Thursday, February 1, 2018

#Crush on the Medium Crayon

Crayons are the most common Art medium in the Art Studio, so it's important that you spice it up once and a while. One way that I like to do that is shifting the shape.  This is something you can do with old crayons that you might have had donated or simply from use of the art room. The best part is, I didn't use an oven for this. Check out my previous post

Water soluble crayons are a lot of fun too. They blend well (with water) and they give students a new way to think about crayons. I used them for my process pigs but found them to be a little soft and therefore breakable.  I think I would use these for 'small group' or for my own kids at home. Here is a video showing the process of this pig.  

For the organization of your crayons, I have created little pouches for my kids.  This was more for my mini's at home, I wouldn't do this for classroom use, but my kids loved the crayon pouches and use them even today, several years later.  Click here.

My favorite use of crayons is Construction Paper Crayons. If you have never brought these into your classroom, this is a 'must add'. Crayola identifies these crayons differently with a black paper label so I can easily keep them separate from my other crayons.  I even keep them in different containers and only bring them out for special projects.  It makes the kids get a little more excited about the medium.

These crayons literally do what they say... They draw on construction paper! They are surprisingly effective as well! One project where I used these crayons is my 'They All Saw a Cat' lesson.  Instead of using the medium on construction paper, I used them on tempera cake paints. It worked really well! Clicking here will bring you to the cat lesson.

Another construction paper crayon example is these continuous line owls. I'm always amazed by this lesson and how unique they turn out.  Lesson plan and video can be found by clicking here

And then there is crayon resist!

Using crayons as a resist is always a good use of the medium. I have often worked with my young artist to encourage craftsmanship using crayons.  I talk about how to 'make sure all the white spots are gone'. I have them check with neighbors to assure that skill is done correctly... some might call that peer assessment.

When ordering, I always order several multicultural pack of crayons for self-portraits. I talk about how there are many 'right answers' for skin tones and in the past, I have opened up a skin check station for students to really focus on matching the color of skin they have with the best fit of a crayon.

Once the crayons are applied correctly, it's safe to watercolor over them. If you want to read more about the self-portraits project, please click here.

Another crayon resist project is my Mackintosh Lesson.  This one has video and student examples as well. Click here

Finally, another way to spice up the medium crayons is by creating a three-dimensional project like a stuffed fish with them.  We used the crayons in a traditional way, however, the end result was exciting because we took the project and 'stuffed it' to become a soft sculpture. Click here for the full stuffed fish lesson. 

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