September 27, 2015

Sunday Devotional With Mr. E: HAPPY FALL Y'ALL!

Praise the Lord!  Praise the Lord from the heavens; Praise Him in the heights!  Praise Him, all His angels; Praise Him, all His hosts!  Praise Him, sun and moon' Praise Him, all stars of light!  Praise Him, highest heavens, and the waters that are above the heavens!  Let them praise the name of the Lord, for He commanded and they were created. 

Psalms 148: 1-5

Andy Goldsworthy

The earthworks art of Andy Goldsworthy has always resonated with me.  I grew up in the middle of a forest, and his work transports me "home".  I especially love his pieces utilizing fall leaves.  The amazing palette that nature creates & how Goldsworthy placed them produces a sense of awe & wonder. His goal & the goal of many earthworks artists 
was to bring attention to nature through their art.

When we look at the verses from Psalms 148, we see that nature's goal is not to bring attention to itself, but to bring glory to the Father.  Nature was never meant to be praised, but to point us to The One who created it.   Fall truly is my favorite time of the year: cooler weather, sweatshirts, Pumpkin Spice....EVERYTHING, the beautiful leaves changing colors, and Thanksgiving. It is extremely easy to get caught up in the excitement of the season, to become distracted,  and to focus on the created & not The Creator.   However, my prayer is that the brisk morning air & brilliant colors on display will usher us into the presence of God.  That nature will point us to the Father...and we will be compelled to praise Him for who He is, what He has done, and all that He has made.  

Dear Lord, 
We praise You for who You are...
for all that you have made...
and for the many blessings we  have in our life!
May nature be Your calling card...that we cannot deny you & how awesome you are!  May fall be a time of renewing for our hearts & minds in You!

In Christ's Name, Amen

September 25, 2015

Artober Nashville: Modular Art Wall


Artober Nashville is almost upon us, and things here at Tulip Grove are kicking into high gear(even though we're only a week away from the end of the nine weeks & fall break).  Last year I had a community art project that we worked on at our Fall Festival.  You may remember our Kandinsky fence....if not look up Kandinsky in the word cloud to the right hand column.  

This year, someone donated sound proof ceiling tiles to our district's art teachers!?!?!  Odd...but exciting!!  Sometimes I see possibilities before I know how to actually follow through with things?!!? ha ha  I envisioned an ever changing art wall made from cubes.  The tiles were bigger & heavier than I imagined.  I first tried Liquid Nails.  It worked, but has to dry for 24 hrs..and set on a flat surface.  NOBODY HAS TIME FOR THAT?!?!  Though I had my doubts about hot gluing it (because of the weight)...I tried it.  AND IT WORKED!!  Now I went through a lot of hot glue sticks, but they seem very sturdy after double seaming it.  

I then tried different paint on the surface.  Tempera worked, but it took a lot of paint because of the absorbent surface(I already new acrylic would be way too expensive!!).  I then tried watercolor.  To my surprise, the watercolor really went on nicely!  It is a little light, but we might be able to go back into them later and add focal points using tempera or acrylic in small areas.  

So tonight....we have our Fall Festival.  I'll have the cubes set up in my room for parents & children...teachers & whoever else paint!!  I'm excited to see how it turns out.  

STAY TUNED!!!!!!!!! 

September 22, 2015

Practicum Student Ms. M: 4th Mood Landscapes

Ms. M is the third & final practicum student I have this cycle from MTSU.
(They almost always send 3 at a time!).  

I'm sorry I don't have any images of the the students created with Ms. M.  She did an amazing lesson using art criticism & aesthetics for a majority of the class, and then had a short studio at the end to tie everything together.  The student wrote in their journals, discussed with their neighbors, and shared in large group.  Ms. M did a great job guiding the students through this process!! 

Practicum Student Mrs. J: 1st Grade Seahorses With Pattern

Mrs. J is another practicum student from MTSU that has been spending time in my art room.  She taught a lesson to 1st grade on seahorses.  The students loved her Power Point & enjoyed working with oil pastels for the first time.  They focused on Shape & Pattern.  

Mrs. J has a great teacher voice & is very animated when she is giving instruction!  

The seahorses turned out very cute!!  I loved the variety of patterns & color!!

September 21, 2015

Practicum Student Ms.H: Lines With Kindergarten

I open my room to student teachers, practicum students, and observations every year.  I believe in helping to develop the next generation of art educators, and truly enjoy my time with them.  This looks like the first year in about a decade I'm not going to have a student teacher.  

However, right now I'm hosting 3 practicum students from MTSU.  They have been a wonderful group!  This post is about Ms. H's lesson.  She chose to work with Kindergarten.  I love when people are up for the challenge of our littlest people!!  She really did well for her first time developing a lesson plan & teaching it!  In the picture she is teaching the students about lines in a kinesthetic manner. So much fun!!

They applied the lines they learned about in a turtle drawing.  They used construction paper crayons to finish their work.  This was the first time Ms. H used them...and she LOVED them(I do too).  One of the greatest things about Ms. H....she wants to grow!!!  I love when a up & coming teacher comes humbly to the table...and just wants to learn!  She is going to learn...she is going to grow...and she is going to make a great art teacher!!

September 20, 2015

Sunday Devotional With Mr. E: Starting Small

He presented another parable to them, saying, "The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and sowed in his field; and this is smaller than all other seeds, but when it is full grown, it is larger than the garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the bird of the air come and nest in its branches."  Matthew 13: 31-32

A Kindergarten Student Starting Their Dot

International Dot Day recently passed.  It was celebrated around the world, and thousands upon thousands of students were impacted.  If you aren't familiar with the celebration, it is based off of the book by Peter Reynolds, The Dot.  The story is about a child who feels that they are not artistic & cannot draw.  With the encouragement of a wonderful art teacher, the child begins to explore art & creativity.  It is so beautiful watching the child's excitement as they explore, learn, apply, and grow.  To think that it all started with a little dot?!?!  

Often in our Christian life, we feel as if we only have a small offering to give, a tiny gift to share, or only a few moments we can spare for the church.  It seems insignificant & worthless(by human standards).  However, God is able to take the small things of this world, and grow them & use them in ways that no one ever imagined.  There was a song that we use to sing at church camp/VBS, It Only Takes  A Spark.  In the song it  talks about how a simple spark can start a fire that warms all those around.  Those little things are what God wants from us.  You truly don't know how He can use small things to impact others, change us, and bring us into a deeper relationship with Him.  It could be a smile, an afternoon helping an elderly person in your neighborhood, a few extra dollars given to a missionary or ministry, or even a listening ear for a coworker.  God's kingdom can grow through means we'd never consider(if we were in charge?!?!).  If we'd be willing to get out of the way & serve as Christ served, love as Christ loved(loves!), and give as Christ gave....maybe this "dot" of faith could grow & impact the world! 

I thank you Lord for loving me where I am.  
Lord, let me get out of the way!!  Let me give up my selfish ways.  Help me to be about your business by being about others first!  If I have only a "dot" of time/talent/resources...let me use them for Your glory....and allow You to grow them as you see fit!  My dot is enough if I give it all to you to use.  I can come to you with my humble offerings.

The Finished Work With Over 500 Students' Dots
What started with one small dot...
from one child turned into this amazing work!

September 14, 2015

DOT DAY 2015

Happy Dot Day!!!  I have activities planned for my students, but it will be taking place over the next 5 days.  My classes are set up on a 5 day rotation, and tomorrow is day 1.  I'll be posting Dot Day"ish" pictures over the next week or so!  I can't wait to see how you all celebrate!  

(I changed my background for the will go to something less dotty soon!)

September 09, 2015

You Asked For It: Details of Painting K-4 Week 1

So I posted through out the process of painting the first week of art on the ArtTeacher Facebook page, tweeted about it, and posted a couple things on here along the way.  I was hoping it wasn't "overkill", but you all asked for more.  I'm not sure I'll hit all the points that you please feel free to comment or connect with me through FB, Twitter, or E-mail.  I will tell you I don't have a "lesson plan" for this.  We are not required to write out lengthy lesson mine take place in blocks with just main ideas/important information.  


So this is what the finished product looked like.  I LOVE IT!  The kids, parents, faculty/staff loved it as well.  I believe I'll keep it up in some form all year(but not in this incarnation or in this location).  The individual sections are can click on them to see them a bit closer up if you wish.



The hanging system is not all that sophisticated.  I measured the overhang where I was "installing" them so I didn't cover up any of the circles.  I then bent coat hangers out, duct taped them to the back, and glued a sheet of paper over top of the duct tape.  Like I said...not rocket science.  They've been up for 5 days now and nothing has fallen down/apart!! So far so good!   I taped the sections together so they would not curl/turn/flap.  



You can read a few posts back on how I painted with Kindergarten.  The details are pretty good there...and I don't feel a need to repeat them.  However, if you have questions..please ask!

The first two days I used the water color for Kindergarten.  I guess watercolor is my safe place(my concentration in college).  However...after an art teacher posted she used liquid tempera on the first day of art with her class.....CHALLENGE ACCEPTED!!!!! ha ha ha  



September 06, 2015

Sunday Devotional With Mr. E: In Awe

One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek:  
that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, 
to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple.
Psalm 27:4

I can only imagine the feeling of seeing the Sistine Chapel for the first time (or really...any time!).  Even if you had no art background whatsoever, you couldn't help but be amazed.  Art has a way of inspiring us, transporting us, and leaving us in a state of awe.  So often it is an almost "religious" experience (excuse the cliche use of the religious..but it seemed fitting).  I remember the first time I saw a Van Gogh in took me to church!!  I sat down on a bench across from it, and just sat in its presence.  I studied it, watched others view it, and just tried to imprint the moment as to never lose it.  I think the Sistine Chapel might just about blow my mind.  I think another part of the equation is knowing the artist.  You don't have to have an art history background to appreciate it, but  knowing the master's hand that painted such an awe inspiring work adds a new layer of depth, understanding, and appreciation.  

Do you ever find yourself in awe of God?  I think many speak of God being "awesome" or doing "awesome" things, but I'm referring to a deeper recognition of who God is & what He has done in your life.  Does our Lord bring you to a place where you just want to linger in His presence?  The writer of Psalms 27 asks the Lord if he could dwell in the house of the Lord & gaze at His beauty.  When was the last time you wanted to "dwell & gaze" in conjunction with God?  In our fast paced world....we don't dwell anywhere well.  We are so often rushed & divided that dwelling & gazing sounds like a foreign concept.  No body has time for that?!?  But you should!  If art can bring us to a state of awe & makes us want to linger a little longer...why can't God do the same for us?  What do we need to do, change, or incorporate that would bring this about?  

If art can bring us to a state of "AWE"...shouldn't God?  He is the MASTER ARTIST!  

Lord, help me to desire to dwell in Your presence & gaze at Your beauty.
May my life reflect the awe You inspire.
The fast paced, over committed, divided, distracted life we live (even if so much of it is "good" or "good things" must come second to the joy of sitting at your feet.  
I want the request of Psalms 27:4 to be my heart, Lord!
In Christ's Name, AMEN

September 04, 2015

Rizzi Collage: 1st Grade

James Rizzi makes me smile.  He also makes my students smile.  Sometimes art is just 100% fun!  The kids were so amazed that a grown-up would make buildings with faces on it...such bright colors...and all the other eye candy in Rizzi's work.  

We had been looking at & creating cityscapes in the two weeks prior...and I felt this would be a wonderful connection for their collage work. 

This lesson is to get the NO LONGER KINDERGARTENERS/NOW 1ST GRADERS back into collage mode.  Some of the students are still not back into the swing of things, and their work is very much still kindergarten. 

I precut a variety of colors to 6in x 9in...and they select 2 different colors(I call them 3 or 4 tables at a time...because I've got them spread out over a larger table.  The rest of their paper they select from the scrap box.  You need to make sure you have policy/procedures down for scrap box stuff!!!  If not it could be ciaos.  I allow 3 tables to go to the box at a time(about 6 kids).  The other students are working at cutting out their buildings from the 2 pieces of paper they had previously selected.  This way no one is just setting around waiting.    I do not pass out glue till the last 15 min. of class.  I want students to first cut out their pieces and arrange them before gluing so there isn't any "OOPS!" and then they rip pieces off and leave a mess on their work and my tables. 

If you have any questions...let me know in the comment section and I'll try to answer them!

The building on the left TOTALLY cracks me up!!! LOVE!!!!!

This reminds me of Bob & Larry from Veggie Tales! 
Anyone else see it??

September 01, 2015

Selfie Time!

I know at the start of the school year we're doing a lot of self portraits(at least at the elementary level).  I came across this "idea" on Pinterest...and decided to make my own version!!  I know...shouldn't have made fun of poor Louise-Leopoldo Boilly, but couldn't help myself!!  Happy "Selfie" drawing...maybe you'll have a Louise to share with us!!!