Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Masks 3rd Grade

Every year, I teach a mask unit to the 3rd graders.  It's one of my faves.  There is a lot of buy in from the kids- they are so excited when I drop the word clay- and they'll do just about anything I ask, knowing that mask making is upon us.  In various years, I've presented a variety of themes; this year, my theme was... no theme.  Yep, I didn't make any requirements such as animal theme, or Day of the Dead Skulls- no requirement other than they had to choose a feeling, or a main idea, and their work would support their idea by shape, color, texture, etc.  A lot of choice.  We did practice sketches, talked about various ways they might approach this, and looked at a lot of masks, discussing the first reaction those masks gave us.  When it was time to paint, I again offered choice.  One side of the room was reserved for acrylic paint, the other for the oil pastel/black paint resist technique floating around pinterest lately.  And, finally, I had wire, pipe cleaners, feathers, beads and sparkles available. 

Thoughts?  I am fried.  This was a lot to manage.  It's not for the faint of heart. 
Did all students succeed?  Well- hmmm.  Not all of the masks were pretty, or well done.  Many students should have spent more time on their painting (but that's usually the case).  BUT- my kids are delighted. They love their creations.  They were so excited to take them home, and I didn't settle one argument about who did which mask.  They simply knew their work- they were attached.  And dying to see their masks at every stage.  There's a lot to be said for that. 
Will I do this level of choice all the time?  I'm not sure.  Will I increase the opportunities for choice?  You bet!


Heather@ArtIntertwine said...

Quick question-would you set up all 3 station choices again or did most students gravitate more to one particular station? I'd love to see more finished masks, thanks for sharing.

Mrs. Fritz said...

Heather-Most kids chose to paint, even though I showed a finished example of each. I'd still set up 3 stations (for crowd control) with 2 being paint, and one being oil pastels. My big change would be on decoration day, I'd set up my tables as stations-feather, wire, pipe cleaner, etc. Here is an artsonia link for the masks. Most are uploaded.

Heather@ArtIntertwine said...

Hey, I've nominated you for a Liebster Award

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