Smile! Pass it on. Mona Lisa and More

I won’t be posting any new lessons (most likely) on my blog for a little while as I took a leave of absence from my elementary art teacher job this school year to spend extra time abroad with my husband and daughters because life is too short not to have adventures! However, I am still leaving my students’ Art Room Smiles everywhere I travel, so if you are here because you found a Smile, find me on Instagram @monalisaandmore My 5th grade students make the Smiles out of clay and glaze them each school year as a kindness project. Besides my art teacher Instagram, you can also find me on Insta @utuscany which is my husband’s travel company. We will be sharing our travel adventures on both pages. Until then……SMILE!!! Pass it on. 😁

Books! (Drawing)

Another book you need for the art room! Linus let’s negative talk cloud the way he feels about his art. He eventually learns to work together with his biggest critic, Ernie the eraser, to create beautiful art. Has a good lesson in it, but also could inspire a reductive drawing lesson, negative/positive space drawing, or a collaborative drawing lesson.

4th Grade Artist Portraits

Loved making these artist portraits with 4th grade! Students first drew a headless version of themselves as if they were painting. Then, I took a picture of them to be printed out for the following week and glued down. We made a dot on the paper to indicate where the vein king and floor lines would all meet. We used our rulers to create the likes of that wall and two floor lines. We discussed the different angles of the floor and talked about perspective. The next week, we added the drawing of the painting and watched When Pigasso Met Mootisse. We then looked at the artwork of Picasso and Matisse and let it inspire our paintings within a drawing. We used our rulers and talked about following the angles of the floor lines to create our checkerboard pattern. After drawing everything, we traced everything in Sharpie. Marker was used for the floor and painting. Twistable colored pencils were used for the body. Two crayons in the same color family were used for the walls along with texture plate. Great results thus far!

Landscape and Cityscape Reflections

I have done this lesson before, but I changed it up a bit this time. 1st graders created landscapes, and 2nd graders created cityscapes. We use 80lb 9×12 paper. Fold in have lengthwise. Draw only on the top half of the paper! We looked at Claude Monet’a artwork. He created so many paintings using water and reflections, so it was a perfect reference for this project. We drew our scenes in pencil first, then tried the lines in Sharpie. Next, students used washable markers to color in their scenes. I told them to leave as little white as possible (maybe a detail here and there or a cloud). Once that is down, we worked at the “messy station” by the sink. I used a spray bottle in the fine mist setting to spray their paper. They filed it in half and gently rubbed before taking a peak inside to see how their reflections turned out. Most turned out beautifully on the first try, BUT a few seemed to have either a different brand of paper or a different weight of paper and didn’t turn out at first. It was as if the marker wouldn’t leave much of a reflection. I tried wetting it again and letting it sit folded together for a few minutes. This did the trick! It totally worked, thank goodness! The 80lb mixed media paper had no problems!

Kindergarten Rainbow Self-Portraits

The kindergarteners gave a weather-themed music performance coming up, so we created neon rainbow paintings to be on display for the show! Day 1, the students drew themselves in Sharpie and cut it out. The direction was to leave a thin bubble around drawing so none of the lines would be cut off. Day 2, we talked about rainbow order, then gave it a twist by using neon colored paint. We did the stripes of the rainbow step by step as a group. For the sky, I put white and blue paint in a tray at each table so students could mix their own sky color. We glued down the portraits when the paintings dried. So cute!

Art Books (Kindness)

I stumbled upon this book as I looked for stories about kindness. The cover art caught my eye, and the inside illustrations are AMAZING! What a find! About a lonely woman afraid of the outside world until a paper airplane flies through her window. The best part is that her house slowly becomes filled with color as her friendship with a little boy grows. What a perfect book about kindness AND the best artwork inside!