Wednesday, December 1, 2010


The WES Kindergarten artists have been learning about
American artist and author,
Faith Ringgold was born in 1930 and grew up in New York City's Harlem.  She is most known for her "story quilts".  She adapted one of these quilts, titled
"Tar Beach",
 into a children's book in 1991. This book was recognized as one of the most distinguished American picture books for children in 1992 when it was named a Caldecott Honor Book.
We spent a lot of time looking over the illustrations in Tar Beach, and decided to try creating versions of our own.

Here is our process...

The students began by painting a night sky background using different shades of tempera paint.
They thought about the direction of their brushstrokes as they blended the colors over the entire paper.

Then, using colored construction paper, they began cutting shapes as they pieced together a version of themselves flying through the sky.

They dipped their finger (aka their "Handy Dandy Tool") into the glue...

and then spread the glue onto their cut pieces of paper...  

before putting their paper shapes in place.
This technique allows for better glue control. 
The students were encouraged to think about size as well as how they would position the arms and legs of their person to give the illusion of flying.

Once their person was glued into place
it was time to add the stars. Small dots of glue were squeezed onto the paper...

and then sprinkled with glitter for that all important shimmer and shine!

Then, each student created a "quilted" border around the edges of a separate, larger piece of paper. Small, pre-cut squares of wallpaper were used for this. Loads of thanks to Mrs. Littlefield and Mrs. Gilblair for their help in pre-cutting these squares!

The Kindergartners had fun choosing from all of the different colors and patterns.  One little artist commented that they reminded her of her Grammie!

With the border complete, it was time to join their two pieces together...

and then join everyone's together... 

 to create one large story quilt. 
What an exciting event!

With this nice, long, curved wall in the Kindergarten wing, every single piece of art was able to be squeezed into this display
(98 paper quilt pieces in all, I believe).
That's one loooong quilt!

These pieces will remain on display through December.
We sure hope you'll fly by for a peek!

Sunday, November 7, 2010


The Kindergarten students have been busy in art these past few weeks
 exploring shapes and patterns using paint and markers.

They began with a watercolor technique called wet into wet
which simply means putting wet paint onto wet paper. 
They concentrated on holding the paint brush correctly
 while 'tickling' the paper with the brush.

They watched the paint 'explode' into beautiful designs on the wet paper.

They had to work quickly before the wet paper dried.

 It was fun to experiment with the colors.
They got some beautiful results while mastering the materials.

Next, they tried a more controlled painting style. 
 They began by using a permanent marker to draw the shapes we've been studying 
 (squares, rectangles, triangles, ovals, and circles).

 Then, using only one color, they painted the background with watercolor.

This took lots of control!
 They did a great job.

Once the paint was dry, they used markers to create patterns within each shape.

They were very creative...

and worked hard...

on the finishing touches.

There are over fifty pieces of art on display in the Kindergarten wing.

We invite you to stop by to view them!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


Each kindergarten class created one of the life size scarecrows pictured in the art display above.
We began by tracing one child from each class on a large piece of mural paper.
We discussed what SHAPES we found on the paper once the tracing was complete.
Then, working as a group, each class made decisions about specific COLORS and DETAILS they would like to include on their scarecrow. They worked well together gluing small pieces of torn construction paper into each area making sure to OVERLAP each piece.

The next week, the students created the vegetables for the garden by choosing and cutting the appropriate SHAPES and COLORS.  They also cut long, thin strips of paper for the straw hands, feet, and hair.

Scroll down to see a close-up of each scarecrow.
(You may click on an image to enlarge it.)

Ms. Defelice's class (L), and Ms. Gledhill's class (R)

Ms. Robinson's class (L), and Ms. Grant's class (R)

Ms. Wilson's class (L), and Ms. Millian's class (R)

This display is on the round wall in the kindergarten wing where it will remain through October. 
Please stop by to check it out!