Friday, March 4, 2011

Nature Observations: Grades 1 and 2

Last semester, first and second grade students worked on observation drawings of objects from nature. (You can find out the main ideas/steps behind this unit here.)
For these two younger grade levels, I modified the unit slightly by limiting the subject matter (shells only) and changing the color theory (grades 3-5 worked with complementary colors.)
Students followed the same directions and steps, but for color they could either choose warm or cool colors to use for the oil pastel portion of the unit, and then paint with the opposite color group when we got to watercolors. Here are some examples from first and second grade!
I think that both grade levels did a FANTASTIC job drawing all the unique and challenging shells that I gave them to draw. It was a tough problem to solve, but such a great work out!
Will be back when I can with the last modification of this unit - KINDER!


Ms. A said...

these are beautiful! do you have the children first sketch out their drawings in pencil and then out line in sharpie, or do you have them just go for it?

Katie Gonzalez said...

thank you!!!!

I don't let them use pencil first for a few reasons - the main two being that they draw too tiny & they worry too much about making it perfect. I think the challenge of trying to slow down and be intentional with mark-making is really beneficial, as well as the challenge of trying to incorporate a mistake into part of your design. I always explain to them why we are not starting with pencil first, and now they are pretty used to it! I also let students know that I am "really good" at transforming mistakes and that they can come to me for ideas if they get stuck (or they can consult with a classmate - even better!) With this unit in particular, we talk about how nature is full of variations and imperfections, so it's really easy to make a funky line or shape look like a real detail or form!

Ms. A said...

Ah yes that's what I thought. I agree with all your points. I push in to the student's classrooms so pencils are always available and the children automatically want to begin a project in pencil...such perfectionists lol. Your blog is lovely btw; I'm always inspired by your recycling projects and murals =oP