At the beginning of the year, within the first week of school, I like to get something up in the classroom that personalises the classroom for the new cohort of students I am teaching. This usually takes the form of some sort of art, whether it be a self-portrait, name art or some sort of personal goal pop art exercise, these little touches from the students themselves really bring the classroom to life!
So today I thought I would share with you a fun name art exercise which as always can be modified to suit any age level. The way I have designed this particular exercise to share with you today, will allow your students to explore mixing primary colours to make new colours. And for the lower primary grades, it also gives your students a fun way to practise writing their name.
So to get started you will need: – table salt – Edicol dyes (blue, red, yellow) – paintbrushes/pipettes (I prefer paintbrushes for this as the amount of paint added can be better controlled for littlies with a paintbrush but up to you) – craft glue (in squeezy bottles) – A3/A4 cartridge paper (this paper is thicker than normal printer A3 paper, therefore withstanding higher volumes of liquid without tearing) – lead pencils – plastic or baking tray
Here’s how to make your very own salt name art: 1. Give each student an A3/A4 piece of paper. Have them write their name on the piece of paper using their lead pencil and then go over the pencil lines with craft glue – demonstrate squeezing the glue to follow the lines before letting your students loose with the glue!
2. After their name has been fully written with glue, give students some salt to shake over their paper (students will need a lot of salt to ensure it is all covered). Demonstrate to students how to gently lift the paper and tip any excess into a tray at their table (alternatively a teacher or teacher aide may like to assist younger students).
3. Once the excess salt has been removed, introduce your students to the Edicol dyes. Demonstrate the following to the students: dip just the tip of your paintbrush into the dye (they won’t need a lot of paint to make this work). Wipe off any excess on the sides of the dye container. Touch the salt gently with the paintbrush tip. The dye will transfer to the salt and the salt will spread the colour along the letter.
4. Using the same technique as described above, encourage your students to use more of the colours to cover the letters of their name. What do they observe? The colours will mix with the other colours, creating new colours. This should prompt a great discussion about mixing primary colours.
Annd you are done! Well done!! I hope you and your students enjoy decorating your classroom with these masterpieces this year. Don’t forget you can send me photos to share on social media either by tagging me in your Instagram posts @ridgydidgeresources or by sending them to my email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Stuck for ideas on how to commemorate this year’s ANZAC Day or Remembrance Day? Why not try this simple art idea in your classroom. It takes very little time to set up and looks extremely effective when displayed in your classroom.
What you will need:
Pool Noodle (cut into smaller pieces about 10cm thick)
A3 cartridge paper (this paper is thicker than normal A3 paper – if you don’t have any on hand, normal A3 paper will be fine, just be careful about how much paint is used so that the paper doesn’t become too soggy)
How to create:
Dip the pool noodle into the red paint. Dab onto the A3 paper. Covering the paper with as many ‘poppies’ as you would like.
Dip the leaf into the green paint and stencil on the outside of the pool noodle ‘poppies’. Stencil as many leaves as you feel is needed.
Using your thumb or other finger, dip it into the black paint. Press the painted finger into the middle of the pool noodle ‘poppies’.
Connecting different areas of the curriculum with art can be tricky. Particularly geography!
Here is a quick and easy art idea that you can use to support the Australian Geography Curriculum in your classroom. It is particularly great for grades 3-4. Printables for this art activity can be found here.
What you will need:
Neon paints (or any washable/acrylic paint of your choice)
A3 cartridge paper
Map of Australia printables
Watercolour paints/Edicol Dyes
How to create your very own Australia Map work of art:
Using the paintbrushes, paint over the A3 piece of paper in a single colour using the watercolour paints or Edicol Dyes. Set aside to dry.
While these are drying, place a variety of different coloured acrylic or washable paints out for students to paint their maps of Australia. Encourage students to colour each state a different colour. Set aside to dry.
Once dried, students can cut out their map of Australia (don’t be too pedantic about whether they cut on the lines or not – it just won’t happen! ;p) and the Australia title.
Glue the map of Australia and the title onto the dried A3 watercolour page. Students can then use the States and Territories of Australia labels to locate the Capital Cities and States and Territories of Australia on their painted map.
National Reconciliation Week is a great opportunity to learn more about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture and history. There are some great details about the purpose of this week, as well as ways of participating, on the National Reconciliation Week website.
Dreamtime stories have long been a favourite of my students. Not only do they capture the imaginations of the students, drawing their attention, but they also help reflect the culture and history of the original owners of this great land.
One of my personal favourites is the story of Tiddalick the Frog. In honour of National Reconciliation Week, I am sharing with you one of my favourite art pieces that my students enjoy year after year.
Templates for this artwork can be found in my Free Resource Library. Don’t have the password yet for the Library? Head to my Instagram account, check out my Story Highlights and inside the one titled FREE, you will find the password. Feel free to follow my Instagram account while you are there.
So here are the instructions on creating your own Tiddalick master piece.
You will need:
Oil pastels or crayons (I personally prefer oil pastels as the colours are more vibrant
Note: Before I begin this art work I read to my students the story of Tiddalick the Frog. If you don’t have a picture book for the story here is a link to a video or a printable PDF with a simple story on it.
I also like my students to have completed their recount before beginning the art work as well.
Colour in your frogs. There are many ways you can go about doing this. Either colour them fully in crayon or oil pastel. Or partially colour them with oil pastel or crayon and then paint with water colours over the top (as I did for the spotty frog).
Cut out your frog. (Allow the water colour paint to dry if you painted them)
Putting your frogs aside, take your A3 paper. Students will now do rubbings on their A3 paper. This really can be of anything you like. I chose leaves, with the aim for students to paint them blue with watercolours, giving the illusion of a pond. For the other one we simply rubbed lines along the paper while resting the paper on concrete. This gave the lines a rough texture. This was then painted over in brown water colours to give the illusion of dirt or mud.
After rubbings are completed, students can was over the top with your chosen water colour paint.
Once the paint has dried, students can now glue their frog and recount onto the A3 paper.
Pretty simple hey?! You are welcome!
If you are looking for other activities to support Reconciliation Week, check out these resources: