Tuesday, June 8, 2010

a year of teaching art to young artists

This  year of teaching at the private classical school went well. We ended the school year this past week. I put together two art shows, one for the grammar school and one for the upper school. The pleased exclamations from all the parents and grandparents made my hours of work so much worth it.
I am also proud of  the projects that I came up with for the kids.
Well, first a disclaimer, I used many sources for the teaching curriculum this year. Of course, some good  books are out there, I like what Usborne publishes, and "Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain" by Betty Edwards.  I owe a lot to some great elementary art teachers who blog about the lessons they use and share generously on the internet.
And, I have a few projects that are my very own ideas; a fourth grade project studying ancient Mayan pyramids, Guatemala,  the rain forest and jungle animals; second grade Greek warships after reading the "Odyssey"; third grade fresco paintings on real plaster while studying Giotto.
And how about these paintings that my first graders made after lessons on Egypt, and drawing camels?
I wanted to get across the idea that we could draw anything if we started with basic shapes. Drawing a camel with palm trees and pyramids is quite an advanced illustration assignment and they did amazingly well.
Notice that they also got the idea of foreground, middle ground, and background? Amazing!