This is a new project for us this year and as much as I loved it, I think that the little artists loved it even more! It was amazing to see the little 2nd grade artists take this project so seriously, close their eyes to visualize outside places dear to their hearts and so willingly create art with such personal meaning. It was also an amazing catalyst for discussion and sharing among the tiny artists. I think that we all need to draw on our inner Alma Thomas right now, “Through color I have sought to concentrate on beauty and happiness, rather than on man’s inhumanity to man.” This is an amazing project to consider for Black History Month (Alma Thomas is incredibly inspiring!) or anytime! I let my kiddos select their artwork for our Spring art show; this one is going to be tough to beat! This lesson can certainly be done with older artists (I did it with 2nd grade) and could even be very beneficial for levels above the elementary level! Included in this lesson:
-Sample 2nd grade visual arts standards from www.nationalartsstandards.org
-EQ (Essential Question)
-Detailed written instructions
-Lots of project photos and process photos
-Link to my PowerPoint to introduce Alma Thomas to my students.
-Link to my unlisted Youtube video (which can be used for clarification or even to play for your students to follow along with!)
-Self-reflection rubric for students (can also be used as a standard grading rubric)
-Discussion / Reflection Ideas.
-Good white paper (watercolor highly recommended, but strong white sulphite or similar which can handle paint will work; we used a sturdy Blick white sulphite drawing paper this year, but will switch to watercolor paper next time around)
-Paintbrushes (variety of shapes optional, flat tip would be ideal)
-Watercolor or tempera cake paint (or other ‘watery’ paint)
-Liquid tempera, acrylic or craft paint (thicker liquid paint)
-Squeeze bottles of white and black liquid paint (optional, for creating tints and shades if desired)
-Small rectangular matboard pieces (optional but highly recommended; for adding wide paint ‘strokes’ on second layer)
Thank you for considering this lesson from the classroom of Claire Dunaway Cyr!