Wednesday, July 31, 2013

For all my Duck Tape loving friends

I recently discovered this blogger and this post for a duct tape watch.  This will take you away from your wallets and bows for the day but I thought you might find these to be fun.  Click HERE for the link.  I wonder how you might be able to use this band technique for other things?

Monday, July 22, 2013

Crayola Hue crayons

Just found these fun boxes of crayons at a local discount store.  The boxes are by color families, so all the hues of the same color are in one box.  These are "Keen green", "Playful purple," "True blue," "Red hot," "Hello sunshine" (yellow) color combinations.   I immediately thought warm and cool colors so was disappointed to not find any box to represent the oranges.  They also have boxes of neons and pastels.   So much fun!   Think about creating a piece of art using only one color box family.  Experiment and let me know how it goes.   I'll be enjoying my boxes of color hues, too!

Monday, July 8, 2013

Recycled materials to make a mobile like Calder

Calder Mobile
I've talked about Alexander Calder with a few of you over the years but he is not an artist we have regularly learned about.  What makes him especially interesting is that he once lived in the Berkshires and the Museum has many of his early works in an interactive exhibit.  You can learn more about the exhibit by clicking this link. Along with his early work with toys, Calder is best known for his sculptural work with stables and mobiles.   Stables don't move, mobiles are sculptures that move.  Here is a photo of one of his works.

You can construct your own mobile with just a few objects you will find around your house.  Here is the list:
Empty plastic milk or water container (1/2 gallon size works best)
3 pipe cleaners or old telephone wire like the twistee wire we use at school
9 paper clips
sharpie or other permanent type marker
hole punch

Have an adult cut the spout and bottom off of the carton and discard or save for a later project.  Next cut the carton in half so you can have a rectangular piece of plastic to work with.  Use the marker and trace or draw a shape(s) of your choice onto the plastic.  I cut out hearts.   Make them big, at least 3" or bigger.  Cut out a minimum of four shapes.  If you cut more,  you will need one pipe cleaner for every two shapes you make and extra paper clips, too.
Now, using the sharpie, decorate the shapes with lines and shapes.  Make some lines thick by putting more pressure on your marker and some thinner with lighter pressure.  Use color markers and color in some of the sections if you would like.  Make the patterns and designs interesting.  You will only need to draw on one side of each shape.  Punch a small hole at the top of each shape to thread the paper clips through.
Next, fold each pipe cleaner in half and twist a small circle at the top.  You will use the circles to connect everything together.  Make an open hook at the end of each pipe cleaner.  Here are some photos to help.

The view is prettier here but no
movement because the air is not
circulating enough
Hang to get them to move
in front of the air conditioner
worked well.
Use paper clips to attach the shapes to
the pipe cleaners. A paper clip is attached at the top to hang it with as well.  Bend the ends of the pipe cleaner all the way on itself to keep the paper clips from slipping off of the end.
Just like Alexander Calder, you have created a mobile!

Paper Chain People

I recently discovered this cool print out for cutting paper chain people here.  I have created these in the past for free art days but nothing as elaborate as these.  They are really cute.  So, print one out, accordion fold (fan) and begin to cut.   After you have finished, decorate each small person in a different way.  It's going to rain this afternoon, this will be a great way to spend your time and create something new!

Friday, July 5, 2013

Great Free Activity

Berkshire Museum

A wacky and mystifying night full of fun science experiments! Spend the evening walking on water, making glow-in-the-dark slime, creating your own hover craft, plus many more family friendly experiments.
Please help us get the word out by sharing this information with students, parents, and other teachers. The event is free and open to the community.

Presented in partnership with the Transition Team of Pittsfield and Sabic Innovative Plastics. 
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Thursday, July 4, 2013

Toothbrush Art

Okay, I did not come up with this idea but it sounds like so much fun that I wanted to give you all a chance to try it anyway.  

I found it on the website: blogmemom. Just click this link to see the original post.  She sounds like a Mom with some really cool ideas for projects with her family.

Art activities: motorized toothbrush art.

If you try this art activity, you will witness some tricks an electronic toothbrush can do –  the way it can paint. Yes, toothbrush painting done by a toothbrush.
Continuing with the toothbrush art activity, we did another art project using motorized toothbrush – the battery operated one with vibrating bristles.

You will need only liquid water colors, a table (outdoor) and an electronic toothbrush. We used an Oral-b Pulsar toothbrush to make the little guy paint for us..
In case you are wondering we used an old pulsar toothbrush.
materials for the project
My preschooler dipped the brush into liquid water colors and placed he brush face down on the paper and watched it in excitement. The brush vibrates and makes a nice smooth movement around the table.
moving art actvity
 The brush would begin to form a semi-circle and she would slowly nudge it to form a full circle. Couple of times the brush moved around and did form a perfect circle all by itself. Here are the three beautiful circles we created.
circles made
She explored with many colors and tried forming overlapping circles.
concentric circles
 It was truly FUN to watch the toothbrush move around and paint by itself.  She also re dipped her brush with paint every now and then to keep the color going. You will see that the top bristles are the ones which are mostly making the marks.
moving around the toothbrush
She got the brush to make swirly lines patterns.
painting with toothbrush
The child can be as much or as little involved in this electronic painting art activity. Ofcourse most kids would want to be VERY much involved. It also showed my kid to make very minimal and gentle movements to get the best result.
lines made with toothbrush
A cool variation: Try to collect many electronic toothbrushes and let them ALL SPIN at the same time with different colors. OOh I’d love to try that!
 brush marks
Recap of notes:
Flat. smooth surface with minimal cover on the table
Thin paints- best bet liquid water colors
Dip with colors during the process to keep the continuity of colors.
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Monday, July 1, 2013

Check out this terrific interactive page

Many of you will remember following along with the video "Squiggles, Dots and Lines" during the last days of school.  Here are more ideas for you straight from the website of Ed Emberley.  Just click this link. and you will go directly to his page.  As I look out the window at the heavy rain coming down, I'm thinking this would be a great way to spend my time.  Join me!