I teach Pr-K through 5th grade art in two schools. By the end of the school year, I want my students to have had experiences in a wide variety of art media. My biggest challenge in getting them there is budget constraints.
My two schools have a wide variety of students from every socioeconomic level.
There has been an increase in students at the lower socioeconomic level in the past few years at both of my schools. I find, though, that almost all students, no matter what their background, love learning about and creating art. Creating new projects in art class is the highlight of many students' week, especially when they get to work in clay and in weaving. I love teaching art at the elementary level because kids this age are so creative and willing to try new things.
I plan to teach a unit on Native American art to several grade levels at both schools. We will look at photos of Navajo rugs and discuss how the elements and principles of design were used to create their incredible designs. Students will learn how the Navajo created their weaving, from the spinning and dying of the wool to the weaving process and then students will use the yarn I've requested to create their own weaving on a simple cardboard loom. We will also look at photos and perhaps video of Pueblo pottery, especially work by Maria Martinez, discussing the process of creating pottery and the designing of the motifs on the pottery. Students will then create pottery of their own and use the glazes I've requested to finish the work.
My students lives will be changed by learning about art from another culture and having the sheer joy of creating a work of art of their own.
The yarn and glaze I'm requesting will enable hundreds of kids to create their own pottery and weaving. Ceramics and weaving are my students' favorite mediums, but are also one of the most expensive projects. The yarn and glaze I'm requesting will enable me to teach these lessons and make my students very happy.
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