Grades 1-5 Art

Category: Drawing & Painting (Page 1 of 3)

First, Second, Fourth and Fifth Grade: W.O.W

Grades 1,2,4 and 5 have started work on their W.O.W artwork. AAS Artists will tell you, that W.O.W, stands for Wonderful Original Work of Art.

After weeks of practising studio navigation, setting up their work space, exploration of various media, ways to research and generate ideas, artists are ready to demonstrate what they know and can do, by creating a final piece which they would feel proud to display in a public space. 

The criteria for the W.O.W piece, is as follows:

  • I have thought about it for a while and made a plan
  • I spent at least three lessons on it
  • I have fixed, improved, perfected it
  • It looks ready to hang on the wall
  • It might have been frustrating to create but I stuck with it!
  • I have shown it to others for feedback
  • It has enough personal meaning for me to write about it in an artist statement
  • It came from my heart
  • I found satisfaction and interest in creating it
  • It happened through experimentation in the studio

The above criteria is expected to be fully met by Grades 4 and 5, and lower grades are specifically working on the ability to engage and persist with an idea, and work to refine a piece, to a point of completion, over a number of lessons.

We have three full lessons before the December break, so the timing is perfect. A wide variety of artworks are emerging as students make choices about subject matter, format, and art form. (Current options are painting, drawing, and collage only)

Watch this space!


Fifth Grade: PYP Exhibition 2019

Transdisciplinary Theme: How We Express Ourselves, PYP Key Concept: Perspective

Central Idea: Collaborative Inquiry is a journey which empowers students to demonstrate life-long skills and dispositions which lead to action.

Line of Inquiry: Artists work together use creativity to raise awareness of matters that are important to them.

CONGRATULATIONS to Fifth Grade students as they reach the final stages of their exhibition work. The PYPX Art Station has been buzzing with collaborative artistic activity as many have chosen various art forms to help express ideas and findings. We look forward to hearing about your learning journey and future action steps on matters which have become important to you.

Feel free to take a selfie at our Yayoi Kusama work. Good luck with your presentation! (More photos of students at work to be posted on Seesaw)





Third Grade: Student Led Conferences Thursday 29 March 2019

Third Grade Students should invite their parents to the art room, to discuss their most recent learning journey and their understanding of the Line of Inquiry “Understanding symbolism in art helps us to gain a sense of the artist’s perspective’. Students will have choices of learning experiences to share, including an invitation to interpret art works through use of symbols, and to demonstrate skills in dot painting (parents are invited to join in). Valuable discussions include reflection regards the joy and challenges met, during the process of dot painting, and strategies to overcome these.

Guiding questions/discussion points will be provided for parents to assist students, should they need help with conversation starters.

We look forward to seeing you Thursday.

Second Grade: Student Led Conferences 28 March 2019

Second Grade Students should invite parents to the art room to show a photograph of their self portrait and explain/demonstrate their understanding of the line of inquiry “artists use scientific and mathematical knowledge when creating artworks’. Conversations may also focus on the steps required to create their portrait, and specifically the challenges met, and strategies for improvement. Hundertwasser artworks will also be available as discussion points, and some clay provided in order for students to demonstrate skills specifically in clay attachment – the Four S’s – Slip, score, squish, smooth.

Guiding questions/discussion points will be provided for parents to assist students in conversation initiation, though it is the choice of the student, regards which aspect of his/her learning he/she will share.

We look forward to seeing you Thursday.


Fourth Grade: Student Led Conferences 28 March 2019

Fourth Grade students are expected to bring parents to Room 3002 (next to the art room) to view the Fourth Grade ‘Exhibition of Moods’. Feedback, reflection and evaluation was an essential part of this unit, and students need your opinion on their work and that of their peers. Students have worked hard to generate ideas, and apply their knowledge and understanding of the use of subject matter and color to express a feeling.  Hopefully, still a BIG SECRET, students would like you to guess the mood of their own painting and also of their classmates work. This is a very exciting moment for students. Please join in the fun, and contribute to our feedback session. The results of this activity will help students self evaluate their effectiveness as a communicator through art.

Cultural masks in their current stage of artistic process (not finished) will also be available, in addition to our original Barong and Rangda Masks. Guiding questions/discussion points will be available for students who would like a little help with conversation starters. We look forward to seeing you on Thursday.

Fifth Grade: Artists as Change Makers

(Videos in this post may be easier to view from a laptop or PC)

Transdisciplinary Theme: How We Express Ourselves, PYP Key Concept: Perspective

Central Idea: Collaborative Inquiry is a journey which empowers students to demonstrate life-long skills and dispositions which lead to action.

Line of Inquiry: Artists work together use creativity to raise awareness of matters that are important to them.

Note: Our line of Inquiry strives to place emphasis on three things: Collaboration, Change Makers, Global Issues & Citizenship.

Welcome back! This is going to be a long blog post (student video at end of this post). My aim is to enlighten you, as best possible regards this year’s strong integration of art and the upcoming Grade 5 PYP Exhibition (PYPX). As you may know, during the latter part of this school year, students will be involved in in a personal investigation of their choice. Groups will be organised according to interest and students will involve themselves in a collaborative process of inquiry, and be required to present their learning journey to the whole school community.  This is the culminating learning experience of your child’s elementary school experience and very exciting! Please do not contact home room teachers regards this, at this moment in time. You will be introduced to specific details at the scheduled time, after February break. However, as the Fifth Grade art rotation began last week, and shall continue until Mid-March, art class is currently helping to prepare students to ‘tune in’ to the idea of investigating a PYP transdisciplinary theme, Central Idea, Concept, make specific connections with the UN Sustainable Development Goals, and to develop an understanding that there are a variety of art forms, which they could choose to utilize, later.

Identifying Transdisciplinary Themes, PYP Concepts and UN Sustainable Development Goals

During our first week of art class, through close observation/analysis of various artworks, students had the opportunity to clarify their understanding of the PYP Transdisciplinary Themes and Concepts and the UN Sustainable Development Goals. They have begun to consider how art can be used as a means of raising awareness of such issues.

Students have been exposed to the work or artists who clearly have something to say. Completely open to personal interpretation, students have worked as a whole class, to seek meaning, and identify the Transdisciplinary Theme, PYP Concepts and UN Sustainable Goal in various artworks. So far we have specifically observed the work of Jo Atherton, Yayoi Kusama and Von Wong. 

Exposure to a variety of art making forms

During week two and three, students are being reminded that art comes in a variety of forms, such as painting, drawing, construction, collage, and photography. The intention here is to open their minds to the various media which they could use, if they choose to, as a means of expression during their upcoming personal learning journey. It is already a busy and exciting time, as students have rotated through teacher directed, art stations. All classes are contributing to the same stations. They are reminded to constantly keep in mind, the question “How can I use creativity to express a matter which is important to me?”

PYP Attitudes/Attributes (Learner Profile)

Incorporated into all, is consideration of the PYP Learner Profile. A shared painting can be a challenge and cause great frustration when a partner removes, changes, or transforms an area of a work with which you held a moment of great pride. A strong sense of perseverance, and acceptance is required  and students are being encouraged to be responsible and caring in their approach to all. I am pleased to report, that to date, a large percentage of students are demonstrating high levels of positivity in this regard. In fact, as the week has progressed, excited students have returned to art class before or after school, or during recess, simply to observe the new development that has occured during their time away.


Reflection and evaluation comes quite naturally. The art room can be noisy at times,  as students are constantly engaged in talking to each other about what is working and what is not. As we are in the the early stages, some guidance is required in some instances, as they self and peer evaluate. Positive and constructive feedback is encouraged as they make collaborative decisions regards their next steps with the work. At the end of each lesson, a whole class moment of reflection is required, where students discuss challenges met, and any strategies they may be devising to overcome this.

Next Steps

The entire Fifth Grade are working rapidly. It has been amazing to see! For all of us, there are moments or great joy, and moments of disappointment. An artwork can be fabulous one minute, and ruined the next! Tolerance, forgiveness, acceptance, open mindedness, and perseverance are our words of the week! Two weeks of planned work is well under way, and in these early days students are requesting more. Together, we are making decision regards the introduction of new stations. And together, we shall decide, later in the year, and as a result of community feedback, which of our collaborative works we agree to being ‘presentable’ for the exhibition.

Below, I share two videos. Von Wong’s ‘The Last Straw’ and his artwork ‘The Parting of the Plastic Seas’, and a video of Fifth Grade artists at work.


Third Grade: HWEO: Storytelling through Art

(Note: Videos and Audio Links may be more easily accessible via laptop or PC)

Please refer to the blog post dated 8 December to understand the context of this blog post. As a reminder, this is a transdisciplinary unit (How We Express Ourselves” with the shared Central Idea: ‘Through examining the arts, people gain insight into culture’. 

Third Grade Learners have continued to investigate the question “How does art help us to understand the lives of people of different times, places and cultures?” by focusing on the dot paintings of the Australian aboriginal people. The majority of students now recognise the symbols in the work and understand that the stories they tell, relate to cultural beliefs, environmental factors and lifestyles.

Students have thoroughly enjoyed creating their own dot paintings. These artworks are not intended to recreate an aboriginal style painting at all. But rather to gain experience with new materials (Tempera on canvas). To allow for some individual creativity and artistic knowledge and skills, they have been encouraged to select their own thoughtful color combinations and make choices to include symbols they have learned, or to create their own to tell a short story. There has been much freedom, with the focus on controlling the materials and tools. Their Seesaw post should demonstrate some reflective thinking, inclusive of challenges they met and strategies for improvement.

Lola’s Seesaw Post demonstrates her understanding that symbols in a work can reveal a story. She also discusses her choice of color combinations, the challenges she met and strategies for improvement.

Click here to view/hear Lola’s Seesaw Post

Please enjoy the video below of students at work and some final artworks.


Second Grade: Knowledgeable Learners and Reflection

(Note: Videos/Slide Shows, Audio, and Gallery may be more accessible via PC or Laptop)

In recent weeks Second Grade Learners have been thinking about the importance of owning some scientific and mathematical knowledge in order to create a self portrait, and their ability to reflect upon their learning. Using iPads, they have closely observed their own facial characteristics, in addition to looking at a number of images to help them with shape of hair, and placement of eyes, nose, mouth.  When viewing your child’s work on Seesaw, be sure to ask him/her about the steps he/she took to create it: specifically the diversity of hair shape within their class, and the measuring of facial proportions. Students have also worked on mixing a variety of colors to create a skin tone to match themselves, inclusive of surprising colors such as green, blue, red, purple.

Seesaw Posts: Reflection helps learners develop their ability to articulate their process, with increasing use of art vocabulary. Learners have worked together to identify a range of challenges met, and a variety of strategies to overcome them. This should be included in their speaking/writing. Students are learning that Seesaw posts are not only a means for final presentation. It is also a means of documenting learning throughout. It took much courage for some students to upload un-finished work (“… but I don’t want my Mom to see it like this”). These students should be praised for taking this risk and noting that the work is not finished, and articulating their ‘next steps’ for the work. Well done to those students for finding the courage.

Please find below, two examples of Seesaw Posts, a YouTube Video/Slide Show of student work and a Second Grade Portrait Gallery. Enjoy!

Izabel’s Self Portrait and Reflection


Bella’s Self Portrait and Reflection


Second Grade Portrait Gallery

Third Grade: HWEO Exploring Culture Through Art

(Note: YouTube Video/Audio may be more accessible via PC or Laptop)

Connecting: Relating artistic ideas and work with personal meaning and external context: Relate: Relate artistic ideas with Societal, cultural, and historical context to deepen understanding. (National Core Art Standards) PYP Phase 2 Responding: Investigate the purposes of artwork from different times, places and a range of cultures including their own

Both in their home room class, and art, Third Grade have begun the transdisciplinary unit of Inquiry: How We Express Ourselves. This means we address the same Key Concepts of Connection and Perspective, through the Central idea that ‘Through examining the arts, people gain insight into culture’. 

Considering questions such as “What is culture? How is culture expressed through the arts? What are some expressions of culture? And how does art help us understand the lives of people of different times, places and cultures (National Core Art Standards), and in addition to exposure to a variety of cultural reflections through the arts in their homeroom, art students have begun to specifically observe Australian Aboriginal Dot Paintings. Discussions around the meaning of ‘The Dreamtime’ lead to some wonderful and respectful listening to, and speaking about, various third grade multicultural theories/perspectives, about the beginning of time and creation.

To assist immediate engagement, students have been provided the opportunity to simply practise the very enjoyable activity of creating dot marks, while observing details in some Australian Aboriginal art works. While doing so, students have been exposed to music of the Didgeridoo, and listened to Dreamtime Stories such as Ka-ro-ra (an Aboriginal Creation Myth) The Rainbow Serpent, Tiddalik the Frog, How the Kangaroos Got their Tails, and How the Birds got their Colors.

As we move into the next stage of the unit, students are beginning to notice a common thread of symbols within the works and questions are starting to emerge regards their meaning, and ways in which they might help us to understand stories, beliefs and/or lifestyles.

For now, I leave you with a video of our first two lessons, and examples of some beautiful exploratory work happening in the art room. Enjoy!


Fourth Grade: How We Express Ourselves

(Note; The Youtube video in this post may be more accessible via laptop or PC)

Fourth Grade artists have been working through a six week unit in art which is integrated with their classroom’s Unit of Inquiry. This means that the students focus on the same Central Idea, as they have in class, but through the lens of an artist. The art form, this semester has been painting. Students have applied critical, creative and procedural thinking (Learner Profile Thinker) to investigate and apply rules of composition which are specifically incorporated to draw attention of the viewer, and influence thinking/communicate an idea: Specifically in this case, to create a feeling or emotion through use subject matter, and art elements/principles of emphasis and color.

A large focus of this unit is the importance of gathering feedback for the purpose of reflection/evaluation and identification of ‘next steps’.  Students have shared ideas and gathered feedback as a means to continue to self evaluate their effectiveness as a communicator through art. In the new year, at Student Led Conferences, we will have an ‘Exhibition of Moods’ in the South Cafeteria where all student work is shown. Here, the students would like to invite the school community to guess the mood/feeling of their work. The results of this will help them to evaluate their effectiveness as a communicator. It was fun to see students trying to remain true to their ‘secret’ during Parent Conferences last week. The secret being the mood/feeling they are working on communicating. For those of you who already know, please help to keep the secret!

On Friday, some Fourth Grade students will present at assembly to explain their learning journey to their Fifth and Fourth Grade audience. The video below has been created for the assembly. Below, also a small gallery of some art works by Fourth Grade artists (please note that some still need further work).



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