Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Oil Pastels & Watercolors

Levi & Julia joined us in the art group today.  We started by talking about the seasons.  The props I used were

winter: hat, scarf
summer: swimsuit, sea shell
spring: flowers, umbrella
fall: leaves in orange/red

At the table we traced sandpaper letters of L-E-A-F then wrote in cornmeal or rice.

Next we worked on a city scape like here.  Before giving them the brushes, I talked about treating the art materials with respect.  We practiced using gentle and long strokes.  Once I passed out the water colors they needed many reminders not to scrub with the brush, as they're used to doing with markers and crayons.
Initially, I thought I'd give them full sheets of paper to paint but quickly realized the boys were in no shape to sit so long. They covered 1/2 sheets quite well.  Below is the final project, after it dried we added buildings and windows.  The picture on top is the one I made to show them how it would look.  If you plan to do an art group with friends, I encourage you to practice first (w/o children).  While creating, think of what you'll say to help the children make their masterpieces. 
The inspiration for the next project was from here.  
I gave them each a cardboard leaf and asked them to trace it on the water color paper with a pencil.  The tracing was harder for them than I expected.  Some of it was my fault, b.c the pencils weren't sharp.

Along with a reminder (for the boys!) to be gentle with the art supplies, they used oil pastels to trace their pencil markings.  They enjoyed the pastels a lot.  My hubby said they were his favorites to use as a child (they're only $4 at Michael's).
And we used liquid water colors over the pastels.  They all needed the reminder to "use long strokes, in one direction." The boys' final product:Julia would have been able to sit and create much longer than the boys - and they're all the same age!  After art group, we all went to a fun story time at the library.


MerrandaVK said...

How wonderful! What a great group you have going there. Great tips too, for those of us wanting to try this project.

My daughter could paint all day long, and I am lucky if my son who is a year and a half older would sit still for 2 minuites to paint :) I am really impressed with how well the boys pictures turned out.

Julie said...

I am so jealous you have kids to do art with... Eli is now is school and Jasper is too young... miss it!

Jennifer said...

I love the art group! I'm getting great ideas from you.... thanks!!

John and Pam said...

I love it! Great picture JI!

Tanya said...

Hello - I was just reading and noticed your post about good chapter books for young kids. I am a mom (15 years, 3 kids) bookseller (13 years) and lifelong kid's book lover. I just started a blog reviewing kid's books in an effort to help parents find the right books for their kids. In addition to reviews, I have reading lists (like good read out louds for kids 5 and under) as well as tips on how to determine reading levels and more. Hope you will check it out and find it useful! Regards - Tanya at


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