No man is an island as the saying goes, and it’s so important for kids to learn how to work as a team from an early age. Sports can be an excellent way for children to develop as a team-player, but so can art!
Whether it’s at home for a play date, in the classroom, or if you dare; at a birthday party getting kids to work together on a group masterpiece is so rewarding….and not just for them, for you too!
Fosters peer learning
Stimulates critical thinking
Encourages problem solving
Develops oral communication
Helps accept constructive criticism
Promotes leadership skills
Resembles the reality of everyday life
Think BIG, work on a large scale: A huge piece of paper taped to the wall to create a landscape. A big piece of fabric or canvas taped to the floor for a Jackson Pollock style painting project
A single finished piece, not a joining together of smaller individual work: This calls for true team work. Encourages appreciation and enjoyment of process over product
Low on instructions big on creativity: Group projects are not the time for step by steps. This is time for creative freedom
A theme v a thing: Projects need to open enough to cater for variety in age and ability. It’s more effective if kids are allowed to really run with this one rather than setting to many limits – it’s amazing what they come up with!
HOW…..TEACHER’S TOP TIPS:
Have space, even work outside
Be organised, with supplies and cleaning gear ready in advance
Careful delegation: If kids are young you will need to step in to help with who does what, or who works where
Be ready to referee and encourage; fair play, patience and respect
Let them have fun!
The photos feature in this article, are of a giant canvas we prepared
in our “I ❤ Cooking” English through art Summer camp in Madrid. The kids had a blast, and the work was stunning!
Using pencil, the kids worked together to draw food and cooking related things on a huge piece of material that was taped to the floor. Then using fabric paint we painted the items and added lots of abstract splashes and marks. Finally, we went back over the original drawings with black permanent marker.
In this article I encourage working on a single work, but the beauty of this one was that in the end we were able to cut the material into strips so that the children could bring them home for beautiful table runners.
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This is one of my favorite kid’s crafts so far this year, and as for the children…they LOVED it! Not alone is this project great fun to make, and super cute to look at, but the kids just love the fun toy they are left with. The only drawback? They’ll be so obsessed with trying to get the fly into the frog’s mouth that you won’t be able to get them to tidy up …. Have fun!
What you need
Green & red water-based paints
String (80 cm approx)
Paint the toilet-roll insert green on the outside & red on the inside, & leave to dry.
One end of the toilet-roll insert will be the mouth of the frog, and the other will be his bottom!
Now, tie the bead to one end of the string
Drop the the other end of the string into the toilet-roll insert
Using tape, stick the string to the inside of the toilet-roll insert, near his “bottom”
Staple the end for his bottom closed
Draw, and cut out 4 legs from green card
Staple or glue the legs to the frog’s body
Draw a fly, & glue it to the bead
Finally, using markers add some details such as eyes and spots. Remember, kids may need you to explain that his mouth is the red, inside of the toilet-roll insert, and when adding detail we are looking down on him from an elevated, or bird’s eye view
Nature is full of inspiration when it comes to colour and texture combination for decorating your home. For us city dwellers it’s important to think outside the box when it comes to finding mother nature’s stimulus. Yes, visit your local parks and green areas, but what about the museums?
Just this week I had the pleasure of visiting the Museo Geominero Madrid, a treasure trove for any design lover. The museum houses an incredible collection of rocks, minerals and fossils, which demonstrate nature’s ability to outdo us every time when it comes to creating stunning texture and color combinations.
Whether you are interested in designing jewellery, embellishing material or furniture, or painting a room in your house, these marvels are instant mood boards that won’t leave you lacking ideas!
As spring is in the air, we decided to take a little nature into the studio this week, and create these beautiful bubble flowers. The children had a lots of fun blowing bubbles, and creating these eye-catching art works, which were nice gifts for the Mummys and Daddys too!
This work was created with my 5 to 7 year old students, at my weekly “English Through Art” classes in Taller Imagina, Madrid.
Contact me about teaching classes to your children, or at your workshop or centre.