Sunday, March 20, 2011

Art and Heart

The rainbows turned out soo wonderful...I tell the parents that they're 'frame-able'. They are so clean and look like the ones you see in craft books. I sponged the paint onto the kid's hands instead of letting them plop the hands into the paint. ALL the kids present that morning did one! If they're not all claimed I'm taking one home with me to scan. I think one should be kept by the daycare's director since she taught these kiddos for awhile (ok, just over a year prior to me coming in). I've decided that I'll do the same technique with my grandkiddos...and this time remember to put their names under their handprints.
The Leprechaun traps were semi-successful, lots of glitter and sparkles. Everywhere. Only one child refused to make one. Even with a partner. When the 'leprechaun' came and left a shamrock & St. Pat's day pencil in each trap he didn't get one. Thankfully he was at kindergarten when the 'visit' happened so he only saw the treats. I went looking for his lunch kit to put the stuff into but it must've been in his backpack and I couldn't get to it. He asked and I reminded him that he didn't want to make one. He didn't say anything. I felt conflicted because he needs to learn consequences and he also needs to be remembered. His overall behaviour is not endearing, which is heart wrenching in itself, but really, I can't indulge him either because he already gets that to some type of degree.
Thursday they painted Blarney Stones--Arborite samples from Home Depot. The clerk told me to take 4-5 of the ones I wanted. She thought I was looking for my house. I do but they made cheap 'stones'. I had enough from two trips for some kids to make 2 or more. They weren't 'frame-able' but not every product needs to be.
Friday's art project was more about the process than the product. Paint and wax crayons combined with paint sample chips (the Disney colours have Mickey's head shaped chips). It was a class project, meaning that there was one large sheet of paper that everyone that wanted to painted/drew on. The paint chips were glued on with paint. I found some things that when dragged across the paint left designed so that gave the project more texture. It looked better at a distance but still looked like a bunch of little kids got into the paint pots and let loose. Yes, it was more about the process than the project. I plan a few of those every couple of weeks.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Preschoolers-crafts and art

Since starting with this daycare I've done the 'craft' portion of the day and lately I've had the children whining that they don't want to do it. Granted not all the projects were mind blowing great, but I thought were interesting for their age group.
Today I only had one refuse (a six year old who runs, hides & curls up when things aren't going his way) until I told him something. I think I wouldn't let him play hockey (yes, indoors) or something. When he sat down he again whined and asked why he had to do crafts. I said that he wasn't doing a craft today, but art. His reaction was very interesting, he appeared to be now interested in participating. I wasn't conning him, it really was art--they had to mix yellow and blue paint to make the green they needed to sponge onto a piece of paper. After the paint dried they traced around a shamrock shape and then cut it out. This was an art class-learning about colour mixing (I had paint sample cards and would asked them which greens had more yellow or blue in them), they used a technique that they don't often use (using a sponge) and decided on how much of their large white paper to cover and how to apply the paint (some actually sponged and others smeared the paint with the sponge). They had to wait until it dried before doing the next two steps. We discovered that the pencil didn't really show up on top of the paint so they flipped the paper over and had to line up the template so that it took in the most painted part of the paper and then cut out the shamrock.

So, I wonder if they are tired of creating junk (they may not be able to articulate it but find themselves reluctant to do something that really isn't useful). The conundrum is a very limited budget, easily disengaged children that if not involved in something positive, will cause chaos in the classroom and I really cannot do a labour intensive project EVERY day. I can only have 4 children at a time doing the project since they seem to need a lot of guidance for these activities. I have spent most of a morning just getting everyone through a project--for example the paper making project. All they had to do was slop wet pulp onto a small screen and roll the water out and then place it on the drying rack. I could only do one at a time though I had 2 at the table. I didn't have trouble getting the whiners to do it. I only had one refuse and since by then I was tired and had miscounted the number of screens I needed, let it slide.

Tomorrow is a handprint rainbow. I think we'll just use 4 colours/4 handprints. hmmm could make this into a co-operating project, 2 kids, 4 hands = 4 colours. They each help another person create their 4 colour rainbow. Yes! That would work. Maybe.

I'll see.