Second grade students continue their study of art focusing on "American" arts and crafts, both historically and culturally. The Elements of Art are explored through a variety of media and techniques. Here a few lessons worked on throughout the year.
Faith Ringgold: Story Quilt Self-portraits
(Left image) Coming to Jones Road #3: Aunt Emmy, 1999, Faith Ringgold, ACA Galleries, New York (Right image) Dancing at the Louvre, 1991, Faith Ringgold, From the series: the French Collection Part 1, #1, Private Collection.The students are introduced to African American artist, Faith Ringgold. We read several books written and/or illustrated by Faith Ringgold; Tar Beach, Cassie's Colorful Day, and Talking to Faith Ringgold are just a few. We also look at several large poster reproductions of her story quilts. Students then create large "quilted" self-portraits using tempera paint, markers, fabric squares, and wallpaper. Here a student is writing "her story" about her self-portrait.
Clay: Pinch Pots
The second graders are split into small groups of 6 for this assignment. During each art class one group works in clay while the remaining students work on an independent assignment. This allows for one-on-one guidance by the teacher for each student during pinch pot construction.
1. forming the pinch pot 2. pressing embellishments into the clay
3. pots drying out 4. glazed and finished pinch pots in the kiln
Stained Glass Windows:
Louis Comfort Tiffany
Lamp: circa 1902. Louis Comfort Tiffany. Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco. Window: circa 1924. Louis Comfort Tiffany. Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.
The second graders are introduced to artist/craftsman Louis Comfort Tiffany through visuals and sharing. We discuss his painterly techniques in glass making and the strong sense of nature in his art/craft. We then prepare for our own stained glass windows using paper and tissue.
Students design a flower, plant, tree, etc. paying attention to the use of space and backgroud areas. The design is cut out. Tissue is trimmed and glued onto the design.
The second graders may work on 2 different weaving projects in this unit. We begin by viewing several visuals, posters, and books on traditional Native American (Navajo) weavings. We also look at several handmade weavings, rugs, and wall hangings that are made on a primitive loom and a floor loom.
Our first activity is a paper weaving and collage. Students have MANY decisions to make; color schemes, line types, patterns, and embellishments.
The second activity during the weaving unit is cooperative. Four students are assigned to work on the primitive loom daily. They work as a team, raising and lowering the warp, weaving the fabric strips through, and "beating" the weft down. We have made large wall hangings and smaller table runners in the past.