My students are brand new to this building. Our school is opening for the first year ever and my kiddos are coming from schools all over. We are joining other schools on our campus to form a true community hub.
While my students may be new to this building they are continuing artists who have been working in well stocked classrooms for years.
I am so excited to build something brand new with them. Together we will create a new art program, in a new building, and help form the school culture for years to come.
We are one 9-weeks into our new school adventure together and my students are fully immersed and growing as artists. My students have drawn from observation and made expressive watercolor paintings. They have done collaborative papier-mâché projects and learned color theory. As I gain knowledge of these new students' interests and skills our yearlong art plans become fuller and more fine-tuned. As budgets are spent, many of these lofty plans have to be cut and changed to incorporate the reality of dwindling supplies and extra large classes.
Without exterior support, items like a working drying rack and screen-printing supplies simply can't be afforded this school year.
My students fill our current drying rack with two classes of work, meaning we can't all paint when we want to. We end up putting paintings on every surface in our room, making organization and safety of the artwork a nightmare. Our only drying rack was donated and is old and rickety meaning sometimes our work sticks together, making for heartbroken kiddos.
My students are also more engaged when they are doing new techniques and processes that are as mature as they are. Screen-printing is by far the most relevant of printmaking processes for older kids, but also has high start-up costs. Papier-mâché masks are so engaging for my younger students, but mask forms are expensive for even two classes of students, and are essential for good quality work. These two sets of materials, a working drying rack and art visual cards are huge helps in keeping these kids engaged all year long.
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