So First Graders are still working on motor skills somewhat. The objectives for this were to make horizontal and vertical lines with a ruler, to be able to talk about Mondrian, to make artwork using geometric shapes, and to name the primary colors.
First I had the kiddos look at my Mondrian slides, briefly. He's an artist I really like, but I tend to not elaborate very much about his history. Simple is simple, right?
Then I talked them through how to make real horizontal and vertical lines on their 12 x 18 paper. I had them think about Balance and making some spaces open, while others were more filled in with smaller shapes. I took a lot of time showing them how to hold the ruler still and draw with their other hand.
Then, that same class period, I had them paint in some of the boxes on their paper. I again emphasised Balance, and suggested they pick three boxes to make red, three blue, and three yellow, making sure they were spaced out all over. Some of them still didn't really do that, but it was fixable with the next step.
The following class period, I pulled up "Broadway Boogie Woogie" and we looked at it more closely. I had the first graders go over all their pencil lines with Sharpie. Then, I had them use glue sticks to add smaller construction paper squares and rectangles onto their paper. I told them how they could stack the shapes, put them in empty boxes, or glue them right on top of the places they painted before. I also had long strips of black paper in the box that they could use to emphasise some of their black lines. As they glued things on, they had to keep everything horizontal and vertical. No diagonal placement was allowed!
So we broke some of Mondrian's rules a little, but I am much more pleased with the results this time around:
Having the whole group working in Primary colors made me think how great these would look all hanging together in the hallway. That is, if I EVER had time to hang all that stuff up! I have over 800 students...but that's another story!