In our classroom we like to give students lots of ways to process information. They listen, they speak, they sketch, they observe, they write, they read, they move, they sing, they paint…
They are saturated with learning experiences. Today we painted. But it was just a part of a series of experiences to help students look closely, notice details, and then learn to sketch roundness by using curved lines and shading with their sketch pencils. They started with pumpkins harvested from our school garden. They moved to tomatoes, also harvested in the garden. They studied Vincent Van Gogh and learned about the concept of still life. They arranged their own still life composition and photographed it using their iPads. They used the photo as a guide for sketching their unique composition–and also learned some techniques for showing the overlapping of the fruits and vegetables. And then today they tried the same techniques using watercolor paints.
These six, seven, and eight year olds saturated their compositions with the brilliant colors of fall based on their experiences with the actual objects.
In this photo you can see the gorgeous sketch (that the student made earlier this week) that guided this careful painting. Saturating students in a variety of experiences related to a topic allows for deeper and more meaningful learning. This learning is not just about art–although the art is beautiful–it’s also science and history and math and reading and writing…and so much more.
And conveniently, this week’s Weekly Photo Challenge is saturated. It talks about color…but there is so much more to saturation than color, in my opinion!
How do you saturate yourself and your students in learning experiences?