This month's art club projects turned out SO well!! Every month during art club I kind of rave about how much I love what the kids create.......so much so that the kids think it's funny! This month was no exception. I love it when I can send them home with artwork that is worthy of hanging on the wall!
We ambitiously tackled three projects: mandalas, peacock paintings, and mixed-media bird nests. You can click on the links in the previous sentence to see the posts that inspired these projects. I also had the peacock canvas project pinned on Pinterest, but the link was just to a Facebook page, so I don't have a source link for it.
We briefly discussed mandalas and radial symmetry. We approached the mandala project in two ways. They could either trace a peanut butter jar lid to make an inner circle and then create patterns OR we folded a pre-cut circle into eighths and they drew a repeating pattern in each "pie" section. As you can see from the photos of the finished projects, not everyone totally grasped the concept of radial symmetry, but they still had some really great pieces of artwork and enjoyed the process. We used pencils to draw our initial designs, then traced the pencil lines with black Sharpies. Color was added using watercolor pencils, and some children then painted their colored areas with water to blend the pencil coloring and others chose to not use the water. When finished, we matted the mandalas onto a colored background square. See finished mandalas below. As usual, I did not get photos of each child's project. We are SO busy making art that it's hard to stop and actually take a photo of it!!
For the mixed-media bird nests, the first step was mixing blue and white tempera paint to create a background color. Once they mixed the paint, each child painted a 6 inch square of heavy cardboard and let it dry. These dried pretty quickly. After their background square was dry, they used paper bags, yarn, glue, construction paper, and cardstock to make their nest, leaves and eggs. I really love how these turned out. I love projects that incorporate many different materials. See some of our finished nests below.
At the beginning of our work time, I called each child over and painted their hands blue to start the "body" of their peacocks. They then worked on other projects while their handprints dried. I had a table set up with a few colors of acrylic paint and some unsharpened pencils. They used the pencils to make spots of color on their peacocks. I also had a bunch of Sharpie markers in fine and ultra-fine tips. They used these to make the feathers and details on their peacocks. I had also printed out several close-up photos of real peacocks so they had a frame of reference for their work. I love how these turned out!!!! See finished work below.
In addition to our planned projects, at each art club I give the children two art journal prompts which are printed on address labels. They can take a label and stick it onto a page in their journals. I have a variety of art supplies that they can then use to create art based on their inspiration work. I so wish I had taken more photos of their work in their art journals. They amaze me each time with their innovation with materials and their creativity. This month's journal prompts were "shine" and "steamy". Prior to work time we usually brainstorm a variety of options for our journal words so they can think outside the box. For example, this week in journals the children drew the following to represent "steamy": a cup of hot cocoa with steam rising out, a kitchen with a steaming pot on the stove, a pot of boiling water with steam rising from it, etc. I did photograph two representations of "shine". These represent some of my youngest and oldest children's work. It goes to show how open-ended art can be and how accessible it is to all ages of children. I love how the older child used tissue paper to create her sun.
Finally, I wanted to share a few photos of the children just working so you can see how busy and happy they are during art club. If they finish all their projects and have extra time, they love sitting on the rug with lap desks and creating in their journals. I make a bunch of supplies available to them, and they just go at it! I think they could hang out in the studio for hours just creating!! If you are curious, this semester I've had 13 children in art club (this includes my own two sons). My mom is my assistant, and we each oversee one project each time. I have stations set up for any other projects that are available that week. The children range in age from preschool through fifth grade. We have a blast!!