Dec 11

Kindergarten students travel around the world

Kindergarten students who work with Miss Donathan are currently engaged in a unit called "Around the World." Each week, the students travel to different countries to learn about the art and other customs that come from those countries! To keep track of the countries they visit, students are keeping a Calliope Passport. For each country visited, the students write down the name of the country and do their very best to draw the country's flag.

So far, the students have learned about four different countries! First, they visited England and used different shapes and colors to create their own version of London Bridge. Next, they visited China and learned all about the Chinese New Year. Students created dragon puppets and made their dragons dance to Chinese music. After visiting China, the students traveled down under to the country of Australia and learned about dot paintings - a special kind of art made by the Aboriginal people there. This special kind of painting is made up entirely of small dots, and the students did an amazing job painting some famous Australian animals! This week, students are visiting the country of Mexico! Some students made their own maracas, while others used their knowledge of patterns to color beautiful Mexican mandala designs. 

The Kindergarten students have three more stops to make. They will be visiting South Africa, Egypt, and Ireland before the unit ends! They cannot wait to learn more about the people, places, and art that can be found around the world. 

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Dec 01

Second graders explore Kandinsky's colors!

Russian artist Wassily Kandinsky (pronounced VAH-silly can-DIN-sky) was a truly unique man. Many believe he may have had something called "synesthesia," a connection between his senses that actually allowed him to "see" color! His paintings certainly show this love for color; in fact, he was famous for his abstract art that celebrated how different colors often make us feel different emotions.

After a great study of Kandinsky's work, second graders got busy creating their own interpretations of one of Kandinsky's famous works, called Farbstudie Quadrate (or "Color Study in Squares"). They used rulers to create a grid of six squares, traced templates to create concentric circles, then outlined those circles with oil pastels. Then when they used water colors to paint their cirlces, the oil pastels resisted the water color and remained bright.

Second graders were also taught how to write what is known as an "artist statement" to describe their feelings about the work they did. It's a great exercise to get students more involved in their art, and as students get older, they'll be expected to do more and more of this kind of reflection. 

Beautiful job, Second Grade! 

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Nov 12

Kindergarten students learn the value of sharing

Kindergarten students who study Calliope with Miss Donathan ended their Me, Myself, & I unit by learning about how we can all be kind and share things with those around us. They began their lesson by listening carefully to "The Rainbow Fish" by author Marcus Pfister. In this story, a fish with the most beautiful scales in all of the ocean has trouble making friends because he does not want to share any of his amazingly gorgeous scales with the other fish. The Rainbow Fish quickly learns that in order to be a good friend, he must always share with others. By the end of the story, all the fish are given a special scale. The Rainbow Fish, who keeps only one scale for himself, finds happiness in giving away his most prized possessions!  

To share their artistic talents with the students at Baden Academy, the Kindergarten students used coffee filters, markers, and sprayed water to create their own Rainbow Fish scales! The scales were pieced together to create three beautiful fish, which can be found swimming happily along the wall outside the library. Stop by and check out these fantastic creations!

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Oct 22

Kindergarteners' spectacular self-portraits

Students who study Calliope with Miss Donathan have been exploring a unit called "Me, Myself, and I." After hearing several poems about faces and about how everyone is unique, their first big project was to create these self-portraits. Amazing, aren't they? 

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Oct 22

Fourth graders create some very cool op art

To show off everything they learned during their color study at the start of the year, fourth grade students created some very cool op art (optical art) projects. They began by practicing how to draw curved lines along a wobbly line, and then they moved on to using black permanent markers, which create the interesting shadow that gives these curves their three-dimensional effects.

Students then had to come up with a color scheme for their work, and the results are really quite wonderful. Kudos, fourth graders!

(And do you want to know the best comment Mrs. Kennedy heard from a student while he was working on the project? "This is really hard to do, and I love it!")


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