The Morse Art Studio's Weblog

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Cat’s tails February 28, 2013

Filed under: projects — alaplante @ 8:18 pm

This year I ended the option of “free draw” at the end of class if anyone finishes their work early.  It is wasteful of paper, and students never produce their best work with such a quick and rushed amount of time.  Instead, I decided they needed something worthwhile, collaborative, and skill based.  A cat’s tail is simple form of knitting, done on a loom.  Other names for this technique are spool knitting or french knitting.  Our looms are just toilet paper tubes and popsicle sticks.  Having the cat tails always available allows 3rd-5th graders to work on shared pieces.  Our first finished cat tail, which used the entire skein of yarn was recently finished!  Look forward to seeing more of these knitted masterpieces at the Morse School Art Show.


Check out this cute kid explaining how to do the knitting.


Book of Kells February 14, 2013

Filed under: projects — alaplante @ 3:12 pm

The 5th graders are in the middle of creating illuminated letters, complete with gold and metallic paints.  For inspiration today, students looked at many images from the Book of Kells, a beautiful Celtic manuscript from the year 800.

Have you seen the movie The Secret of Kells?  It is a fictional tale of how the famous illuminated manuscript was written.

For a more realistic view of the Book of Kells, download this iPad app.  It lets you turn through all 680 pages of text and paintings!

And here are some 5th graders at work:
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Collograph Ocean life February 13, 2013

Filed under: projects — alaplante @ 2:09 pm

The 3rd graders just finished some incredible collograph prints.  Starting with observational drawings from photographs, students translated their drawings into oak tag collographs.  The best part is printing, and experimenting with various color combinations of ink and paper.  Look forward to seeing more of these prints at the Morse School Art Show in April!

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Snowflakes on display February 12, 2013

Filed under: projects — alaplante @ 8:08 pm

Kindergarteners have their snowflakes on display at Superintendent Young’s office!  This printmaking unit emphasized the skill of line printing with cardboard.  Symmetry and patterns were the focus for each unique snowflake.  This experimental lesson was the warm up for snowflake printing.  The prints will be on display at 159 Thorndike St. until March 8th.



Intro to Cubism February 4, 2013

Filed under: projects — alaplante @ 4:20 pm

One of the many reasons I am sad to not teach middle school anymore is the loss of teaching some of my favorite projects.  One favorite project that I typically did with 8th graders was a Cubism unit focusing on the art of Picasso and David Hockney.  With the opportunity of Drawing Lab for 3rd-5th graders this year, I am thrilled that I can modify that unit for the younger students!  This week, students were given cut up sections of familiar objects, and had to puzzle the pieces together.  With careful overlapping and matching, the student created cubist versions of the objects.  This was a warm up day to the idea of Cubism; next week students will begin drawing cubist cereal boxes.  Stay tuned!

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A Paint Anything Day February 2, 2013

Filed under: projects — alaplante @ 4:15 pm

After reading Eric Carle’s, A House for Hermit Crab, the junior K students talked about how they could decorate paper the way Eric Carle does for his books.  With one huge sheet of paper per table, the kids painted anything they wanted!  Besides paint brushes, the students worked with rollers, stampers, and scrapers.  I even overheard one girl say, “this is the best Art class ever.”  The huge sheets will be used for a collage project next week.

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Fish Puzzles February 1, 2013

Filed under: projects — alaplante @ 4:13 pm

The spec. needs K/1 class recently made their own puzzles!  We are in the middle of a “games” unit, and along with the puzzles, they also have finished a “go fish” game of sponge painted fish.  For the puzzles, first we painted tissue paper onto oak tag paper.  I laminated it before the next class.  Then, the students drew a fish, being sure to include all of the necessary body parts.  The last step was cutting the drawing into pieces.  Look for these puzzles at the Morse School Art Show in April!

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