Musings about the importance and impact of art and art education in the 21st century.

Musings about the importance of art and art education

It's pronounced k-l-a-y

♠ Posted by ArtMuse at 6:27 PM

Yet again perusing through google images, I came across a pre-school art lesson based on Paul Klee's Head of a Man. The round disk-like faces were filled in with goop's and gobs of paints brushed on in only single hue and its various tints and shades. Glancing at the image I had an 'aha!' moment. Now I don't teach preschool, but I immediately liked the idea and decided right there and then to use it in a lesson for some of my elementary aged students. It was very simple, they were able to do it in about an hour. In a normal classroom I would have introduced the concepts form formally, and had them do some practice exercises with mixing paint. However, because of the laid back atmosphere of the club, and the fact that the members don't have to stay in the art room if they don't want to, I did the abridged version.

Letting them use paper plates as circle templates, they traced the circle head onto their sheet of 12x 16" sheet of manilla paper. They then drew the spae of the neck and body (a rectangle lengthwise and widthwise) and then added the eyes, nose and sometimes, a mouth. They followed that by drawing shapes on the head and then used whatever color they picked mixing white or black to create new tints/shades of the color. The only problem I ran into with this lesson was that 1. they rushed and many times didn't do such a good job of painting in the lines, and 2. they would mix white to a color then mix black to the first mixture muting the color and giving it a grey tone (not good). So just as an aside, make sure you reinforce and demo how to paint and handle the brush to stay within the shape parameters, and to always wipe the brush off between mixes so as not to get a dull grey. The images was finished off by chosing the faces color compliment and painting it in. Viola! Head of a man, 2nd grade style!~

The site that I got the image, which gave me the idea for the lesson is
The site also has a bunch of other good lessons for the youngsters, so if you teach the little ones you might want to give it a look.