Thursday, October 20, 2011

Dia de los... Skeletons!

We all are guilty of creating art projects that relates to holidays at one point or another. I just happen to love using holidays from other countries! Dia de los Muertos, the Day of the Dead, a fun and festive celebration in Mexico, but can be found in some other cultures as well!

I worked together with the World Languages teacher in my building to come up with a cross curricular lesson that involves a Spanish holiday and of course my curriculum as well.  We timed it so that she would review with them all the cultural tidbits they needed, and worked on the language of it- even took time to eat some sweet skeletal treats with the kids!  Then I asked them to teach me in my classroom, and showed them some fun artwork to relate our project too.

The reactions were adorable! They are fascinated by skeletons! It did take some time to get them out of the "Halloween" mode of "eww gross" and "wow that scary" and into the celebration of remembering those before us, and "making fun of death, not eww!".

We did have a grand ole' time though creating it! (In a way, it ties into health to- The Skeletal System!) I showed them skeletons, and skulls, and we used simplified shapes to create a skull and body. They had a choice though, they could do a scene of skeletons dancing and celebrating, or they could do skulls in a unique composition around the page facing in different directions.  

Each picture was unique, and each was fun and festive! The only requirement was that the composition be balanced and creative, and that they decorate with design details! 
Still Working on it, but Looking Great

The last step was painting, where we learned how to control our paints to paint a translucent line to make our skeletons glow.  We also used a wash technique for our sky and ground, and learned how to blot our brushes to prevent puddles. I know, all basic stuff but all important stuff that needs to be learned!

Aren't they gorgeous though!?

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