2014/2015 Art Studies

June 2015


5th Grade: Simple Machine Toys

YouTube Video

4th and 5th Grade: Proportions and
Facial Features

4th and 5th Grade:
 Papier Mache Sculptures

Grades 2 and 3: 
Artist Biography Posters

Grades K and 1
Meritum Paint Pro

 Students worked with Meritum Paint, an app we explored on our iPads. Our goal was to learn about the varieties of lines and the density of marks we could make. Students were  excited about the unexpected textural effects the program delivered. Navigating through the app was an experience in trial and error and the students learned as they tested their commands. 

Prior to this lesson, our youngest students rolled out clay slabs, applied objects for texture and pattern and once dry, the pieces were used for building and designing from their imaginations. Our previous stone wall building with miniature clay pieces was revisited in this lesson. 

May/June 2015

"Drop Into Art" continues  
 Fridays, 8:10 am for 4th and 5th graders

5th grade students work with origami!

A drawing in progress shows proportions of face.

Highlights of our most recent studies:

Kindergarten and Grade 1 : Drawing and recalling imagery and words from author, "Big Joe", who visited Happy Hollow and presented to our students. This visit was arranged by our librarian, Colleen Flannery and the students used rhyming to assist in their reading and spelling. In art we combined the written word and visual recall of Big Joe's looks, presentation positions (sitting or standing or moving) and his bird puppet. We incorporated Resist Painting techniques into our oil pastel drawings. 

Another ceramic clay lesson in slab tile cutting was our focus most recently. This lesson built upon a previous focus in which students used clay tiles to practice their balancing and spacing skills in building miniature "stone walls". 

Grade 2, 3 :  Creating "Artist Biography Posters" has fostered the development of a variety of skills amongst our students. Students read about artists from the past and retold some facts from an artist's life in individually designed posters. Layout, design, legibility, sentence structure and representational drawings/paintings were among the key areas of focus. Students enjoyed learning about what motivated artists and many were impressed by how difficult some "artist's" lives were. At the end of our unit, Picasso's painting was auctioned, amazingly in "real time", for over 179 million dollars and this spurred some good reflection on how and when art can be valued. 

A second grader enthusiastically
 works with Picasso's imagery!

A follow up activity which children enjoyed was having an opportunity to "act out" a painting from one of these many "famous" artists. 

Grade 4, 5  Drawing portraits of the human face provided students with a substantial period of time to focus on facial proportions and features: eyes, nose, mouth, ears, neck and hair.  "Realistic or representational " techniques were introduced by virtual artists as well as the teacher. Elements of Design which students worked with most were VALUE, line and shape.  

A 5th grader's drawing in 
progress shows proportional
guidelines and beginning use of values.

In 5th grade, 
our current project is:
"Simple Machine Toys"

April 2015

"Drop Into Art" continues this month on
 Fridays, 8:10 am for 4th and 5th graders. 
See February below for more information.

Ceramic Dragon by Sophie!

Ceramic masks in progress by 5th Graders

Kindergarten Student: 
Origami with Mr. La Fosse!

Mr. LaFosse presents to 5th Graders. In his hand
is his incredible origami alligator, folded from 
one extremely large (6 feet?) piece of paper!


This video is less than a minute and should download.

March 2015

"Drop Into Art" continues this month on
 Fridays, 8:10 am for 4th and 5th graders. 
See February below for more information.

Ceramic projects by students
 in grades two through five. 
On display this month:
 ceramic projects in 
main corridor!

February 2015

"Drop Into Art"

  8:10am  Fridays, February 6, 13 and 27
FREE: Grades 4 and 5  

New Sculptures beginning on the 13th. Bring in 
lots of newspaper if you have any around the 
house! Also, if desired, we will continue to work
 together on group projects: Papier Mache 
"Animal Heads".

Drop in any friday listed above. No sign up necessary.

All classes:

In January and February, students in grades K through 5 have learned techniques in working with clay. While ceramic clay has been our major focus, younger students also learned to work with model magic. Ceramic clay is in the ground right here in Wayland!  We learned about pottery as we observed the work from southwestern states as well as from the daily work of the people who live in Nigeria, Africa. Basic building structures were explored as students extended their knowledge weekly, slowly building up their own forming and joining skills.

A sampling of 4th grade ceramic sculptures and handbuilt pottery. Basic building structures include the pinch pot, cylinder, coil and slab forms.

Here are some masks left behind by our "Drop Into Art" students. The little ceramic birds were made
by 5th graders.

Kindergarten: Children have used ceramic and model magic clay. They learned about fossils and cave art which resulted in fossil like clay forms. Their paintings in the hallway have been taken down, and they will be sent home soon, along with all of their sculptures and work from the fall! They are so excited to take their work home and were thrilled to bring home their "Cat in the Hat" sculptures!

January 2015 
Happy New Year!

"Drop Into Art"
  8:10am  January Fridays 
FREE   Grades 4 and 5
 We will continue to work together on 
group projects: Papier Mache 
"Animal Heads".
Drop in. No sign up necessary.
 Held in the art room 
on all school day fridays 
in January.
Expect to work with a small team 
of students on this project. 

December Art Gallery
(Check back for more to come soon!)
5th Grade Ceramic Fish Plates: Glazed and kiln fired.

Kindergarten Work in Progress: The Cat in the Hat!
Students are lead through exercises to assist them in
 observing and drawing the features of the face.

Creative Illustrators/Authors: Dr. Seuss, Peter Reynolds

All of what we do in art class encourages positive 
and creative growth in our thinking process. In September,
we began our year with this in mind.

Check out the list:

Managing Impulsivity
Checking for Accuracy
Drawing on Past Knowledge
Using all the Senses
Precision of Language and Thought

News from the Art Room!

"Drop Into Art" for grades 4 and 5 continues through December on Fridays at 8:10 am. Free! Students are working in groups on papier mache animal sculptures and making great progress. We've had a tremendous turn out of students each week! 

Visit our art website listed under "Classrooms: Ms.Soeltz" for updated information on our art program at Happy Hollow.  During the month of December, the artwork of third grade students in Mrs. Akers' class is on display at the Town Building in the school committee room. Showcased is a collection of cut paper designs which explore symmetrical and asymmetrical balance. Lastly, please take a look at our artwork lining the main corridor at Happy Hollow. There you will find 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th grade work currently on display. Ceramic plates by 5th graders will soon be out for viewing in their hallway and the kindergarten "People" paintings are hanging over their coat hooks in the kindergarten/art corner of our school!

December 2014

Drop Into Art!

Drop Into Art!
  8:10am Fridays in November and December
 Grades 4 and 5 

 We will continue to work together on group projects: Papier Mache "Animal Heads".
Drop in. No sign up necessary. Held in the art room on all school day fridays in November and December.
Expect to work with a small team of students on this project. 

The above photos were taken of students who came to one of our November
"Drop Into Art" sessions. We have had as many as 30 students for this
before school activity.

October/November 2014

Drop Into Art!
  8:10am Fridays in November and December

 Grades 4 and 5 
 We will work together on a group project: Papier Mache Animal Heads.
Drop in. No sign up necessary. Held in the art room on all school day fridays in November and December.
Expect to work with a team on this project!

Studies in Recent Weeks
Kindergarten through fourth grade students have been busy building their portfolios of art work. We have worked with concepts of line, shape, balance and space. To varying degrees, children explored these concepts through drawing, cutting, pasting, painting. Our oldest students worked collaboratively on posters that addressed the question: "Why Art Class?" These posters are on display in our main corridor, along with a second grade display of art showcasing positive and negative space. Be sure to take a look at our school displays and also at our online gallery of images at the Visual Arts site for Happy Hollow School!

Art from Various Cultures
Taos Pueblo, New Mexico: A starting point for our ceramic clay unit.

What does this building have in common with the pottery below?


Examples of pottery from indigenous people of the southwestern United States. Students prepare for our clay unit as we observe and practice fine line painting and 3D vessel drawing. 

Animal Mola from Panama

Grades 2,3 and 4 studied balance in design in "Mola" Textile Art from Panama, Central America.

Kuna Woman: Artisan

Grade Two Positive and Negative Shape Paper 
Cuts Showing Symmetry and Asymmetry

Kindergarten mixed media focus:

 Representing humans, cutting shapes and turning
 line into shape letters.

The above poster is one example in which several 
students collaborated to show why we have 
art class: "Understand the World".

Artwork on the bulletin board in background was
made by 2nd and 3rd graders. Pictured are 
kindergarten students painting and
 cleaning up.

September 2014

Observations in the Courtyard

Students enjoyed special moments recording
 and imagining in the courtyard in June 2014.

The Awesome New Art Room!

We have a great view of our tree lined school yard and lots of
indoor space for students to create and spread out!

September News

 Welcome, parents and students, to another exciting school year of art exploration! This year we are very lucky to have a different art room with lots of space and our own sinks! Located in the back of the school between the kindergarten classrooms, our art studio showcases a gorgeous view of our tree lined schoolyard, which has already become a reference point as we learn about our natural world and the elements/principles of art.  With our new studio space, we have the facilities to better support our expanded use of ceramic clay and to spread out into more space to create! This is a very exciting change for our students and teachers and we look forward to a great year of work.

Beginning studies have included name/student identification activities involving line, shape, color, space and balance. Our youngest, new students to the school include all of the kindergarten and first graders, so there are lots of exciting introductions happening at this time! Fifth graders have worked collaboratively and enthusiastically on posters which address the question: Why Art Class? Among the answers: To engage and persist; practice craft; express thought and emotion; expand the powers of mind; look back into history; make cultural connections; realize what goes on in our world today. Be sure to look for these posters in our hallways in the near future! 

Wayland Visual Arts Curriculum

Our curriculum information can be found in the menu of the sidebar above. You will also find these listings in the sidebar: opportunities to volunteer, local art museums which host classes for children and adults and an archive of Happy Hollow's art program since 2009. 

Please check back for our gallery of work as it begins to fill up our school and our pages on this site and best wishes for a great year!

Christine Soeltz
Visual Arts Instructor

Subpages (1): 2013/2014 Art Studies