes were defining Japanese culture for their unit of study here at my school. Students were asked to take pictures of unique elements of Japanese culture. As a grade level, they used this information to define Japanese culture and think about how history and geography have shaped it. They first posted their photos on Posterous and then the above video was made with those pictures using Animoto (info available under the Cool Web Tools page on this site). A great resource to review their unit as well as to introduce the topic next year.
Click here to watch via YouTube and leave a comment.