Monday, October 22, 2012

Big, Messy, Fearless Owls - Part 1

My nerdy owl sample

I have nagged - I mean, offered my services - to S's 4th grade teacher this year as an art teacher twice a month.  I am so very happy that she took me up on it as I am having a blast coming up with lesson plans and working with the class.  Although I AM spending way too much time on Pinterest - purely for lesson plan research, I assure you. And that is where I saw these WONDERFUL charcoal and pastel owls on Art Dish with MJ.  I just HAD to do this  with the kids, especially after I found out that they were reading Guardians of Ga'hoole, and it's Fall, and I just REALLY wanted to do this project.

Starting another owl sample

I even gave Miss L several different owl project idea examples and this is the one she really liked too.  But then she said, "It looks hard however".  I assured her, "Oh no, no, I can teach the kids...".  But in reality I have NOT worked with charcoal much at all and (shhhhh....pastel chalk is not my favorite medium).  But I REALLY wanted to make these owls!

My barn owl sample

So I gathered my trusty crew of guinea pigs - my 3 art maniac children - two days before I was to give the lesson (yes, procrastination is my middle name) and we sat down to see if this project was actually going to be possible.

Working on big messy owl samples for me
R helping me with owl sample
Peelu helping with my samples

S & R are twins and this is the first year that we have separated them into different classes.  SO far they are doing just fine with that.  But R was not so happy that I was doing an art class for S's and not her class.  So I made sure to have her help with the samples and asked if I could share her finished owl as well.  That appeased her for the moment....

Peelu's first sample owl

Peelu had already helped me earlier and made the above owl.  I thought it was pretty funny.  And she of course insisted on making another owl with her older siblings.

Peelu's second very colorful sample

Peelu exemplified the reason I am not a huge fan of charcoal or pastels - they are messy.  But, I have to say, this lesson changed the way I feel about chalks as these darn owls were addicting once we started going and they came out so easy and quickly.  I LOVED IT!

S's Sample Owl

S's completed owl sample is above and R's is below.  As I was making my second sample and helping the kids with theirs, I would stop and scribble furiously the directions I had just given them.  Then I'd figure out something else I should add for teaching purposes and I'd scribble that down too.  These were my how-to-give-the-lesson notes.  HA!  They were written in crayon on a scrap piece of paper with chalk and charcoal smudges all over it.  I look like a professional alright!

R's Sample Owl

I had all of us practice on some inexpensive textured charcoal paper 9x12 size.  But then I realized I needed a good sample on the paper that the class would be using and of course to make sure it would still turn out okay on different paper.  So I grabbed a blank 12x18 white construction paper that they have at school and made my big sample.

My BIG sample owl

I must say that I am amazed how easy it was to make such a bold an fun piece of art.  And addicting - did I say addicting - I think by the end of it I had made 5 or 6 "samples" on my own.  But now....can I teach this to other kids?

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