Grades 1-5 Art

Category: Learner Profile: Knowledgeable (Page 1 of 2)

Fourth Grade: Composition & Photography

As we enjoy our last few lessons of the year, Fourth Grade have been taking advantage of the gorgeous weather by working on some photography in the courtyard. Addressing the Central Idea ‘Artists use personal experiences to represent time, place (and culture) that connects an audience’ and focusing on a Line of Inquiry involving the connection between personal experience and creating art, students have selected themes, to create a ‘photographic collection’ of their own (presented as a slideshow in Seesaw). Themes such as texture, color, pattern, emphasis (overall knowledge/ understanding of composition) and the concept of perspective have been taken into consideration. With this, students have had great fun, using their iPads to edit photos. Exploring and discovering possibilities, they have cropped, adjusted color, light/dark, saturation, and so on. Please enjoy this gallery of work from our amazing Fourth Grade Photographers.

Second Grade: How We Express Ourselves: Letting Go…. for creativity to flow (Part 3)

Continued from previous post…

As a means of allowing for greater levels of personal creativity this year, I have, in the last couple of weeks pushed myself to ‘let go’ at the ‘creativity’ stage of our unit. The temptation is there to insist that students apply their knowledge of human figure proportions with accuracy. However this year, with a stronger focus on personal exploration and creativity, students have been encouraged, to bring their wire figures to life, as they like, and with fewer restrictions, selecting from a variety of additional materials to create a mixed media piece. Imaginations have been stretched, and the art room has been buzzing with excitement and 100% creative engagement.

The first completed art works are emerging and it is great to see such diversity in skill, knowledge, and most of all, awesome ideas! (Photos below)

Please look out for student end year reflections on Seesaw throughout next week, as students attend their last art class for the school year. Please comment when you can, as hearing from you is highly motivating and rewarding for students. Some photos here of the first completed works emerging.







Second Grade: How We Express Ourselves & Learner Profile Knowledgeable (Part 2)

Images borrowed from:

Art class may have been mistaken for aerobics, as students could be seen lifting their foot to their forearm, or stretching hands to the floor, in a quest to discover new mathematical and scientific facts about human body proportions. New and prior knowledge has been applied as they are encouraged to regularly evaluate the proportions within their work. When the work comes home, it may be interesting for parents to ask their child of any knowledge he/she has, about measurements within the body. It was first necessary to be able to follow procedural instructions to recreate a ‘stick figure’ in wire. This in itself was not easy. As they built on their work,  the wire armature has been referred to as ‘the skeleton’ and plasticine referred to as the ‘skin and muscles’.





Second Grade: HWEO Representing the Human Form (Part 1)

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

Second Grade have continued with the Transdisciplinary Theme of How We Express Ourselves, and addressed the question “How do artists see and represent, the human form?”  and the line of inquiry “Artists draw upon mathematical and scientific knowledge when creating artworks”. From the PYP Learner Profile, we have been focusing on being ‘Knowledgeable’.

To date, students have experienced the art forms of painting, ceramics and now, we are focusing on wire sculpting and mixed media.

This unit flows nicely from our Portrait unit in January. Students have made connections with previous knowledge about facial proportions, as we began to consider proportions of the entire body. Using simple stick figures, students have studied line, proportion and movement through observation of (some very keen) volunteer models (photos below and additional ones posted on Seesaw). They have worked on noting how the body bends through various joints – what is possible and what is not. And with this considered how ‘action moves’ in various sports and dance, can be observed.

The video below demonstrates the ‘Tuning In’ and ‘Investigation’ stages of this unit (first two weeks)


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

First Grade: Who We Are & 3 Way Conferences

As First Grade attend art only once a week, it takes time to follow through the inquiry cycle. Our artist’s are almost finished and ready to start something new.

In the past few weeks students have become more focused in their printmaking skills (Develop Skills). Exploring new tools, patterns and textures, inclusive of layering, they have been working to create prints with improved quality. Discussion has focused on ‘what makes a good print?’ ‘What are we looking for?’ ‘What is working, and what is not?’ and ‘What do I need to do, to improve it?’ Applying less paint, moving the tools slowly, and not pressing so hard, are some solutions discovered.

Having completed their printmaking skills, we returned to the Key Concept of ‘Function’ and the function of pattern/motif design from a variety of cultures. With their knowledge of motif patterns, students have been asked to use their creativity to create one of their own, with a specific item to be ‘decorated’ in mind (a fan, a fabric, a plate). Students have been asked to plan carefully (Generate Ideas/Plan), considering the tools they wish to use, the colors they will apply, and the style of motif (nature, organic or geometric shapes/patterns), and apply to a newly created print (Create).


To finalise, students present their work on Seesaw and to parents. If it is convenient for you to visit the art room during 3 way conferences, students can show their Process Journal and discuss the various stages of investigation, challenges met with printmaking skills, idea generation, their ability to follow their plan, or choices/reasons to change it, and engage in an overall reflection and evaluation with parents. If there is no time for you to visit the art room, a photo will be available in their classroom, of their work, or of them working, which can act as a springboard for discussion.





Third Grade: Resist Methods and thoughtful application of color.

Third Grade have completed their first unit of the year. It was a ‘Stand Alone’ which means it is not specifically connected/integrated to/with their regular class Unit of Inquiry. However, it is still concept driven, and this time, we have focused on the PYP Key Concept of FORM.At AAS, it is our aim to expose learners to a variety of art forms throughout the year, and Elementary School. During the last few weeks, they have enjoyed the opportunity to experiment with and discover the qualities and recognisable features of resist methods, using oil pastel/watercolor, and washable glue/acrylic paint, leading to a final batik product. Batik is usually created with hot wax, and so with safety in mind, glue can work as effectively, and as an introduction for Third Graders.

For her SeeSaw post, Derya chose to speak about her work. Click here, to listen.  Leyla chose to write about her work. “This is my batik. First l put glue on cloth. Next we colored it and finally we put it in cold water and left it overnight . It is finished . The difficult part was putting the cloth on the round frame because it kept falling off . I fixed it by putting the frame under it and pushing the frame together . I chose red orange and yellow because they are all analogous colors”.

As you receive Seesaw posts, you are encouraged to interact with your child by asking questions about the experience of this art form. We encourage a growth mindset, and therefore, the child should be increasingly recognising the value of lessons learned, over the quality of the final product. With this, if your child has followed through the guiding questions, he/she will have addressed the challenges met, and possible strategies to overcome these, in addition to an explanation of the process, inclusive of art vocabulary. For example, words such as ‘batik, resist, acrylic, analogous colors and blending’ should be incorporated into his/her speaking or writing. (If your child only posted a photo, this is due to lack of time. No problem)

Most students followed along the idea of creating a mandala style design, though this was not truly the focus of the work. The discovery and recognition of a new art form in particular, application of new skills and knowledge of color, and our ability to discuss the process was central to all.

A Batik art display will soon be created and on view in the ES Lobby area, and below is a Youtube video, which will give you insights into Third Grade’s first art unit of the year. Enjoy!









Second Grade: Developing Skills, Procedures, and making Personal Connections

This completed group painting can be found on the large bulletin board outside the ES Office.  Second Grade have been following through the design (inquiry cycle), and it therefore should be noted, that this work is not specifically the ‘grand finale’ but simply an exercise which has resulted in something beautiful! Please see the previous posts as a reminder of how this work has been inspired by an investigation into the work of the artist Hundertwasser and his ‘Lollipop Trees’, and the skills/knowledge practised during this ‘Tuning in/Finding Out, and Skills Development’ time.

During the last couple of weeks, continuing to consider the Central Idea “Artists use their creativity in many different ways to express feelings and ideas”, and more specifically, the Line of Inquiry ‘Artistic inspiration and creativity are connected to personal experiences’, students have switched to a new medium: clay. As Hundertwasser may have imagined known environments in creative ways, students were asked to connect to personal experience of a place they know, or a combination of places they know, to envision and create something new. Visual prompts included our very own school and playground.

It was a proud moment to hear and see, many students clearly building upon knowledge and skills gained in their last semester of First Grade, as they remembered vocabulary and were able to apply the ‘Four S’s’ (Score, Slip, Squish, Smooth’) method of attaching clay in a secure manner. Always reinforcing the Elements of Art, interesting shape in particular has been a focus, and thoughtful use of space, as they worked on a clay tile relief. With the absence of color, students have been learning to fill space with texture, and tried to contrast their application of texture when applying to foreground and background (photos of added texture to come) Students have continued to gain an understanding of the sensitivity of clay, and have been responsible for the airtight packaging of it, to maintain it’s moisture in between lessons. Photos of the works, complete with applied texture, will be posted soon. For now, an insight into Penguin Artists at work as they create, with personal experiences in mind.



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