Yippee! A different group of grade 4s today! With a slight breeze, spilling the leaves off of the autumn trees on a beautiful blue-sky day, what better topic than looking CLOSE UP at autumn leaves. I like the format, in elementary art instruction, of always reflecting, depicting, composing and expression…the full dish every afternoon!
We reflected on some images, a leaf I had picked up on the sidewalk outdoors and a few Youtube videos.
Mark Hamblin photo
From the reflection time, we watched a step by step video, very simplistic in nature, about the venation structures of leaves. We then spent about ten minutes drawing our studies.
I handed out a photo copy of the patterned piece that my readers can view below. I talked to the students about how artists use view finders to eliminate some of the busy information in their subject. I had them trace their Be Great cards somewhere on the composition below to decide on one part that they wanted to use as a reference for their own art making. I took the students through these steps, using my own as an example.
I would use tempera paint blocks for the next part of the lesson, unless nice quality paper was available to you. Using white bond drawing paper did not provide the tooth OR the body for highly successful water colour. However, we forged ahead and the students DID practice wet-on-wet technique successfully, to cover their entire composition with a ground of warm colours; yellow, orange and red.
These little Lunchable trays have become my favourite…a bit of water in one section and a squeeze of a bit of water colour pigment in each of the others.
From there, they used a variety of water based felt markers to achieve a number of drawings based on their small rectangular section. Enlarging anything at this age, is tricky! So, rest assured, if you see only relative success in this aspect of the lesson, it is to be expected. If the depictions in marker are very teeny, just steer the students to discovery by pointing out aspects of their reference and if still a problem, engage them in an inventive piece including many leaves instead of just a few.
Demonstrate how MACRO cell texture can be arrived by ‘doodling’ squiggly lines between the veins. A fun learning experience for me and for the students! Thanks, Colleen for your class! I turned on Vivaldi’s Autumn and it all began.