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

Musings about the importance of art and art education

4th Grade Jellyfish

♠ Posted by ArtMuse in ,, at 6:30 PM

I just love these jellies!!!

I taught and posted this lesson 3 years ago and originally found the project from the blog "Create Art with ME".  the only main difference this time around was that I made the paper 16x20 instead of 12x18".

Generally speaking, one of my main goals as an art teacher isn't to have my students create artwork that is "pretty".  For me, the process is just as, if not more, important than the product. But I'd also be lying if I said it wasn't important that teachers have artwork the want to display in their rooms, that parents want to hang in their homes (besides on the fridge), and that students are proud to show off.  Essentially, this boils down to having the conventional "pretty" or better yet, "beautiful" art. This project is one of those...sort of.

 It's fairly light on content and doesn't require a lot of higher order thinking, but does teach certain art vital art concepts such as value, tints, shades, opacity and transparency, and also although simple in nature, gives the kids the chance to work with two of the most fun materials in art: paint and chalk pastels.

It's the type of project where everyone ends up happy, and quite frankly, it's good to have a few projects like these in your repertoire, especially now that we're coming up of Spring Open house nights!

Here's how the project went down (each period is 40 minutes)
Day 1-Drawing the background by separating the white paper into about 7 shapes using either wavy , curving,  or straight lines and/or concentric circles. The paper can be held horizontal or vertical. After a demonstartion, the kids start painting tints of blue.
Day 2- Demonstrate mixing shades of blue and have the students complete the painting portion of the lesson.
Day 3- Practice day-Demonstrate how to draw jellyfish and color, keeping them semi-transparent, and then have the kids practice drawing and coloring with the chalks.
Day 4-5 Work on the good copy, drawing sand/rock for the bottom of the ocean  adding details like coral, seaweed, other types of underwater creatures, and at least 4 jellyfish.

The project could also tie in with something science based as it makes for a great jumping off point to learn about underwater sea life and jellyfish.  It sparked a few questions from my students I had to google to find the answer to!


Was everything done with chalk besides the blue water?

Yup, The background was done with blue, black and white Tempera paint and the rest was done with Chalk pastel.