Wednesday, December 30, 2009
Judging by the intensity of the kinder's faces, I gathered that they enjoyed this project a great deal. The goal is to teach the children color-wheel basics. Begin with three colors of paint (red, yellow and blue) and see what happens. It's really not about getting the paint blended perfectly, it's really just about blending to see what happens.
Start with a 12" x 18" white drawing paper ( I use Tru-Ray) and a muffin-type paint palette filled with yellow, red and blue paint.
I thought a great deal about how to teach this blending lessons and I tried a few different strategies. The best way to start, it seems, is to have the children fold their paper in half lengthwise and make a crease. Unfold then fold again in the other direction, then again. The goal is to create 8 squares.
Now, this part is optional, but if you want, have the children dip their paintbrush in the yellow paint and paint along the crease lines. This defines the eight squares a bit better.
Next, the painting begins. Have the children dip their paint brush in the yellow and in one square, paint a small dot. In another square, paint a ring or a large circle. In another square, paint a circle so big it touches the edges of the square.
Then proceed with red paint. Clean brushes first. Paint a dot in one square (it could be a square with the yellow circle). Paint a large circle then paint an even larger circle in another square. Encourage the kids to use the same squares as in the previous step. This way, the paints will touch and therefore blend.
You can see where this is going. Next comes blue and you do the same thing all over again.
Inevitably, a few kids will begin mixing colors, or use a color different from the rest of the class...no biggie. Let them explore the paint in whatever order they like. I know some classroom teachers do not like this as it demonstrates all too clearly that the students can't listen and follow directions, but for me...well, I just don't think it matters. They're in an art zone and will think differently.
The timing of this lesson is tough to predict. I teach 5 kinder classes. Two classes finished in one 35-minute session and the other three did not. My recommendation is not to rush it. Use two class periods. The first class for the primary colors then the second class for secondary colors (created by mixing, not poured from a bottle).