Sunday, November 27, 2011

Flowers in Sunshine

** I updated this entry Jan 22 2012.  I've added a video below and the web address for a slideshow of more kid's examples. **

Here's a great project that is both easy and fun.  And yes, it's an idea that comes from Donna Hughs.  The project is simple.  You paint "puddles" of color, using all colors but green, and then add a green/yellow mix in between.  

After the painting dries, I show the kids how to draw in a flower on each puddle.  I've both had the kids watch the video and do the project and simply modeled it myself.  It worked best to simply model it myself and then monitor how the kids were doing.

Since I've done this project several times, I've had experience with what can go wrong.  The area where most kids struggle is in making the flowers.  Specifically, they often don't make the pedals big enough and wide enough.  So we first practiced making them on paper (draw a circle and make a flower that is just large enough to reach the edge of the drawn circle.

Here's almost exactly what I said each time we drew the flowers.  "Put a small circle in the middle of on of your "puddles."  Now, starting from that circle, draw a line all the way to the edge of the color, go around the edge - make it wide, then go back to the circle in the middle.  Then follow the line you just made all the way to the edge of the circle again, and follow the edge of the color.  Be sure to go all the way to the edge and follow your color borders.  Use the color's edge as your guide.  You should end up with about 4 to 5 pedals."  I modeled this on an overhead projector as I gave these directions.

I really had to emphasize this process and as I drew one for them, I monitored their progress and made corrections where necessary.  Honestly, this process worked so well for me.  In the past I had so many kids making small pedals and some pedals were so small they ended up with over a dozen per flower!  I was amazed at how well the second graders did.  Here's the specific video where you can find this art project.

**Here's a video I used for instructing the kids on how to draw the flowers**

Here is a previous entry of mine.  You can see this art project among some of the other entries.  Go here.   Also, once I get the website updated, I'll add the slide show here too.     In the meantime, here are a few more examples.

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