Sunday, September 14, 2014

Bingo Marker Art

I stopped at a Dollar Tree last week and on a whim, threw a bingo marker in my already too full basket, thinking it might work well for some Dot Day artwork with my kids. It was a big hit! My youngest (15 months old) had fun playing with it until almost 4 year old saw it and wanted a turn. 

"Look, mommy, it's prickly!" (It does make super cool splatters)
"I'm drawing flowers. Now I'll draw a stem."
"Should I make a road?"
I gave him another piece of paper since he had pretty much filled the first.
"I'll make a fence. I need boards to hold it up. Now I'll make boards that go up and down."
"Now I'll make more flowers."
"Should I make a truck? A big truck. I need lots of wheels for the heavy load."

This age is so fun! I love the narration as he works. The next time I can swing by a Dollar Tree, I'll be checking for bingo markers in other colors!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Dot Day 2014

Are you celebrating International Dot Day? Dot Day celebrates creativity, courage, and collaboration and is inspired by Peter H. Reynolds' book, "The Dot". This has become a tradition at school and I'm excited that this year our new librarian joined in! She read The Dot to K-3rd grade and they did some "dot" activities in library. It's nice to collaborate!
 I wanted to share my Dot Day bulletin board since it has an overview of our activities with each grade. I'll be posting more details about those projects some day when I get around to it. :)
The background for the "Dot Day" sign was a circle painting made by some 1st-3rd grade students. The Vashti cutout was made for my YAM bulletin board a couple years ago and she's been hanging out in the art room ever since, occasionally making an appearance in the hallway.

We're learning about India this fall so I tied the 3rd grader's dots to rangoli. They turned out really cool and have been a popular project, of course any project that lets the students use glue and sand is a pretty sure thing.
2nd grade's mixed media dots were the most open this year.
1st grade dots were circles filled with patterns, and boy did some kids make it a lot harder than it needed to be! I should have encouraged the students to focus on making one big dot since many drew a ton and then got tired of working on it half way through.
 I decided before I start TAB-ing with Kindergarten, I want to cover a lot of basics. In this first project they practiced writing their names and initials, traced a can, learned about and drew lines, cut a round shape, and used a glue stick. Now they've practiced making different kinds of lines with a paintbrush, "dipped the tip", and explored color mixing. 
I was given a ton of used crayons so I picked out some that looked nice and used them to make a Dot Day decoration. I feel a little guilty using crayons with so much life to make a decoration, but I was given about 10 gallons of crayons so I hope these won't be missed.
I can't wait to read about other teacher's Dot Day activities. I already read one hilarious account this evening that left me literally laughing out loud (LLOL?) and made me want to try out the project. Thanks for the laugh, Cassie Stephens! See her post here:

If you don't own The Dot, get your copy now! You don't even have to use my affiliate link, I just figured it might be a convenience for someone! I got the Creatrilogy for my birthday a few years ago and I treasure it. Thanks, Mom! :)

Saturday, September 6, 2014

$2 Bulletin Board Makeover

 When I got permission to use the bulletin board at one of my schools a few years ago, I was quick to paint the background so I could avoid having to cover it with butcher paper every time. It was time to repaint it this school year so I chose a yellow paint that let some of the old design show through. However, the new board color and the new wall color around it, made the old teal frame clash even more. I grabbed a bottle of glossy black acrylic paint and an hour later had a nice black frame. It looks SO much better now. I don't know why I waited 3 years to get around to it!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Earning my way to NAEA (2016)

I posted a while back about my goal to raise enough money to cover a trip to Chicago for the 2016 NAEA convention. Here's what I've been working on to earn my way! I started making custom classroom signs over the summer. That lead the way to signs for offices, dorm rooms, kids rooms, etc. My dad cuts the boards for me, my husband drills the holes (I stink at drilling on my mark), and I sand, design, and paint. It's been a lot of fun to do. Sometimes I just get the wording and favorite colors, sometimes I get really specific requests along with a picture of an established classroom theme. I enjoy the work both ways. I've been selling the signs on my Facebook page, Art by Katie Morris, and I recently started up my Etsy shop again, Katie Morris Art. It's pretty cool how Etsy will let you put in options for a custom design. I also have artwork "and other cool stuff" for sale on my Facebook page.
 Sign for one of the music teachers.
 Dorm room signs for some teacher's kids.
 Baby gift.
 Companion sign for one with the teacher's name on it.
 Anyone else thinking ahead to 2016? I'm so excited to work on this goal. I'm especially looking forward to being able to meet some TAB teachers since there are very few in my state, at least that I know of.