chalk pastels

One Animal, Four Views, An Art Enrichment Sneak Peak!

One Animal, four views!

My early morning Art Enrichment students, have been busy creating these beautiful pastel drawings. After choosing one animal, students got started drawing four interesting views. Students used ipads to creatively crop photos and choose interesting views of their animal. After drawing the animals shape, students began adding details and visual texture.


Our 5th graders took creative and interesting perspectives while creating their animals.  Close up, you get an abstract, larger than life view of features like the animals eye, texture, or leg and arm. The pieces, come together to create the animals identity.  Enjoy this sneak peak of our AE students work, I will post more photos next week.


Here are some projects in progress.

Emily G Eve

Raccoon Portraits created by 1D

We began this lesson by becoming animal detectives. We followed each clue to figure out what animal we would use as the inspiration for our next art project. The only rule was, we had to keep our guess in our heads until the very last clue. When students got to share, they all guessed a raccoon. Our first graders made excellent detectives!

We created each feature of our raccoon by using geometric shapes. A circle head and eyes, an oval for our ears, and a tear drop shape for our noes and mask.  It’s so cool use geometric shapes to create realistic forms.

We have been learning about 2 different kinds of texture in art and even learned a song and hand motions to help us remember them. I got this fun song and activity from Mini Matisse. I encourage your first graders to share this song with you, it’s so cute.

“Visual texture is texture you can see, tactile texture is texture your can touch!” 

We worked in chalk pastel and oil pastel to make our raccoon look like they might feel in real life. To create visual texture, we used a variety of lines and value.

Allan Emma Lucas Maddie

Our first graders have been studying mammals and their habitats so this lesson was a great connection.

Each raccoon is so unique and special, I love the personality coming from each one!

5th Grade, Giving Trees

Our 5th grade artists find inspiration in nature and the trees.

The last of our autumn projects is here, just in time for the cool weather. This year, our 5th graders gained inspiration from 1 of 10 tree surrounding TG. It was fun seeing what tree each student chose and the personal connection they shared for it. Some trees were full of leaves while others stood bare.  It was neat seeing the transformation as it happened in nature and in our artwork.

(Observing nature in all its beauty)

When we were studying the textures and patterns in nature, we went outside and drew from life. We used a variety of lines and patterns to created the texture in our bark, leaves, grass and sky. These sketches aided in our final tree drawings.

Tree studies in progress

With our contour lines and texture added, we got to work adding color. This was the final stage in bringing our trees to life. We added color through the use of chalk pastels. This was done through the soft blending of colors, and the use of warm and cool colors. Our students did a great job of balancing the exciting vivid warm colors and calm and relaxing cool colors. I just love these trees and can’t wait to walk by them everyday on my way in and out of the art room.

Each tree is unique and full of personality just like the artists that created them.

Enjoy exploring!

Great art picks up where nature ends.”  Marc Chagall

Klee Castles, 2nd Grade

Paul KleePaul Klee was born into a musical family, but chose to be an artist. For more than 40 years, he created art that displayed his love for color, line, music, and children’s artwork. One things for sure, Paul Klee would love our interpretation of his, “Castle and sun.”  We learned that Paul Klee created abstract art which means art that does not attempt to represent recognizable reality but seeks to achieve it’s effect using shapes, form, color, and texture.

We began this lesson by playing. Each table was given a set of blocks to use, with the goal of working together to build something. When all the blocks had been used, we went around the room to share what we had made. I heard things like castles, bridges, and skyscrapers.

These pictures were taken upon the completion of the lesson during free art time. My 2nd graders loved playing with blocks. castle and sun

Paul Klee, Castle and sun, 1928

Before we were given the title of this (above) painting, students used there observational skills to share what they saw. We noticed shapes and lines, and colors and even took a guess at the subject matter.

We used Paul Klee’s quotes,  “A line is a dot that went for a walk.” to get started drawing the roof line of our castle. Next, we drew the doors and windows of our castle. We learned that they can vary in size and shape, and even looked at Paul Klee’s shapes for inspiration. Using our black oil pastel, we also created flags on the top of our castle. Then, we used vertical lines (up and down) and horizontal lines (across, left to right) to divide and create shapes inside our castle. We used brand new chalk pastels to add colors inside our shapes. Students loved blending colors and learning how to control his magical medium.

Here is a look at 2B-D’s castles, 2C will get started on this project this Friday! Since the Book Fair is beginning this week, and the theme is “Sir Readalot’s Castle,” these 2nd grade castles will look great on display. Look out for 2C’s castle creations coming soon.

Paul Klee inspired

3C’s, 3D Flower Still-lifes

3rd Graders in Ms. Cohn’s class just finished these beautiful 3 dimensional flowers in a vase. Take a look!

flowers 3rd displayWe began by learning that a still life is an arrangement of inanimate objects, such as fruit or flowers. We even looked at a famous flower painting by Vincent Van Gogh titled, Sunflowers. In addition to creating 3 dimension on a 2 dimensional surface, students also worked in the round to create flowers that actually came out into space.

We began by learning how to create a 3D sunflower using Model Magic. Students used a bowl to create the shape and tools to create texture. Once complete, students moved on to creating 3 other flowers of their choice. They could be as imaginative or realistic as they wanted. Our 3rd graders rendering their vases and backgrounds with chalk pastels using lights and darks in their design to create form and depth. They experimented with color blending to create value both with chalk pastels and acrylic and tempera cakes. A collection of still life’s are currently on display outside the art room! Enjoy


Autumn Tree Studies


5L tree studies shown together. I loved how each students personality and unique use of mark making came out in these. 

Our 5th Graders have been busy studying trees! This lesson has easily become one of my favorites. My fifth graders would agree they have loved watching their trees take shape.


I love the expressive use of line in Maggie and Annabel’s tree studies! 

Students began their drawings by blocking in the shapes of their trees. They then began adding details through the texture of their trunk, branches, and leaves. We added value through the use of charcoal and chalk pastels. While we were drawing our trees in art, 5th graders were also exploring autumn trees in Music. After going on a nature walk, students wrote about what they saw, heard, and felt.  I can’t wait to show you our 5th graders poems and drawings on display together.