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Arts & Activities - Page 30
INTEGRATING the curriculum Mikhayla by Christine Kernan > L et’s face it: When introducing a new unit, we art teachers know that sometimes a little “bling” can really grab students’ attention. At least that’s one of the things I’ve learned in the 15 years I’ve been teaching elementary art. I received ooohs and aaahs from my fourth-graders when they learned they would be creating “Faux Fall Repoussé.” The dazzling shine of the aluminum foil and the beautiful array of autumnal colors were impossible for them to resist! This project incorporates organic shapes, teaches color theory inspired by nature and features a bit of a threedimensional twist. Students are also introduced to a simplified version of the French technique of repoussé, as they learn about balance, harmony and much more. This lesson also provided an opportunity to integrate my curriculum into our school’s science curriculum, as we discussed the life cycle of the tree and the process of photosynthesis. On day one, we discussed the species of trees in our state and why they change color in the fall. Each student was given a pencil, scissors, a 9" x 6" piece of cardboard and various leaves. (If you wish, handouts with leaf silhouettes drawn on them will also work.) I demonstrated how to place a leaf on top of a piece of polystyrene and trace it to create an impression. The leaf was then cut out of the polystyrene. Students were asked to choose three leaves to trace onto the polystyrene, cut them out, arrange them harmoniously onto the cardboard and use craft glue to glue them down. I also gave students the option of creating an even more raised (or 3-D) effect with two of the leaves by cutting out smaller versions and gluing them on top. Day two, I showed students a few books with examples of repoussé, and how artists have used this art form for centuries to embellish their work. The goal was to have our work mimic the repoussé style, with the leaves protruding when the children placed a piece of heavy-duty aluminum foil, slightly larger than their project, on top of their work. First, I sprayed each student’s cardboard piece lightly with spray adhesive in a well-ventilated area. After placing What lies beneath the aluminum foil. > > • • • • • • • • • • • • • Students working hard on their edges. LEARNING OBJECTIVES Upper-elementary students will . observe and examine organic shapes as a source for creating art. understand how to create balance and harmony in a composition. explore color combinations found in nature. learn about the technique of repoussé. learn about photosynthesis, the life cycle of the tree and why leaves change color in the fall. MATERIALS Pictures of repoussé art Dull pencils, permanent color markers 9" x 6" cardboard pieces Plastic spoons or wooden burnishing tools Craft glue heavy-duty aluminum foil Real leaves or handouts with silhouettes of different species of leaves Thin polystyrene sheets or plates 30 november 2012 • 80 YEARS x www.ar tsandactivities.com