Archive for the ‘Spring 2014’ Category

Opposites Sculptures

posted on May 9, 2014 in Spring 2014, Student Teacher Blog

Ceramics I students talked about opposites they have experienced in their lives and pulled symbols from their stories. Then, they positioned their symbols around a pinched cylinder to create movement. The project required the creation of their images through the use of coils. This was proven easier for some and harder for others. While some students who have trouble with craftsmanship found an easier time with the coils, others had trouble wrapping their heads around it. I then allowed the students to use some slab pieces as long as the majority of the piece used coils. For the finishing, the students had to mix one color of glaze with black and white to create values. They had to use these only these values to glaze their piece to learn the element of value.


Why We’re All Here

posted on May 9, 2014 in Spring 2014, Student Teacher Blog, Uncategorized

Last night was the student exhibit. I couldn’t have been more proud of my fellow student teachers as well as my students. As I walked the halls and navigated the crowd, I felt myself getting emotional. Seeing my students show up and pull their spines straight for pictures with their artwork made my heart swell. Despite all frustrations throughout the nearly 19 weeks, last night was a reminder of why we’re all here.

It was an awesome experience to be able to meet the families of the students who came. I learned a lot about the children as well as their backgrounds and felt fortunate that I had a good amount show up. Beside the students, seeing my two cooperating teachers was of course a pleasure. The closer I’ve gotten to graduation the more gratitude I hold for all the time and energy that was poured into my learning. I couldn’t have been more fortunate in my two placements and can truly say I have two wonderful new friends.

On a less sentimental note, the prepping for the exhibit was a learning curve but I totally have a new appreciation for post-it notes. I LITERALLY don’t think I could’ve held it together (mentally) without all the planning behind it. I’m grateful for all the work everyone put it so that it ran so smoothly.

As I submit my last blog post and go into finishing out my last day of teaching, I’d like to say to my fellow and soon-to-be teachers: NEVER forget why we are here!


Before people started arriving! SK and I decided to create this "#selfie" booth last minute! It was a BIG hit.

Before people started arriving! SK and I decided to create this “#selfie” booth last minute! It was a BIG hit.

My cooperating teacher and I; ART SOUL MATES. We took this picture at the #selfie booth.

My cooperating teacher and I; ART SOUL MATES. We took this picture at the #selfie booth.

Pre-exhibit. I'd like to send a thank-you letter to the maker of "post-its." Never underestimate the importance of planning!

Pre-exhibit. I’d like to send a thank-you letter to the maker of “post-its.” Never underestimate the importance of planning!


A wonderful evening

posted on May 9, 2014 in Spring 2014, Student Teacher Blog, Uncategorized
The welcome sign

The welcome sign

Part of the display

Part of the display

The student art show is the culmination of all of our hard work over the past semester. It finally feels official but yet it’s all coming to an end. Words can barely describe how amazing it felt to see everything put together. I am so proud of all of us.

infographic art observers

Visitors enjoying my student’s art work

One of the most rewarding part of the night was getting to see my students. Particularly the elementary students, who I haven’t seen in 8 weeks. Seeing the excitement on their faces was priceless. I had the opportunity to talk to the students and parents about their work. It was fun to ask their students to tell their parents about the art work and the process. Some were able to remember everything but some needed a bit of a refresher.

performance art showoff

A student showing his parent his art work.

I can’t believe our undergraduate journey is coming to an end. I look forward to what comes next but I will have fond memories this experience. What a wonder ending to this journey, seeing all the students faces and the work on display makes all the long, sleep deprived hours worth with it. Congratulations Class of 2014, commence awesomeness!


Art With a Function (8th grade)

posted on May 9, 2014 in Spring 2014, Student Teacher Blog

Art with a Function:

Unfortunately my 8th graders didn’t finish their amazing ceramic sculptures in enough time for the show, but here is a snapshot of what they have been working on and have been finishing up this week.

8th clay 3         8th clay 6

Students started off their clay unit learning about the basic clay techniques: coiling, pinching, and slab. Learning the three functions of art: physical, social, and personal, students looked at Pre-Columbian  funerary vessels and urns in relation to the contemporary artist Vipoo Srivilasa and created functional works of art. Students explored physical and visual textures within their pieces and created their vessel stemming from two personality traits.

8th clay 5  8th clay 8  cat with hait painting





Silhouettes and Narratives

posted on May 9, 2014 in Spring 2014, Student Teacher Blog

Students learned that artists can use their work to teach others. Looking at Kara Walker and silhouettes as narratives, students used silhouettes to communicate resolutions to social injustices in the world and within their communities. Learning about the different meanings of colors due to associations and culture the students used color as symbols to convey emotions based on the issue they addressed. The project was a tedious, but the students had strong opinions about the issues they addressed and worked very hard. Through this project I learned to be willing to be flexible and to make changes that benefit the students and overall results of the project. Initially I had a different idea for the backgrounds, but being reflective and considering student interest, I adjusted the project to have painted backgrounds. They were overall pleased with the end results.

silhouette cutting   silhouette completefinished


Reflection and Finding/Using Resources

posted on May 9, 2014 in Spring 2014

During my secondary placement, I worked hard to address and find resolutions to classroom management. Looking at different books and assessing situations, I finally found a link that had me pause and say, if I had seen this before, I would have done things differently. As I read each point, I could think of an example where I encountered those issues. Once I began addressing some of these issues the in the manner in which the reading suggested, I saw a major difference in the control of the classroom and student behavior. response. I definitely had to share the link because I think it could be beneficial to someone else.

This site also has other resources that are beneficial to other avenues of teaching.


Bizarre Portraits

posted on May 9, 2014 in Spring 2014, Student Teacher Blog

olivia 6th portraitSTEP 1olivia6th working 7STEP 2

This 6th grade lesson was one of my favorites from my entire student teaching experience. I introduced the students to contemporary artist Storm Tharp and Japanese Kabuki Theater. Students learned how artists influence one another, through comparing and contrasting the elements within the artists portraits and the  exaggerated real and unreal elements present in kabuki theater costume and performances. Students learned several media techniques: colored pencil, graphite, and watercolor and then applied them in their portraits. The kids enjoyed it, and I have to say it was a success!

olivia el finSTEP 3 show 6th FINISHED PIECES

Abstract Characteristic Sculpture Series

posted on May 7, 2014 in Spring 2014, Student Teacher Blog

Ceramics II students developed conceptual thinking skills and learned how to create something abstract. First, they chose three character traits about themselves. Then, they brainstormed imagery for those traits and abstracted them. The students created sculptures form these images. Afterwards, the students added expressive lines using the slip trailing technique.



The students had to problem solve their own way of building their sculptures, and every one’s turned out different!



We thought about smoothing techniques and how the sculptures would look all the way around. Then, the students applied the slip trailing. Slip trailing is when you squeeze slip out of a bottle to make designs on your sculpture, like decorating a cake.


Finally, the students glazed their pieces with Mayco Elements glazes. These are wonderful in that they will pool up around the slip trailing and will enhance the effect!

photo(2) photo(1)

SWAG Journal Entry: Analogous Colors Study (Art 8)

posted on May 6, 2014 in Spring 2014, Student Teacher Blog

SWAG (Self-expressive Writing and Art Graffiti) Journals began as an initiative between the Language Arts and Fine Arts teacher at the school I am placed in at the secondary level. The initiative was created to emphasize reflective processes in both writing and art. Students use these journals, which are actually decorated discarded library books, in both language arts and art classes, and when they make an entry into the book it includes both a design portion and writing portion. In either class, though, the entries are directed towards processes and topics for a specific unit in that class. For example, the language arts teacher may be discussing a poetry unit, so she has students write and illustrate original poems.

swag cover swag cover 2

In our class, I had students design spreads based on analogous color schemes. These color schemes were chosen at random by students by way of choosing a paint chip from a grocery bag and determining what color the paint chip was on the color wheel. Students then identified the two colors on either side of that color on the color wheel to determine their analogous color scheme and create their spread.

student working3student working2student workingswag entry detailstudent working4

Once students finish their designed spread using either oil pastel or colored pencil, they enter the final writing portion, which includes answering questions about what the color scheme reminded them of, specifically in nature, as they are going to continue this theme into their following studio unit (see Patterns in Nature post).  These are examples of the final results. 

swag entry 3 swag entry 2 swag entry






Illustrating Idioms (Computer Art 7/8)

posted on May 6, 2014 in Spring 2014, Student Teacher Blog

Students began this unit by looking at the surrealist images of artist Maggie Taylor and her exclusive use of Adobe Photoshop. Students then determined that idioms, when depicted in literal imagery, could convey a surrealist theme as well. Idioms are an expression whose meaning is not predictable from the usual meanings of its constituent elements, such as “kick the bucket” or “hang one’s head.” Students then had the opportunity to choose their own idiomatic expression that they wanted to illustrate both with drawing materials on paper and through a “digital collage” of images in Adobe Photoshop. Students learned masking and layering techniques of images found online or photographs taken during class in Adobe Photoshop through this process. See if you can guess what idiom is being illustrated!

student working 2     student working 3student working 4student workingfinal idiommr cook working with studentstudents workingfinal digital idiom4final digital idiom3final digital image2

final digital image5


SOL: 7.4, 7.17, and 7.19




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