Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Clay Jewelry Dish

Our elementary school art program decided to change our clay project for 2nd grade this year.  We are now teaching the students how to make a jewelry dish with lace impressions and a heart.

First, roll out a 1/4-1/2 inch slab of clay per student.  Make sure you use the clay clothes to roll and put clay on as you prepare.  Use the blue bowls to make sure your clay is the right size, with enough left over to use the small heart cookie cutters to create your heart.

Before the students cut their bowl and heart out, have them do their lace impressions.

After they have covered their clay with lace impressions have the adult helpers place their bowl and heart cutter and let the students cut them out.

Don't remove the clay dish yet, but do remove the heart and have them score the back with a plastic knife.  Then score the dish where the heart will go.

Using slip (as mall mixture of water and a dime size amount of clay) wet the scored areas and "glue" the heart to the the heart firmly for the students when picking up the dish.

Now all the adult helpers can go around collecting the clay dish and put it in the red bowls to give it a jewelry dish curved form.

The jewelry dishes can be removed from the red bowls and will keep their shape after 4 or 5 days.

Don't forget to put the students name or number on the bottom...have adults do this!

I let the students play with their extra clay and then collected it all and "squashed" it down in the bag so the students could see how it would go to be used in another class!

Friday, May 25, 2012

Custom Cupcakes

There is a little girl that will turn 7 tomorrow!  She is very creative and already has her own sense of style.  A regular cupcake just won't do.  Since she has invited her whole class to her party, we need custom cupcakes at grocery store prices!

Your local warehouse store will make plain frosted cupcakes for you!  I ordered some with white buttercream frosting, yum!  My daughter chose candy in the colors of her party at our local Wal-Mart.

I spent about 10 minutes decorating and now have beautiful custom cupcakes for cheap!

Sunday, April 29, 2012

A New Reason to Blog

I know it has been forever since I have posted anything on my blog.  I do have a new reason for posting...directions and examples for art projects that I have done.  My good friend Sunny and I are always collaborating on different art projects to teach in our children's classes.  She has come up with some excellent ideas that I have then taught in my kids classes.  We have some awesome parents at our school, who like me, are always looking for some new projects to teach.  I am posting new projects so that they can easily see step by step examples on how to teach the art!  Collaboration is brilliant!

Andy Warhol Art Project

Andy Warhol Print Project

Andy Warhol is a famous American painter who became known for his contributions to the Pop Art movement.  He took everyday items that you could find anywhere and turned them into mass produced art.  He used the process of printmaking to create enough art pieces for the masses to buy.  He is most famous for his prints of Campbell’s Soup Cans, Marilyn Monroe, and Coca-Cola bottles.  Warhol believed if one looks great why not make a hundred on the same piece of art.  He wanted to focus attention on the American icons of everyday life.
Below you will find the step by step instructions to create your own printmaking project of a soup can that can be done with a Styrofoam plate, paint and a brush.  This is a great way for kids to experience and understand the idea of printmaking and the ability of producing more than one piece of art from their own creation.
I recommend this project for 4th, 5th, and 6th grade students.
2-3 styrofoam plates per student
Black tempera paint
Sponge brushes
Container to put paint in.
4 and a half by 5 inch pieces of bright colored paper (5-6 per student)
Scrap paper pieces, 1 per student
1.        First draw a large soup can on the board for the class to see.  Go over where to put the lines to make it resemble a can, the circle in the center, and lines to the sides.  Also, have the students put some designs in the circle and at the bottom of the can.
2.      Have the students trace the soup can stencil on a scrap piece of paper and practice printing the word Tomato on the top part of the can and Soup on the bottom part of the can…backwards.  This is the hardest part for the students and this is why I have them do a practice paper first.  I draw the words on my soup can on the board backwards so the students can copy what I write.

3.      After they feel confident with their practice paper, I pass out a plate to each kid and have them trace the stencil and draw their can and details on the plate.  I explain that you must press hard to get a good indention on the plate, but not so hard they poke a hole in it.
4.      When they show me they are finished with this step I give them a sponge brush and black tempera paint to get started.  Students can share the paint and brushes. 

5.      They need to put paint at the top of the plate and with movements only going down, paint over the impressed drawing.  Once it is painted they take one of their pieces of paper( I used a 4 and a half by 5 inch piece of bright colored construction paper) and had the kids press a piece over their painted area.  Make sure they put their names on the back of their pieces of paper. After pressing lightly, they can pull it up by a corner and see what they created.

6.      Sometimes it doesn’t turn out great.  Have the students press their lines again with their pencil, or they may just need to start over on a new plate.  I would make sure you have 2-3 plates per kid.
7.      The goal is to get 3 finished prints from each student.  Then I mounted them on a piece of black construction paper (you can see the stencil I made for the students to use.  I made 20 so they could share them).

Monday, August 29, 2011


Wow!  The kids are off to their first day of school!  Well, I can tell you what I will be doing with a tiny bit of my extra free time…I will be browsing around Pinterest.  It is this new site my good friend Sunny told me about and she warned me.  She said, “It is addicting”.  I didn’t believe her…but then I got hooked…and then I found the app for my iphone…I am totally addicted!
It is a wonderful site to organize all the lovely things we find on the internet.  I mostly love the creativity of it: finding crafts to make, new recipes, and kids art projects!  The best part is that it is totally for the visual learner, that’s me!  You save any ideas you find on “boards” and then you have a pic of each thing you save, no more searching when you forgot the name of the recipe!
So try it out if you like, it is a great way to pick areas to search in and not have to go through endless blog searches!

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Saturday, August 27, 2011

Happy Back to School Teacher Gifts

The summer flew by so fast and now it is time to head back to school!  I found some great ideas for teacher gifts and started with an adorable idea for an insulated cup (they are all the rage) that can be found for $5 at Wal-Mart.  I then filled it with some lemonade drink packets and a small bag of cookies.  The tag says, “Thank you for quenching my thirst for knowledge”.  The kids had “Meet the Teacher” day on Friday morning, so they met their teacher and then handed them each a cup.  They were a huge hit!

I also like to do practical gifts.  Due to the budget crisis our teachers have NO money to spend on basic classroom supplies and have to reach into their own pockets for stuff like Kleenex, copy paper, and paper towels.  On the first day of school each one of my kids will go with boxes of Kleenex for their teachers.  My son is also giving his teacher note cards for speeches they will be working on.  It is always nice to send extra school supplies; some kids never bring them or can’t afford them.

My daughter’s teacher is teaching an apple unit for the first week of school!  She is very excited and couldn’t wait to pick out her apple at the grocery store.  I also went ahead and picked out five different apples; being sure to leave the stickers on them to let the teacher know which ones they were.  I then painted her initial on a canvas re-usable lunch bag, put the apples in, and tied it with a cute ribbon.  Now she has extras for the kids that don’t bring them to school!

Happy Back to School!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

New Things and a Recipe

I have 2 new favorite things!  The first one is something I am sure most of you have, but for some reason I have been in the culinary dark ages and have never had one until recently.  My parents gave me a food processor for my birthday!  I had no idea how much I would use it.  I have used it to make salsa, fine crumble sausages for pizza, and make zucchini bread.  The shredding attachment is my favorite and I will never shred the old fashioned way again!
My other favorite thing is a new apron!  I don’t usually use aprons to cook, being an artist I wear them to protect my clothes while painting or teaching art.  I ruined way too many clothes in college and found out that a cheery apron with some style makes me happy while I work.  I found this new one in the clearance section at Marshall’s!  Perfect to use cooking and starting the new school year teaching art in my kid’s classes!
Zucchini Bread
3 eggs
1 ½ cup sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
1 Tablespoon vanilla
2 cup grated unpeeled zucchini
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
½ teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon cinnamon
1 cup chopped walnuts
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray two 9 “loaf pans with cooking oil. In a large bowl, beat eggs until frothy.  Beat in sugar, oil and vanilla until thick and lemon-colored. Stir in zucchini. Sift dry ingredients and stir into the batter. Fold in the nuts. Pour into prepared pans. Bake 40 minutes or until center springs back when touched. Cool 10 minutes before turning out on to racks. These freeze well.