Monday, December 5, 2011

Nature inSpired BlocK prInts!

Fourth Grade was busy last month working developing prints inspired by objects from nature such as plants, animals, bugs, and trees. We focused on specific shapes, textures and lines that represent nature. Day 1- I had the students draw four "blocks" on 4x4 inch paper, and then we did one on one critiques to pick the best design. This  was fun/educational for both the students and myself to understand...their understanding of art, design, craft, and so forth a bit better. Day 2- Students began to engrave their chosen design onto a Styrofoam block, also 4x4 by tracing over their design, and then actually engraving with a carving tool.  Day 3/Day 4 Practice printing days- very experimental with LOTS of encouragement to be "neat printers, because printers are known for that." This was a big challenge during our practice printing times, but it was well worth two days to develop printing skills! Day 5/Day 6- Final Printing and framing days. I gave the students the option to work in partners to help one another (one with dirty "inking" hands, and one with clean "printing" hands) This helped, and was a great opportunity for them to work together. I set up six inking stations throughout the room, allowing students to experiment with rainbow rolls near the end of the class period, I wouldn't have done any more than six. I've also taught this on fabric,  focusing more on culture instead of nature based designs.

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