Teacher Guided Open-Ended Art

THE BENEFITS OF OPEN-ENDED ART…
Children learn so many more skills than they would in the same amount of time completing a template art activity designed by the teacher that often holds no interest for the child.

Sometimes, we provide provocations to incorporate our learning objectives while still providing the students freedom to express their own creativity and personality.

IMG_0772 (1)A very reflective teacher chose a different way to create pumpkins this year. The students practiced cutting on a straight line on paint chips. They also then drew and cut their own pumpkin shapes instead of cutting on a teacher developed template. Students were learning fine motor cutting skills along with math skills of shapes and counting, critical thinking, problem-solving, and proportions.

EXPLORING THE COLORS OF AUTUMN:

This is also a great time to explore the beautiful colors of autumn.

 

CLASSROOM PROJECTS:

Autumn is also a great time for classroom art projects in which students can choose to work on a project together- building collaborative skills along with creativity and fine motor.

More information on the benefits of open-ended art, see blog post: Honoring the Process

https://journeyintoearlychildhood.com/2018/12/19/open-ended-art/

Beautiful Art Centers to Encourage Creativity

A beautifully designed art space encourages creativity and     inventiveness in thinking.

 

  • Children draw, paint, design, build and sculpt using their creativity.

  • art center
    Beautifully designed art center to encourage creativity journeyintoearlychildhood.com

    They use thinking skills to plan, organize, make decisions, and represent their ideas as they express their ideas through a variety of media.

  • Children grow cognitive, problem-solving, and decision-making skills while experimenting with color, line, shape, size, proportions, and dimensions. 

 

Incorporating Intentional Teaching of SEL throughout the Day

Intentional Teaching of SEL journeyintoearlychildhood.com

To be intentional means to act purposefully with a goal in mind and to have a plan for accomplishing it.

Intentional teachers set up experiences where they present information, model skills, and guide the learning toward a specific developmental standard or learning target.

BELLY BREATHING art:                                                               (teaching how to take deep breaths during a small group art project)

Straw Painting

  • Place a piece of paper in a tin cake pan.
  • Squirt some paint on the paper.
  • The student takes a deep breath in through their nose (pretending to smell a flower).
  • The students blows out through their mouth and the straw blowing around the paint.

Social Studies:                                                                                                                            Sounds Around Us/ RULES FOR LISTENING

  • After completing a lesson on how to sit at circle time- body calm by having a quiet voice, listening ears and eyes that are watching:
    • Take children on a listening walk
    • During the walk, cue children by saying, “Body Calm.”
    • Students stop and hug their bodies.
    • Point to your lips, the corner of your eye and cup your ears.
    • Students remain quiet to listen.
    • Call on a student to tell you what he/she hears.
    • Ask, “Is it a noise made by people? A machine? Or an animal?”

Moving to the music/beat during gross motor/ HOW OUR BODIES FEEL with DIFFERENT EMOTIONS:

Following a lesson on how our bodies feel when we are feeling:

  1. Brainstorm ways our bodies would move to music that is sad (slow, 60bpm music such as Baroque), excited or worried (fast temp, lively), angry (hard beat) and ready to learn (classical, New Age or alphabet or number song)
  2. Play the different types of music in the gross motor room and move to the beat.

Nurture a Community of Kindness

KINDNESS CLASS PROJECT

When children give each other a compliment or perform an act of kindness, they can tie a ribbon, bead, or other objects on a heart, a dream catcher, or a big piece of cross fencing.

KINDNESS CHECK-OUT TICKET

At the end of the day have each student write or draw on a sticky note a compliment to another student. You can have the students give any compliment or have them focus on the specific social skill being taught that week.

gif_120The students can also share the compliment of another student during an end-of-the-day class meeting.

Honoring the Process: Open-Ended Art

 

 

When we provide children with open-ended art experiences, children are…

  • learning initiative
  • taking risks by showing originality
  • expressing her/himself through representation
  • formulating unexpected connections
  • building confidence and self- worth
  • engaging in play with art materials that have no “correct” end product
  • exploring in their own way with their choice of materials
  • constructing independent decisions and/or rethinking their decisions based on ideas shared by peers 
  • building theories
  • making decisions
  • developing fine motor skills
  • problem-solving
  • persisting through challenges and staying engaged since it is creation of his/her choice

For example, one child may be painting on the easel, another stringing necklaces of noodles at the sensory table, another creating cookies from play dough, another is creating a dinosaur from collage materials, while yet another is drawing with crayons the illustrations on a self- created picture book- all children do not need to be experiencing art in the same way at the same time.

NO MORE TEACHER DIRECTED TEMPLATE ART…
Children learn so many more skills than they would in the same amount of time completing a template art activity designed by the teacher that often holds no interest for the child.

Provocations can be provided for children to encourage exploration of a specific skill (ie. color blending, making of lines, shapes, 2D representation to 3D representation) while still allowing students to explore and design based on what is meaningful to them.

Example:  One project was cut by teacher and all students made the penguin at the same time, waiting to move to the next step until all children were completed step by step.

One art work was completed by the teacher setting out pictures of penguins, black, white and yellow paper. Teacher joined the center to discuss the design process, ask open-ended questions and provide choices to help students make thoughtful decisions.

process art

open ended art featured image