While I was gone to the NAEA Conference in New York City, I had to leave sub plans.  Well I found this activity for first grade on a cool place called Fantastic Fun and Learning (click here).  Thanks, Shaunna!
I had students use a very large sheet of paper. (Look below at the photo with a marker board marker)
They drew lines with sharpie.
The used watercolor to paint on top of the sharpie markers.
Here’s Johnny Cash with I Walk the Line.
This lesson was in between 2 big units. We needed a catch up day but still one that was packed with art learning material. I popped 2 bags of popcorn. Placed on a tray. Had kids grab a handful (they could eventually eat it if they wanted to)
We looked at the shapes of popcorn and drew what we saw. As we did this, we listened to music and just had a real chill kind of lesson. Lots of reference videos on this type of lesson on Youtube.
Lots of fun, 1969

Want to learn the history of Zentangles? If so, click below:
We discussed Zentangles.
Got 9×12 drawing paper and a sharpie and brainstormed ideas of things with a beach theme.
Thought these turned out really cool!

We have blogged before on Zentangles check out the links below:
Happy New Year! 1969
It is that time of year to undecorate, but I wanted to do one more Christmas art post.
9×12 drawing paper
Discuss the Element of Art: Line
How to create a drawn ornament using many different lines.
Pretty straight forward. Give it a try.
Happy Christmas Break! Yes, we all made it! This lesson was done when we were down to one day lessons before exams. Kids used markers, sharpies, watercolor, oil pastels, white paper. Kids just got real creative and gave each bird a personality that represented their feelings of that particular day on that art class. I think they are a hoot!
How fun are these? So, I was looking around on Pinterest and saw these Candy Canes. I followed the link to here:
Got inspired and wanted my kids to create whimsical candy canes using some elements and principles.
12×18 white paper
Black Sharpie
Mr. Sketch markers
paint brushes
water bowls
watercolor paint
Create 3 or more candy canes with pencil
Make in interesting composition
Candy canes need to touch all edges
Use patterns
Overlap candy canes
Jazz it up
Get creative
Ever wondered how they make candy canes?
Check it out- 1969
Have you ever wondered about the history of candy canes?
Enjoy…Merry Merry
Each year at different times during the school year I find it so much fun to teach a lesson on snowpeople and watercolors. So do a lot of other art teachers! I ran across many Art Education Blog post on this very lesson. Take a look when you have a chance because it might spark something fun just for your classroom and kiddos!
See some links below:
Each student was given the same information
White Paper
Need 1 Snow Person
What will be in your background….(brainstorming ideas and mediums)
What perspective will your snowman be in
Draw in pencil
Outline with black sharpie
Take a non permanent marker and trace the snowman
Use paint brush to let the paint smear / run /  blend
Be sure to add details: scarf, hat, mittens, arms, facial features…etc
Some even wanted to use the salt technique for the background.
Others wanted a crayon resist effect behind the snowman.
You see, each kid was given the same directions and none of the snowmen are alike. They are all unique and different. Each one has it’s own personality.
Some students had paper horizontal and others were vertical.
I love lessons like these that let kids be kids and create and build on past units.
Every kid was successful….thanks for dropping by ~ 1969

Last October, my family gave me a red electric guitar for my 50th Birthday.  Also, they gave me guitar lessons.  It is a year later and YES, I am still taking lessons.  I practice almost every day.  I am almost done with Book 2.  So, you can give me a cookie.

I have made an observation over the years.  Once you get a guitar, you want another.  Yes, I did want another and I did want an acoustic guitar.  I mentioned the “want” to my kids.  On my birthday, my son came in the house with a Winshape Camp blanket wrapped around a something. Rob was grinning and said that I should open the blanket.   I opened the blanket and FOUND THIS AMAZING GUITAR.  Wow, this was special on so many levels.

You see, Rob, is a very good guitarist.  The guitar is where the creative blood flows out of Rob.  He never took an interest in drawing or painting.  Sure, he enjoyed doing art, but he just never got hooked.  

So, how did he do it?  Well, he got a guitar.  He got Sharpies.  He drew amazing designs on the guitar.  Seriously, I have never seen Rob put together designs and colors.  Without question, he has natural talent.  What a happy mom I was!  My boy made art for me.  He stepped out of his musical creative state into my visual creative state.  

I have been strumming at some Georgia Bulldog tailgates.  Our tailgates last 8 hours +.  I am just trying to work on those basic chords so maybe I can have a really good jam session with Rob during Thanksgiving break.  I think he enjoys seeing me progress in his guitar world. 

You may ask, how did Rob get interested in guitar?  Well, I signed him up for running, guitar, and tennis lessons.  The running and guitar stuck.  The tennis, not so much.  I did a post on Rob’s running awhile ago.  Have a look HERE. The Arts are a great place for creative folks.  If you know someone that has that creative “thing”, and yes, it is a thing, show them the way.  

Happiness is….Finding your Thing….

Do what you love and love what you do.

There are lots of guest appearances in this video.  Haha.

So, I was going through my digital files and found these from 6 years ago. I did a James Rizzi Unit in Art Camp. This is such a fun artist to cover. Right now in my middle school art club we are covering him. I will post those photos soon in the blog.

  • 12×18 drawing paper
  • Sax Liquid Watercolor
  • Sharpie
  • Pencil
  • Paint Brushes
  • Water Bowls
  • Erasers
Direct Instruction–teacher directed
Guided Discovery–student discovery
Inquiry–series of divergent questions to generate learning
Group Process–cooperative groups, Think-Pair- Share, etc.
Project–research, presentation, performance, etc.
Evaluation—self, peer, or instructor
Media/Technology—Web-based instruction, Software, etc.
Here are some other blogs that have posted lessons on James Rizzi
We have blogged on James Rizzi before here in the links below:

James Rizzi (10/5/50- 12/26/11) was an American pop artist who was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. He had an animated art style, rich in detail and expression, and a massive following. The simple black lines with bold dashes of color make a perfect style to imitate.

Pop Art or “Popular” Art: a movement characterized by the imagery of consumerism and popular culture Characterized by bold, simple, everyday imagery, and vibrant block colours, it was interesting to look at and had a modern “hip” feel.

Enjoy and get your Rizzi on….1969
 To celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month, I decided to hook up with our Spanish teachers and teach a little Art History with our students. Frida was our first choice. I am so glad we studied her because our portraits of her turned out really well.
Here are some of the links we used to learn about Frida:
Other art teachers have taught lessons like this and you can browse their links and art lessons too:

Frida’s Biography was found in the link above:

Frida Kahlo Biography

Childhood and family

Self Portrait With Necklace Magdalena Carmen Frida Kahlo y Calderon, as her name appears on her birth certificate was born on July 6, 1907 in the house of her parents, known as La Casa Azul (The Blue House), in Coyoacan. At the time, this was a small town on the outskirts of Mexico City.

Her father, Guillermo Kahlo (1872-1941), was born Carl Wilhelm Kahlo in Pforzheim, Germany. He was the son of the painter and goldsmith Jakob Heinrich Kahlo and Henriett E. Kaufmann.
Kahlo claimed her father was of Jewish and Hungarian ancestry, but a 2005 book on Guillermo Kahlo, Fridas Vater (Schirmer/Mosel, 2005), states that he was descended from a long line of German Lutherans.

Wilhelm Kahlo sailed to Mexico in 1891 at the age of nineteen and, upon his arrival, changed his German forename, Wilhelm, to its Spanish equivalent, ‘Guillermo’. During the late 1930s, in the face of rising Nazism in Germany, Frida acknowledged and asserted her German heritage by spelling her name, Frieda (an allusion to “Frieden”, which means “peace” in German).
Frida’s mother, Matilde Calderon y Gonzalez, was a devout Catholic of primarily indigenous, as well as Spanish descent. Frida’s parents were married shortly after the death of Guillermo’s first wife during the birth of her second child. Although their marriage was quite unhappy, Guillermo and Matilde had four daughters, with Frida being the third. She had two older half sisters. Frida once remarked that she grew up in a world surrounded by females. Throughout most of her life, however, Frida remained close to her father.

The Mexican Revolution began in 1910 when Kahlo was three years old. Later, however, Kahlo claimed that she was born in 1910 so people would directly associate her with the revolution. In her writings, she recalled that her mother would usher her and her sisters inside the house as gunfire echoed in the streets of her hometown, which was extremely poor at the time. Occasionally, men would leap over the walls into their backyard and sometimes her mother would prepare a meal for the hungry revolutionaries.

Kahlo contracted polio at age six, which left her right leg thinner than the left, which Kahlo disguised by wearing long skirts. It has been conjectured that she also suffered from spina bifida, a congenital disease that could have affected both spinal and leg development. As a girl, she participated in boxing and other sports. In 1922, Kahlo was enrolled in the Preparatoria, one of Mexico’s premier schools, where she was one of only thirty-five girls. Kahlo joined a gang at the school and fell in love with the leader, Alejandro Gomez Arias. During this period, Kahlo also witnessed violent armed struggles in the streets of Mexico City as the Mexican Revolution continued.

Career as painter

Self Portrait 1932

After the accident, Frida Kahlo turned her attention away from the study of medicine to begin a full-time painting career. The accident left her in a great deal of pain while she recovered in a full body cast; she painted to occupy her time during her temporary state of immobilization. Her self-portraits became a dominant part of her life when she was immobile for three months after her accident. Frida Kahlo once said, “I paint myself because I am often alone and I am the subject I know best”. Her mother had a special easel made for her so she could paint in bed, and her father lent her his box of oil paints and some brushes.

Drawing on personal experiences, including her marriage, her miscarriages, and her numerous operations, Kahlo’s works often are characterized by their stark portrayals of pain. Of her 143 paintings, 55 are self-portraits which often incorporate symbolic portrayals of physical and psychological wounds. She insisted, “I never painted dreams. I painted my own reality”.
Kahlo was deeply influenced by indigenous Mexican culture, which is apparent in her use of bright colors and dramatic symbolism. She frequently included the symbolic monkey. In Mexican mythology, monkeys are symbols of lust, yet Kahlo portrayed them as tender and protective symbols. Christian and Jewish themes are often depicted in her work. She combined elements of the classic religious Mexican tradition with surrealist renderings.

At the invitation of Andre Breton, she went to France in 1939 and was featured at an exhibition of her paintings in Paris. The Louvre bought one of her paintings, The Frame, which was displayed at the exhibit. This was the first work by a 20th century Mexican artist ever purchased by the internationally renowned museum.

Stormy marriage

Portrait Of Diego Rivera

As a young artist, Kahlo approached the famous Mexican painter, Diego Rivera, whose work she admired, asking him for advice about pursuing art as a career. He immediately recognized her talent and her unique expression as truly special and uniquely Mexican. He encouraged her development as an artist and soon began an intimate relationship with Frida. They were married in 1929, despite the disapproval of Frida’s mother. They often were referred to as The Elephant and the Dove, a nickname that originated when Kahlo’s father used it to express their extreme difference in size.

Their marriage often was tumultuous. Notoriously, both Kahlo and Rivera had fiery temperaments and both had numerous extramarital affairs. The openly bisexual Kahlo had affairs with both men (including Leon Trotsky) and women; Rivera knew of and tolerated her relationships with women, but her relationships with men made him jealous. For her part, Kahlo became outraged when she learned that Rivera had an affair with her younger sister, Cristina. The couple eventually divorced, but remarried in 1940. Their second marriage was as turbulent as the first. Their living quarters often were separate, although sometimes adjacent.

Later years

Active communist sympathizers, Kahlo and Rivera befriended Leon Trotsky as he sought political sanctuary from Joseph Stalin’s regime in the Soviet Union. Initially, Trotsky lived with Rivera and then at Kahlo’s home, where they reportedly had an affair. Trotsky and his wife then moved to another house in Coyoacan where, later, he was assassinated.


Viva la Vida, 1954

A few days before Frida Kahlo died on July 13, 1954, she wrote in her diary: “I hope the exit is joyful – and I hope never to return – Frida”. The official cause of death was given as pulmonary embolism, although some suspected that she died from overdose that may or may not have been accidental. An autopsy was never performed. She had been very ill throughout the previous year and her right leg had been amputated at the knee, owing to gangrene. She also had a bout of bronchopneumonia near that time, which had left her quite frail.
Later, in his autobiography, Diego Rivera wrote that the day Kahlo died was the most tragic day of his life, adding that, too late, he had realized that the most wonderful part of his life had been his love for her.

A pre-Columbian urn holding her ashes is on display in her former home, La Casa Azul (The Blue House), in Coyoacan. Today it is a museum housing a number of her works of art and numerous relics from her personal life. (From Wikipedia)

https://learnodo-newtonic.com/frida-kahlo-facts Click link for 10 facts about Frida.
Have you ever taught Frida. I had a blast with this lesson. I hope you will too. Thanks for stopping by and checking out our Frida’s.

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