Stik started painting unofficial, socially conscious murals in his hometown of Hackney, East London in 2001. His simple stick figures wordlessly tell the story of his community and he frequently collaborates with hospitals, charities and homeless organizations. Working from his East London studio, these projects are largely self-funded and he now creates monumental artworks with communities across the world.
PUT YOUR NAME ON BACK OF YOUR PAPER
·Draw with a pencil a stick figure similar to Stik, the artist’s stick figure
·No mouth, hands, or feet
·Use 12×18 Colored Construction Paper. Paint the “Stik” figure white like his work.
·Outline your stick figure when it dries with a BLACK oil pastel / paint or Marker. Yes, you can use hair dryer to dry quicker.
·Put on drying rack
·Clean up paint
I lead with this lesson on Street Art and follow up with a Graffiti lesson using our Character Education words
Stencil Revolution » Artists » Stik Street Artist Biography
Stik Street Artist Biography
“It’s the only thing in my life that I feel this strongly about.”
Stik makes for an odd figure in the world of street art. He creates cunningly simple lines and shapes that echo the nave drawings of children the world over. Yet the work is deceptively frank in appearance and meaning.
The artist’s painted community of stick men, women and children reside throughout London’s streetscape. Each location is carefully considered, and many are regularly revisited and maintained. These seemingly lost and forlorn figures could reflect Stik himself and his experience of homelessness. Perhaps it’s his way of making sure these characters have a home. He has stated, “My pieces are about moving through the cityscape and feeling insecure.”
The great unknown
What is known of Stik’s life would fill a very small piece of a very small wall. The English street artist was born in the mid-1980s. He claims to have always drawn, and that he found graffiti a natural evolution of his creativity. With no formal art education, he learned from other street artists, in particular Doze, Roa, Run and Zomby. Sightings of his signature stick figures in London began in 2002.
He maintains an anonymous persona, shielding his real self behind his image as a quiet and unassuming artist. There is, however, one biographical reference he emphasizes, and that is his period of homelessness. It’s a subject that his words often revisit, a theme that exists beneath the surface of his paintings.
Stik became homeless some time around the year 2000, the circumstances of which remain unexplained. He endured destitution for a period lasting approximately 10 years. He regularly relied on the generosity of friends for a place to stay, sofa-jumping day by day, but he also spent many nights in abandoned buildings. Stik lived through a lot of violence on the streets, and he recalls many times when he felt his life was in danger and he expected to die.
The winter of 2009 proved a turning point for Stik when a drop-in center helped him relocate to St. Mungo’s hostel in Hackney. His life at St. Mungo’s turned into a productive period for his street work. He acknowledges that the pursuit of art gave him the purpose and focus that pulled him of out homelessness.
Stik has kept a low profile as his recognition has increased, both for himself and his work (fans include Elton John, Bono and the Duke of Kent). He volunteers his time to art workshops and often gives back through donations of his work and time.
The artist originally used the name in reference to his drawn characters until people started to call him by it. After a while, the tag just seemed to “stick.”
The art of street art
“Art is free unless you’re selling it.”
Stik’s approach to public spaces is careful and considered. His view is to fit in with the immediate architecture and location, and he’ll never bomb a street or community ” he professes no interest in owning a street. Part of his work ethic includes returning to every painting as often as he can in order to clean it up from dirt and tagging. On more than one occasion, he’s said that he spends more time cleaning graffiti from his graffiti than he does making graffiti.
Stik’s beliefs concerning the nature of graffiti and art reflect a traditional, romantic ideology of the street. “Artistic statements should be free from censorship,” he says. “Sometimes you have to justify a price tag, but you shouldn’t have to justify art itself.”
Stik hasn’t exactly termed contemporary advertising a plague, but he’s by no means a fan. It’s a multi-faceted issue for him, revolving around ideas of art and commercialism. He considers it a matter of rights, a matter of who owns the streets. Balled up in the midst of the debate, he thinks graffiti is essential to urban life. He has talked about graffiti being less about breaking laws and more about changing laws.
“Street art is really an important medium because it’s completely uncensored. It’s an environmental medium. Actually, you are using your environment. You are using the city as your medium. The street art scene is dialogue. It’s more than dialogue; it’s a whole forum for a discussion. And it has feedback. It’s the blueprint that social networking was based on ” writing on your wall.”
About those stick figures
“I’ve been drawing these characters forever.”
Stik quietly confronts his audience with the most unassuming imagery possible. The heads are round. The eyes are dots. Bodies are rectangles and simple lines become arms, hands and legs. An arc here, a lean there, a chosen curve of a line ” this is all he relies upon to convey emotion. “Body language is really like a direct language,” Stik observes. “Transitioning that to lines on a page or on a wall strikes directly to your heart.”
But they’re not merely stick figures. As Stik explains, his characters become a type of emotional shorthand to reflect how he feels. They’re silent and therefore have no mouths, and are meant only to observe. Part of Stik’s artistic principle is a conscious response to work that proclaims “look at me” ” he wants to create art that looks at back its audience.
Stik’s work appears at times so spare and bleak that its character and posture seems to convey a sense of questioning or longing, sometimes even despair. “A lot of my work is loaded with a kind of melancholy,” he admits, “but I do try to put a positive or a light bit of gravitas in it so people can actually relate to it and it feels like something human.”
Stik smiles whenever he talks about his graffiti pulling him out of his homeless nightmare. He’s obviously proud of his accomplishments, and at the same time humbled by the attention and his success. Nonetheless, one question commonly comes at him time and again: how long can you keep doing these characters?
“I think,” Stik grins widely, “there’s enough diversity in stick figures to keep me happy for another 10 years.”
I just love the rich watercolor in the background. For full details on how to create this lesson see link below.
http://2soulsisters.blogspot.com/2017/03/how-to-draw-3d-valentine-hearts.html Have posted on this earlier this month. The lesson was such a success that I wanted to share all of the hearts that I could on the blog for everyone to see!
I hope you feel inspired by these hearts because I know I was =) 1969
These were super fun to create with my classes and they were able to eat their subjects. Ha! You gotta love that added bonus. Cassie Stephens did a fabulous job on her video that she shared on YouTube. We watched it and then got to work on our own 3D hearts.
We used 12 x 18 white drawing paper, water color, baby oil, Qtips & oil pastels. Watch the video. It is great and will help to explain the details to your kiddos.
I got tickled at some of the words that the kids chose to write on their hearts.
Some didn’t want to write words and that was OK too!
Sax Liquid Watercolor in the bottles gave a rich feeling to the backgrounds.
Baby Oil was really cool in blending the oil pastels.
This lesson was a huge success for all involved.
Thanks for dropping by…And a huge thank you to Cassie for posting such a great video! Cassie, if you are reading this…we are trying to get our act together and make a Soul Sister Road trip to Art Scouts this summer! to be continued…. 1969
Art Class got in on some of the action of teaching about bullying. We were asked to make signs that say, “You Are The BBQ Sauce.” We didn’t tell the kids why. Other teachers on campus hung them up. The kids were buzzing with ideas on what this concept meant. They were up for a week then all homeroom classes had a session on watching the video below. This video clip lead to a dialogue on how you should treat people. This was a venue for discussing a myriad of issues that kids deal with in the bullying realm.
Follow up questions after the video were sent out by email. They are listed below. Thanks to Lance and Kathy for organizing this well worth it activity to promote awareness in our school. 4 Ways To Deal With A Bully
1)What did you think of the video?
2)What is the main takeaway from the video?
3)How common is bullying here at Maclay?
4)Does age make a difference?
5)Are there differences in the bullying experience of girls and boys?
6)Who do children tell when they are being bullied?
7)Why don’t some children tell?
8)What does it feel like to be bullied?
9)What is the role of peers in bullying?
10)Are some children more likely to bully than others?
Follow up questions for the video were sent out by Lance Ramer and Kathy Englebrecht for a post discussion during homeroom.This leaves the door open for kids to come to us for their advocate if a specific situation arises. I have worked in several schools and I must admit that my School Head is on POINT when dealing with these situations. She just has her finger on the pulse of our middle school students. So lucky to be working with her and learning her tricks of the trade to grow my personal awareness and be able to collaborate with my peer faculty members.
How did we make signs? We used extra time at the end of class and had kids that were in between lessons collaborate and work on them. We used donated mat board, markers, pencils, and crayons.
I took photos of a few and printed them on the copier for the BBQ Sauce Team to be able to hang them up in classrooms, around school and on lockers.
How do you tackle this subject in your classroom?
We would love for you to share. Please comment in the links below and let us here from you.
Do you collaborate with other classrooms on your campus? How do you all spread the word?
UPDATED on 3/7/2017 4 Ways to Deal with a Bully – Summary of Responses
1) What did you think of the video? Good source of information Helpful – interesting to watch Different version of information Lame one-liners Different than what they expected Good examples – shorter is more effective Empowering Now know what the signs meant
2) What is the main takeaway from the video? You are the BBQ Sauce Need to be nice to everyone, even if everyone doesn’t like you 4 ways to deal with a bully Good metaphor Relaxed – casual people talking about bullying Bullies are bad Stand up for people without being mean We should not be complacent – need to help others
3) How common is bullying here at Maclay? Relatively rare Much better here than other places Kids feel safe here See it a lot – Happens Frequently (break & lunch) More verbal bullying – “just joking” – sarcastic & shady Not at all Pretty common – teasing No physical bullying People are too sensitive Most are benevolent, however some can be malevolent
4) Does age make a difference? Going to theatre HS @ lunch – MS @ drama Yes & No – bullying should not take place Some older kids think they have power over the younger kids 8th graders are being rude to 7th graders Older kids think it’s cool to pick on younger folks Younger kids won’t stand up to older kids Worse in lower school
5) Are there differences in the bullying experience of girls and boys? Girls talk behind your back and think that they are better than you Boys make fun of each other Girls are biggest bullies – gossip Boys tease each other more, but get over it Girls have more drama and are meaner Girls over react with everything Guys are more physical – Girls are verbal Don’t think boys realize they’re bullying Girls more sensitive Getting cut from athletic teams can be hard because people talk about you
6) Who do children tell when they are being bullied? Mom, Sister, Teachers Tell their friends, especially girls Boys would tell and adult if they thought someone’s life was in danger Scared to tell & be labeled a snitch Guidance – Mrs. Smith Teachers they’ve known for a while Parents or their Regent
7) Why don’t some children tell? Scared Easier to not get involved Maybe they think if they tell the other person will bully them more Become a bigger target/Make things worse Afraid others won’t talk to them Embarrassed Scared Bully would tell them not to tell. If they did they would not have friends and other students would give them a hard time.
8) What does it feel like to be bullied? I don’t like being taken advantage of It sucks I haven’t been bullied – harassed (bullying is everyday & consistent…harassment is less frequent) Bad/Saddening – feel like alone Ruptures your soul, and it is quite abrupt
9) What is the role of peers in bullying?
Must standup/confront the bully
Depends on the type of bullying – Verbal v Physical
There’s a small group of people in each grade that would talk
Most people would just watch & not speak up
Depends on how bad the problem gets/context
Support the person being bullied – emotionally
10) Are some children more likely to bully than others? Can’t be explained – jealousy If you grow up a bully, you’ll continue to be one Bullies come from unfortunate/uncomfortable lives and bad situations Bullies are insecure & they need to bully to feel secure & not worry Popular/Not Popular Small school lends to less bullying because you know everyone
See our other post on pinch pots. http://2soulsisters.blogspot.com/2017/02/more-clay-hearts-i-just-loved-this.html http://2soulsisters.blogspot.com/2017/02/heart-pinch-pots-happy-valentines-day.html http://2soulsisters.blogspot.com/2016/09/pattern-and-pinch-pots.html http://2soulsisters.blogspot.com/2015/07/clay-halloween-themed-pots-with-lids.html
This project was put together in one day. We let the greenware get bone dry. Fired in kiln from 04 slow to bisque. Glazed the bisque and fired from 06.
When was the last time you did a clay lesson? It is pretty therapeutic for all involved. Our classroom teachers and staff like to get in on the learning fun. Have ever invited your administration to your classroom to make the project you were introducing to you class? If not, you should!
http://www.lakesidepottery.com/Pages/The-Importance-of-Clay-in-Children’s-Development.html Great article in the link above!
By Patty Storms – Lakeside Pottery
In recent years, as budget concerns reduced art programs in schools (in particular elementary schools), there has been a great deal of research about the importance of art in child development. From my own experience as an artist and ceramic teacher, I believe that few art mediums kindle growth and skills in children in the way that clay does. At Lakeside Pottery Ceramic School and Studio in Stamford CT, I have taught children (ages 6 to 15) for the last several years. During that time, I have witnessed firsthand how invaluable the experience of working with clay is for sensory development, motor skills, self esteem, and self expression, problem solving skills, discipline, and pride. Clay also has a uniquely therapeutic quality that I have seen settle and calm children; it retains their attention for hours.
SENSORY DEVELOPMENT AND MOTOR SKILLS There is no better moment for me than witnessing a child’s joy as they sit at the potter’s wheel for the first time and place their wet hands on slowly spinning clay! Clay, and its necessity to be touched, is at once familiar to children. The sensory experiences they encounter in our pottery studio are numerous and as they experience the texture and feel of the clay, the students express what they are sensing with uninhibited enthusiasm; “It’s cold, it’s wet and squishy, and it’s so heavy!” Clay asks to be poked, pinched, twisted and rolled and as they handle it, children develop both fine and major motor skills and realize that they have an effect on the clay as it responds to their manipulation. Children visually inspect the clay’s surface and color, they smell it and they laugh at the sounds it makes when it’s wet. For many, it’s perhaps the first time they’ve been encouraged to get wet and dirty in a classroom environment and there is an instinctive and uplifting response to the freedom they feel. Even when the finished product is ready to take home, the children hold and cradle their work, smoothing their fingers over the now colorfully glazed surface as they turn it around and around for inspection.
ESTEEM AND EXPRESSION
From my experience as an art teacher, I believe that clay is a unique art medium because it is highly responsive to touch and very forgiving. As soon as children are given clay, they immediately begin to mold and shape it. They become aware that they are in charge and have influence over the medium as it is quick to respond to their fingers. The feeling that they are in command of the clay gives the students the confidence to attempt any project which opens the door to greater self expression and imagination. Clay also allows a child to learn to repair mistakes and therefore not be afraid to make them. Making mistakes is essential for self improvement but can be difficult and even an obstacle for some children. The forgiving quality of clay, and therefore the ability to readily fix mistakes, gives the child a sense of control over their project’s success which improves self esteem and self expression as they realize that mistakes aren’t going to stop their progress. For example, during a class, a boy had been working on his project, a toothbrush holder that looked like a baseball player, for over two hours. All of a sudden he accidentally pierced a hole right through the side of the project while decorating. He looked up at us devastated. But as I showed him how to take a piece of clay and fill in the damaged area, he suddenly took the clay from my hand and stated, “I can do it myself!” He repaired his piece and went on decorating with fervor.
Clay is different from other art mediums in that it requires an understanding of the three dimensional world. In our programs, we often encourage the children to work on spinning decorating wheels or to get up from their seats and walk to the other side of the table so they can see their creation from all sides. They begin to understand shape, form, and perspective, and therefore get a first lesson in geometry. The child learns to really look and see the world around them and discovers their place in that world. They gain knowledge of planning methods and problem solving as they map out their three dimensional project. Where should the door go on my square castle? How tall can I make the tree before it gets unsteady? Should my dog’s tail go out straight or curl up over his head? If my rabbit’s head is too big for its body will it fall over? We encourage the children to think on their own and help with the planning experience. For example, when we make a cylinder we start with a flat rectangular piece of slab clay which the students decorate and design as it lies on the table. As they are working we ask them how we could use this flat rectangle to make a standing vase. It’s wonderful to see them understand how to roll it into a cylinder and we always have a few children who forecast the next step by saying, “We need a bottom!”
DISCIPLINE “While there are rules and procedures that need to be followed when working with clay, I find that children are very good about understanding guidelines and respecting procedures. Through this understanding they learn something that is very important: discipline yields success. The methods I teach are simple, (e.g. don’t allow a piece of clay to be too thick, or a skinny tail should be connected to the body for support). I explain why the techniques are important (if the clay is too thick it won’t dry properly or if the tail is too skinny and doesn’t connect to the body it might break off because it is too weak) and the children grasp the concepts easily learning basic physics. The most important rule is “slipping and scoring.” This is used anytime two pieces of clay are joined together and if it’s overlooked, pieces may fall off or crack during the firing process. I’ll often hear one child remind another to “slip and score,” and they like to call out the rule as I am giving instructions. I give the children adult pottery tools to work with and they understand the responsibility they are being given and are careful. Throughout the entire period of using specific techniques and real tools, they are conscientious and thorough as they follow the process step by step. I am always thrilled when they remind me of other rules they have learned, such as when they say “Patty, don’t forget to poke a hole in my cat’s head, it’s hollow and the air needs to get out or it will crack!”
Our children’s after school programs are two hours long and our summer camp classes run for three hours. I have many parents who express concern that their child might not be able to stay on task for that long, however the opposite is always true. While I have worked with students in other art mediums, something magical happens when children work with clay. Whether it is the sensory response to the clay, the ability to be in charge of the medium or, perhaps, the ability to express and articulate their emotions through their physical prodding or smoothing of the clay, all children, even those with high activity levels, become engaged and engrossed in their work. The class of twelve children is composed and quiet and the hours melt away. The children don’t experience frustration or disappointment because the clay is flexible and compliant. While I am unaware of research in this area I can attest to the calming and healing results as I have seen them at the studio time and again.
PRIDE AND SELF WORTH At Lakeside Pottery, we all teach ceramics with the philosophy that the process is more important than the product. I place emphasis on the discovery and joy of creating, however, there is an excitement for children as they make their mug or pencil holder and announce that it’s for their grandmother’s coffee or for their dad’s desk. The functional and durable nature of the finished stoneware clay gives children a feeling of significance and pride. I will often give the students the option of putting glass chips in the bottom of their bowls or plates as part of the glazing process. When I explain that though it is beautiful, it might make the piece not safe for food, many children say no to the glass because it is important for their bowl to be used as a center piece at their table. All forms of art are important for children to experience, yet it does seem that the long-lasting nature of the children’s finished clay piece adds a special value for them. We often ask parents what artistic creation their mother has kept on her shelf for years, and they all answer that it is the pottery they made in grade school.
It is always fulfilling for me to introduce clay to children and watch its unique qualities contribute to their development in so many ways. Knowing how valuable clay is to children’s achievements and because it is discouraging to see limits put on our children’s school art programs, Lakeside Pottery has helped schools start clay curriculums; worked with children with special needs, trained teachers to work with clay, assisted in purchasing and setting up equipment, and helped plan and design school studios. We have shared the clay experience both in outreach programs in schools and children’s workshops within our studio with the belief that clay is an essential element for nurturing children’s growth.
So, I saw this lesson on Mrs. Knight’s Smartest Artists Art Education blog. See link http://dolvinartknight.blogspot.com/2012/11/clay-thumb-owl-sculptures-2nd-grade.html
She saw it on Artsmudge another Art Education Blog http://www.artsmudge.com/2011/05/clay-thumb-owls/
I love sharing on connecting online with my Professional Learning Network. Even though we basically taught the same lesson all of the owls turned out very unique.
We used white clay. Greenware to bisque was at 04 on slow. Bisque to glaze firing was 06 on fast. We use Stroke N Coat glazes.
Side note, I love creating owls. 1965 and I were both Chi Omegas at the University of Georgia. Chi O symbol is an owl…so yeah, I am partial to this type of lesson with this subject matter 😉
Art Club is a less formal time for kids to create this year in class. We have it 2x a week during 8th period. I have placed several owl videos in the blog for kids to get a feel of just how owls act.
I had to laugh at my 1 R2D2. Directions were to create a clay owl. This guy wasn’t feeling an owl, so he busted out some Star Wars. Ok, I can live with that…he turned out pretty cute! I just giggle everytime I think about it …Happy Friday, 1969
Student achievement was down. Teachers were demoralized. Until a bold strategy — integrating the arts into curricula — helped students embrace their learning and retain their knowledge. Today the faculty, staff, and students of Maryland’s Bates Middle School are crafting a whole new vision of school transformation.
Former Managing Editor and Producer, Edutopia
What do Mars and modern dance have to do with each other? How do you connect fractions with Andy Warhol? At Wiley H. Bates Middle School, in Annapolis, Maryland, the answer is arts integration. Every teacher there is committed to weaving the arts and standard curricula together to create a richer and more lasting learning experience for their students.
Arts integration goes beyond including art projects in class; it is a teaching strategy that seamlessly merges arts standards with core curricula to build connections and provide engaging context. For example, in a science classroom you might see students choreographing a dance using locomotor and nonlocomotor movements to demonstrate their understanding of rotation versus revolution of the planets (PDF). In a math class, you might see students learning fractions by examining composition in Warhol’s Campbell’s soup paintings.
(See more arts-integrated lesson plans from Bates.)
What we also saw in these classrooms were students who were enthusiastically participating in the learning process, and having fun. It’s not revelatory to say that the arts can engage kids. But that that engagement can also be leveraged to boost academic growth and improve discipline seems like a secret that really needs to be revealed. When you see how the kids embrace these lessons, hear them tell how art helps them remember concepts better, and learn about the improvements teachers have noted in student understanding and retention, it makes you wonder why more schools aren’t integrating the arts in every class.
A Whole-School Reform
Bates decided to become a fully arts-integrated school in 2007 as the primary initiative in a whole-school reform effort. Other initiatives in their school improvement plan (PDF) included Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS), an operational framework for implementing practices and interventions to improve academic and behavioral outcomes, and Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID), a college readiness system with research-based methods for elementary through postsecondary students. Their principal at the time, Diane Bragdon, had brought the school back from the brink of failure and now was ready to aim its trajectory squarely toward greater success. Bragdon got the support of Anne Arundel County Public Schools Superintendent Kevin Maxwell, long a proponent of schools of choice, who knew well the impact arts integration had had in other Maryland schools. The district applied for a four-year grant called Supporting Arts Integrated Learning for Student Success (SAILSS) from the U.S. Department of Education and was one of 15 districts and schools to receive it.
Since they started implementing arts integration schoolwide in 2009, Bates has seen a 23 percent drop in the average number of referrals and suspensions per student. The school’s percentage of students proficient or advanced in math has grown four times more than the state’s over the same period, and five times more in reading. Not all lessons are taught with arts integration, but Bates takes pains to diligently track those that have been in a regular log (PDF), and they report substantial improvements in student comprehension and retention.
Why Does Arts Integration Work?
Why does it work? Arts integration uses teaching practices that have been shown in brain-based research to improve comprehension and long-term retention. For example, when students create stories, pictures, or other nonverbal expressions of the content they are learning — a process researchers call elaboration — they are also helping to better embed the information. In one eighth-grade math class, students prepared for a test on linear equations by creating photo stories of the steps involved. This required that teacher Laura Casciato spend nearly a full class period teaching about basic principles of design (PDF). She explained the trade-off: “It was an easy decision to spend time on the art because we know that they retain that information better. They’re going to look at that test and say, ‘Oh yeah, I remember that information from my photo.'”
As with any new initiative, there are a number of factors that must be in place for it to succeed. With arts integration, high-quality professional development is essential. Teachers don’t need to be “artistic” to be able to use arts integration; they just need to learn some of the fundamentals so they will be better able to think of ways to merge art concepts with other content. For example, knowing the basic elements of design, such as emphasis, balance, contrast, and repetition, enabled Casciato to teach her students how to create more informative photo compositions to illustrate each step in solving a linear equation (PDF).
(Read tips for administrators and teachers for getting started with arts integration.)
Bates used the bulk of their grant money for professional development, which they started in the 2007-08 school year. They have PD Thursdays every other week, and at least one per month is on arts integration. Last year (2011-12) was the final year of their grant funding. Teachers report they are now well versed in arts standards and know how to create arts-integrated lessons. Many now train their colleagues and new teachers entering the school.
Beyond engagement and retention, adults and students at Bates cite numerous other benefits of arts integration: It encourages healthy risk taking, helps kids recognize new skills in themselves and others, provides a way to differentiate instruction, builds collaboration among both students and teachers, bridges differences, and draws in parents and the community. Plus it’s just plain fun. Lastly, there’s equity. If we agree that the arts can provide all kinds of benefits for kids, from intellectual to creative to social-emotional, then shouldn’t all kids have the opportunity to learn about and experience them? But far too few schools have either the funding or the bureaucratic support to make this a priority, a lack often born out of fear of sacrificing academic achievement. What Bates and many other arts-integrated schools across the country are showing is that by creating a richer, more memorable learning experience through the arts, they unleash not only a rising tide of academic achievement but they lay the foundation for what it means to be a truly creative community.
Even as arts programs are increasingly falling under the axe of limited school budgets, teachers are increasingly integrating arts into the core subject areas. The concept behind arts integration is nothing new. Teachers have been having students build models, perform plays, sing songs, and complete other various arts activities for years. Now there is a growing body of evidence to support those practices.
Integrating the arts into a class not only has the easily observed and undisputed benefit of increasing student engagement and motivation, but it’s also been shown to increase student achievement. Students who participate in drama activities in their language arts class increase their written language ability, and an English language learners’ abilities are also increased when the arts are integrated into their instruction. In fact, a curriculum rich in arts integrated activities has been linked to across the board achievement and retention increases. These achievements have been shown to benefit the student even after they leave a classroom utilizing arts integration.
Research suggests that the link to increased retention is due to the fact that each time a student uses information in a new and different way, they embed the information slightly more into their brain. The Common Core’s focus on learning content deeper instead of increasing content seems to easily mesh with this idea and offer ample opportunity for integrating the arts into the classroom.
While ASCD offers a quick intro on including arts in your lesson, there are plenty of other resources out there as well.
Great article on why we should collaborate. A few schools are taking the research to heart, weaving the arts into everything they do and finding that the approach not only boosts academic achievement but also promotes creativity, self-confidence and school pride. Article is a must read when you have a moment.
For details on this lesson check out our previous post from more information:
According to About.com, experts believe maracas were invented by the Tainos who were the native Indians of Puerto Rico during the 16th and 17th centuries. The original maracas were made from fruit and had a round shape. Maracas are considered one of the easiest instruments to play because they make sounds by shaking. About.com notes that the first maracas made sound by replacing the pulp found in the fruit with tiny pebbles. A pair of maracas will sound different because each one will have a different amount of pebbles within them. Modern maracas are now made from plastic and are very popular in Latin America.
Details and more on the link above to give you an idea of how you can tweak this lesson just for you and your situation.
What are maracas?
Maracas, sometimes referred to as rumba shakers, are percussion instruments traditionally made out of a hollow gourd and filled with pebbles, beans, seeds, beads or other, similar, objects.
According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, the word originates in the Portuguese language, and the first known use of the maraca was in 1598. They are typically oval or egg-shaped and have an attached handle. Modern maracas can be constructed of materials like wood, leather and plastic. However, the most authentic and valuable ones are still made from gourds or dried seed pods. In some cultures, such as the American Southwest and the African Congo, maracas are made of turtle shells and baskets. They are almost always played in pairs and shaken like a rattle. They belong to the group of instruments identified as idiophones, primarily because they are solid and sealed. However, they differ from other idiophones, such as castanets and cymbals, in that they are shaken rather than struck with an object or clanged together. Maracas are an integral part of musicality in many regions, including the South Pacific, Africa, the Caribbean and South America. Latin American music is renowned for the use of maracas, bringing them into mainstream pop culture.
Tempera paint and colors of choice.
We use a hair dryer in between the colors changes to help with drying.
I store units in plastic bins. this is for easy grabbing when teaching certain units each wheel session.
I try to keep it all in the box to help each lesson run smoothly.
I used plastic beads and dried beans for the shakers.
Do you have a hair dryer in your room? If not, you might want to ask for one for a donation.
Paper mache is a good way to introduce this 3d unit.
They are super fun to make!
Videos below give you other ways to make paper mache. I like the plaster wrap for a classroom setting. It is more efficient and effective.