Here is the first of my letters sharing what I am working on at These Days, and providing a
brief description of what your children have studied and produced in the past few weeks. It helps both teacher and student to look back on what has been accomplished.
The first official school year at These Days Art was quite successful by anyone’s standard: there were seven children in each of two weekly afternoon classes, taught from early September to late May. All of the children demonstrated growth in skills, techniques, and knowledge, but just as importantly, social, mental, and emotional growth.
To sum up what the students learned and produced in the last half of our fourth quarter, their emphasis was upon the creation of mobiles: planning and executing these kinetic sculptures over a period of 3-4 weeks.
Inspired by Mrs. Scholder’s collection of mobiles and dream catchers which have floated above their workspace all year, the students sketched their own versions, then proceeded with the second step, making clay medallions. They were told to “make it their own” as I so often say after showing many examples of a project. The children learned about clay shrinkage in the bisque firing because they had to make the holes for their fishing line to go through bigger than final result in order to fit it through. They learned about relief, design which is raised, and incising. The children exercised patience as firing is a slow process; there was painting the hanging of objects, and ultimately, stringing them to embroidery hoops. A few of their finished pieces and other art projects are shown here.