Monday, December 8, 2014

First Grade Portraits--learning about faces and backgrounds

Grade One.
We started with a head and shoulder outline, printed on the copy machine.  We talked about eyes, noses and mouths, and I drew many types on the board for them. They drew the portraits one week, and then we talked about backgrounds the next. I asked them to draw repeating designs in the background, and whatever they interpreted that to be is what you see.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Cake Circle Sunflowers. Grade One.

Because I have a lot of cake circles and wanted to use some of them up, as a fall project we made sunflowers on sticks. First, the students practiced drawing them on scrap paper, and actually painted the practice pieces. this took one class period. It was difficult for first graders to work on a larger scale, so there was a lot of erasing. During the following class we re-drew the sunflowers on the cake circles and  painted them. Another week the students painted the sticks and cut out the leaves. I hot glued the projects together, as first graders cannot use hot glue. Finally, a week later, we used white glue to glue actual sunflower seeds onto the flowers. This is not an instant project! My goal is to create lasting projects that take more than one class period to complete.

Elephants-- Pre-K Collage Group Project

The pre-k rooms in my school have three tables at which all students sit, so I created three stations--two stamping stations, and one "rolling" station where we used decorative foam rollers.  We used whole sheets of random colored  9 x 12 construction paper, and didn't bother to put student names on them.  Afterwards, I cut all of the sheets into 2 inch squares, drew 4 large elephants (about 4 ft x 2 ft) and quickly drafted  a 2 inch grid on all of them.  The students made small alphabet books, using the arty mosaic squares on the covers, and then we made 2 elephants per class as group projects, using glue sticks. Both were easy and engaging projects.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Beginning Watercolor Artists: Second Grade--Paint the Background Only

I wanted the students to try painting on one side of the line--in this case--the outside! The background is often ignored and appears as a big, white expanse. I wanted the students to realize the importance of the page and all that is on it. Many went over the line--and got good results.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

I'm ba-ack......

It's been a while, since I last wrote.  I left my middle/high school teaching position, and started a bread business. A bread business?

Not so fast.

I was interested in baking for a long time, and had baked cakes and cookies for our local health food store for several years before going back to school to become a teacher. Fast forward about 11 years, my parents both passed away, and I worried about fitting it all in before I kicked the bucket. My husband, who thinks anything is possible if you work hard at it, encouraged me to seriously start the bread business. He re-configured the "paint room" in his wood shop, built a hallway to the exterior of the building, and researched and bought the used equipment needed to bake bread.  (short version, leaving out the problems with electricity and my love of bread).

I taught for a year while I baked bread, created the graphics, designed the website, and worked on the recipes...and realized that I could not do both at the same time.

I used a student's drawing of the Amalfi Coast on this label.

I had a accumulated weekly orders from 6 or 7 small stores at the time, so I felt that I could leave a stable job at a really nice, little school to bake full time, and further develop my business.

Over time, I reached a weekly high of about 200 loaves of bread per week. Randomly, I baked as many as 300--during all time winter lows, 125. With all of that "alone time" I learned a lot about bread, and a lot about myself. I truly believe that life is short and I understand now why I was trying to fit it all in.

One critical thing was missing--PEOPLE!!

Personality tests tell me I am a borderline introvert/extrovert. If I could spend half of my time with people, and half without-- would that be ideal?

I was very lucky to be able to return to my nice, little school, to teach pre-K through 4th grade art.
Two days of art teaching. Two days of baking. One day of bread deliveries and cleaning the bakery.

The teaching continues.
The bread baking continues.
The blog continues.....

Making+ doing+ sharing=♥
I couldn't do any of it without people--students, customers, shop and restaurant owners, 
faculty, friends and family. Thank you all.