Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Digital Station- Button Sewing


Excited to share another self-paced lesson with you.  This lesson is to teach students how to sew a button.  This life skill is often missed in today's public schools.  I was impressed how even my youngest students were not only successful but also very motivated to learn this skill. 


Last year I place QR codes (and URL's) onto filing folders. I laminated them and introduced them as choice stations to my Kindergarten through second grade. I would have one iPad per station for students to scan and watch a short video about a skill.  This was one of the most popular stations, button sewing.


Early this summer I offered a free digital lesson on Yarn Brading. Please go to my TpT store to download your free gift.  If you are interested in investing this Button Sewing, (click here).

Monday, July 25, 2016

2016/17 Art To Remember

It's that time of year friends... We have to start talking... only talking about the start of 2016/17 school year.  Last year, I started the fall out with a fundraiser called Art to Remember.  This was new to the school that I was working at and it was well received.  Parents asked me to do it again.

I'm not ever going to fundraise for my curriculum.  Art is important and it should be funded through the schools budget.  I will, however, fundraise for my school...  Art is unique right?? It can often create a product.  Through Art to Remember and other companies similar, they take that artwork and create products such as t-shirts, jewelry, water bottles and so much more.  These products are adorned with the art that the students of my school have created.  Some of the proceeds from this event is earned by my school and the parents of our school receive a great gift with beautiful artwork on it. 

Sure, I like the fact that my school gets a few extra dollars from this event, however, for me, it's about providing a service to the families of my school.  I get to choose the percentage that can be profited off from the sales of Art to Remember.  I always choose the least amount of profit as to assure the most accessibility to all financial situations. No one is obligated to purchase, but it's offered to all that participate (in my case, all 800 students).  I also love the fact that it advocates for the arts.  Parents will see the work that their student has created and perhaps will want to purchase and share it with others. It's also a spectacular gift and the way I have my Art to Remember set up, I will get the ordered products before Christmas (as long as I stick to my timeline). 

It sounds like a lot... right?? I thought that I would make a video explaining how I run Art to Remember in my classroom.  I feel like it's a obtainable project for any teacher to take on.  If you have any questions don't hesitate to write me in the comment.  Also, if you want to learn more or even book an event with your school, be sure to check out Art to Remember's website. (click here)


In the upcoming weeks, I will be sharing my plan for this year, Art to Remember projects. Be prepared to have many lessons to choose from that will make your fundraising adventure a breeze. 

Friday, July 22, 2016

Preparing for a Maternity Leave from your Art Classroom


No, not me.  I'm not expecting a baby in my life until my two kids grow up and have kids of their own.  I'm not writing this post to announce anything in my world... but more as a response to Jessica Smith on Facebook.  This is why I love being a part of professional social media #PLN's (personal learning networks), it starts such good conversations. Jessica writes this...


I did respond to her on her post but my mind is bubbling with thoughts of how to prepare for a maternity leave.  I had to write a post and hopefully you will comment and add to the conversation as well. 

I had my son 10 years ago.  He was due on Christmas but decided it would be better to come for Thanksgiving.  I worked so hard the first three months of school preparing every aspect of my leave.  I set up every lesson and prepped the materials.  I wrote detailed notes on every class and every student.

Baby two came two years later.  She came in November too. This time, I didn't plan much.  I had some curriculum books and handed them over, I talked to my teachers to support my sub with their homeroom classes and they did.  I gave some goals but only concepts, not lesson plans.

Both times I came back after my 12-week leave, the classes were the same.  Students jumped back into my classroom expectations. They learned what they learned while I was gone.  The supplies had been used and cleaned up, and life went on.  That was the main thing I learned.  I have pride in my job, and want my students to succeed... but life goes on with or without me there. So here are a few bullet points to think about when preparing for any leave from your art studio... maternity or otherwise. 

  • Your sub is not a sub... it's your student's new teacher. When you have a sub in for a couple of days, the substitute teachers job is to come in and teach what you have prepared for them.  When it's a long-term sub, they become the teacher. They have prep time, they have access to your class grades/rosters, they are a teacher and can/should have the responsibility of a teacher.
  • Because your sub is the new teacher, trust them to teach.  For my second maternity leave, I laid out the concepts I wanted her to cover rather than the lesson.  I told my sub to teacher line in first grade, and texture in 2nd grade, and so on... This way the guest teacher in your classroom is welcome to become passionate about his/her lessons.  It's not fun to teach a lesson you aren't excited about, so let your sub plan something they can be passionate about.
  • Let them lump lessons.  If your K's and 1st grade can both cover lines at the same time, suggest that your guest teacher teach the same lesson... maybe just beef up the lesson a bit more for your 1st grade. Lumping lessons simplifies your subs visit.
  • You can give suggestions of mediums you would like your sub to use.  If you really want to use that metal tooling you have in your backroom... simply put a note on it saying, do not use.  If you have a boatload of paper maché ask them to do at least one project with that medium. It's ok to restrict your supplies a bit. You are still in charge of your budget.
  • Give guidelines for classroom management, but let go of that too.  It's great to have consistency in your classroom but it's not your classroom when you are gone.  Your sub must be able to manage your classes the way it feels best for them.  Step back and let them do so.  Your principal will be a great resource for anyone who needs a little extra help. 
  • Rely on your co-workers and support staff.  Absolutely leave notes on students with special needs and maybe even different abilities... but also allow your sub to make their own judgment.  Ask your paraprofessionals to assist with suggestions with students they are assisting.  Ask your teachers to be a resource for their classes. Talk to your special ed team or and nursing staff to have them check in with your sub while you are out.  Teacher support one another, you just have to ask for it. Plus, this is a great way for your sub to feel comfortable in your building if the teaching and support staff of the building have been asked to come in and help them.
  • If you don't have curriculum to support your guest teacher, leave them links to art education blogs and resources.  Send them to Deep Space Sparkle, Cassie Stephens, Shine Brite, Painted Paper, Art Projects for Kids, Art is Basic, Mr. E, and so many other great resources I have scrolling on my blogroll to the right. These are amazing resources that can support anyone teaching in an art studio (leave or not). 
  • When you are on leave... be on LEAVE... don't check in on your classroom. In fact, I might even go as far as to suggest not leaving your phone number or contact information.  There is no need... Your time should be focused on the new addition to your household, or healing your body depending on your reason for a leave.  Put your focus there.  Your classroom is going to be fine.
  • Take as much time as your finances will allow.  This is a once in a lifetime situation.   With both leaves I took the max amount of weeks my district would allow me to take.  I never regretted it.  But I have seen teachers in my building sad, sleep deprived, and stressed out because they came back too soon from a leave. Take care of you.
I have a feeling this list will grow with comments fromviewerss.  Let this be a conversation jumping off point, what do you disagree with, agree with, or would add? Share in the comments below. 

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Bit-O-Bio, Georgia O'Keeffe


Here's a little Hahn history... I failed Art History.  I can remember stories and images, but for Pete's sake... I couldn't remember who and when... and never had a gift for spelling. So, take two, Art History the second time around got me a solid 'C'.  That is why this project is so important for me. I want to help my students be more excited about art history than I ever was.


So far it's working for me.  I have fallen in love with every artist that I have researched.  Georgia O'Keeffe was so fun to study.  There are so many films about her and even better... WITH her.  She's was the one explaining her philosophy, her thoughts, her struggles.  I love finding the big messages for these artists.  Not the drama, and scandal... just the heart.


Some of the big ideas from Georgia was that she wanted/needed to create her own art... not copy someone else.  She found full inspiration from nature. She was truly in love with nature, the flowers, the bones, the shells... it all represented life. She was happy because she did what she loved.  Big ideas, right??



And so I present to you my 3rd Bit-O-Bio... 
Georgia O'Keeffe (click here)


Tuesday, July 19, 2016

July: TpT Must Follows


To celebrate Teachers Pay Teachers #BestResourceEver campaign, I thought I would start a new monthly practice. I want to highlight three TpT stores every month.  I thought about doing this as I started getting feedback on my TpT Store (MiniMatisse).  It has been mentioned many times that there must be more visual art teachers doing TpT and sharing their work. So here we go, let me share my first 3 'Must Follows' on Teachers Pay Teacher. 

Painted Paper Art
I'm sure you have heard of Laura Lohmann from Painted Paper Art (such a popular art blog). She also has an amazing TpT store with great lesson plans and resources for teachers. She has recently put out the most 'Art Teacher Specific' planner I have ever seen.  It's a must have for sure.  This planner is jam-packed with amazing guides to help you plan your year.  She even has different styles for every art teacher's taste. Give it a look, I'm sure you'll love what you see. Click here for Painted Paper Art TpT Store. 


Purple Paintbrush
Purple Paintbrush is a new resource for me.  This New York teacher has some great lesson plans.  Her lessons seemed to be geared towards elementary level but I'm sure you could adapt some lessons to middle school. What caught my eye was her one-point perspective lesson.  Recently, I shared my self-paced, one-point perspective lesson on TpT.  It gives students choice at the end of learning the skills of one-point.  I give two choice lessons in the package, I also have an extension where teachers can add two more options to their students choice lessons.  This would be another great option for a choice project. Adding this one-point lesson owould give students more choice and they would be able to learn from a hard copy rather than the digital ones that I have created.  It gives students options for how they learn as well as what they make. 
Purple Paintbrush lesson could be used as an extension lesson for One-Point Perspective
Several months ago I was honored to present with Melinda Nguyen at a NAEA Webinar.  I've been a big fan of her blog for a long time.  Art With Mrs. Nguyen has many resources that she shares freely with Art Teachers all over the world.  She also continues to add to her Teacher Pay Teacher store with valuable lesson plans. 

Art with Mrs. Nguyen
Mrs. Nguyen also has a wonderful one-point perspective lesson plan that would be a great option for a choice project. click here

Be sure to follow all of these great Teachers Pay Teachers stores.  They are full of amazing resources. I will continue to highlight TpT 'Must Follows' once a month so if you know of a store that you feel is a great resource, let me know in the comments.