The first week I visited the classroom, the students and I spent 10 minutes getting to know each other. I told them a little bit about myself and why I was there, and then the students told me their names and favorite color. Then, we had a 15 minute lesson about the Elements of Art. I showed them a PowerPoint and we discused the use of these elements in famous works of art. Elements of Art are key fundamentals of the visual art making and understanding process. When one understands these elements and how they interact with one another, they can talk about art and identify the different aspects of art more readily.
Next, the students used a familiar medium, construction paper crayons, and drew the first element we talked about, line, on their contruction paper. They could used any type of line and any color they wanted. Next, they passed their papers to the person sitting next to them and drew the next element, shape. This process continued until they had drawn the five elements we had discussed previously on five of theirs and their classmates’ papers.
Some things I learned from this activity was that the kids were more likely to draw things they were familiar with, like a box or circle, rather than organic or abstract shapes and lines. The kids were also less likely to layer their work on top of previous drawing, but instead find a white space that had not been drawn in, until I encouraged them to fill up the whole page. Even then, there were many papers with white areas.
I was surprised to find the kids remembered the elements very well. They would call out the next one in the list before I announced it. This made me note we had gone over the material enough for them to understand and remember it for the rest of the activity.
Powerpoint: Elements of Art
The principles of true art is not to convey, but to evoke. — Jerzy Kosinski