Sunday, December 2, 2012

Classroom Art - Falling From Space - Self Portraits

This was a super fun, but time consuming art project. The kids first traced their shoes, then their hands. Once the feet and hands were in place, they drew a head and filled in the body. The effect makes it look as though they are falling. The added a background - most drew theirs as if they were in space. They outlined all of their marks in marker and filled in the rest with pencil crayon. This was all done on a rather large sheet of drawing paper to fit everything in.
one student drew his feet on fire as he re-enters the Atmosphere and lands on a sheep!
One of my students falling and drifting in space

Classroom Art - Fall Owls

Yes, I'm right into the Owl craze too. And why not? They are super cute and made for fantastic October Art. I began with the background. The students chose to paint with either blue or purple and then shaded in a little bit of black paint to capture that fall evening sky.
The trees were cut out of black construction paper. I threw up a picture of these button trees up on the Smartboard to give them a little bit of inspiration and let them go at their own tree designs.  Button trees were found here.

 For the owls I brought in a selection of scrapbook paper.  We used this sewing template as the basis for our owls. 
Once the children had all their pieces they glued them into place, creating a nice layered effect.  I think it's one of the cutest art projects I've done with kids!

Classroom Art - Poppies

Our grade 3 Remembrance Day Art this year was a lesson in painting. The backround we painted all black. We then took a piece of plastic wrap, placed in on top and scrunched it up and used our nails to scratch on top a bit. The kids thought the textured results were very cool. While this was drying we sponge painted the 3 stems. The Poppy heads we painted on three different types of paper: regular white paper, newspaper and construction paper. Once everything was dry we glued it all together. The centers are just black construction paper cut out in circles. I really liked the effect.

Classroom Art - Hidden Names

This was my first art project this year with my students (grade 3). They took the letters of their name and printed them as tall as the page. They oulined it in marker and then created random patterns in and around their letters with pencil crayon until the page was covered. Most kids chose to use black marker for their name, but the best creations used a less-obvious colour like orange and then coloured quite hard with their pencil crayons. Those names were truly hidden!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Hockey Mom times 2

Yep, that's right I now have 2, count 'em 2 hockey players in the family.
My big boy, playing Novice 2

My little boy starting IP 1

I am loving this dual hockey thing.  So far, so good.  Very busy though.  We've had several Saturdays now where we are at the first rink on the ice at 9-10 for one and then a run across town to have the second on the ice for 10:45.  Next week we have lucked out with back to back ice times at the same rink starting at 7:45.  (Kinda wondering what this will be like in 3 years if my daughter decides she wants to play too)
What I am amazed with in watching my youngest is thinking back on how for my oldest has come in 3 years of hockey.  He was the wobbly footed 5 year old skater, proud as punch to have a stick in his hand.  He's now faster footed that any of us in the family and has that hockey stride going on.  Where my 5 year old is figuring out how to push the puck down the ice, my 8 year old is working on a fairly decent and accurate wrist shot.  My youngest is starting to skate backwards a little, and my oldest skates backwards with confidence to play defense.  I'm really impressed with the coaching for both boys this year.  My little guy gets the small group attention that a beginning skater needs.  My oldest has noticed that practices have been kicked up a notch and they are drilling him hard and it is paying off.
So happy hockey season out there fellow hockey moms!  See you at the arena with a cup of Tim's in your hand :)

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Meet Charlie

Charlie - our Lab/Boxer/Shepherd mix puppy
1st Day of School, Class Picture

Tilt your head sideways to take a proper look. I don't know why blogger won't pick up the right view of this one. I took this picture on the first day of school and it is my work laptop background - the kids love seeing it every time I turn the smartboard on.

I've been away from blogging because I've been busy teaching

The last few months I've been so impressed with myself. I've been a regular blogger - like I was when I first started blogging during my mat leave, and then my other subsequent mat leaves. And I thought, Wow - look at that, regular posts and everything. Not only that, I've been getting projects done in the house too!
Then the last week of August hit - oh right, that work thing! Totally interferes with my projects and blog life. I really do love my job. This year marks the first year since my 8 year old was in the womb that I have my own classroom. I've been spending the bulk of my teaching time since then teaching k-8 music at multiple schools - a very busy life indeed, but one that afforded me a little more time at home. The need for a class of my own was rising up last year and it has worked out that (for this year at least) I'm on loan from the fine arts department of our school district and teaching grade 3. I have the sweetest little class (my own son is one of my students). I'm still keeping my hand in music teaching as I cover the school's music and teach a course of science 8 too. My teaching partner is very sweet and we get along great - it helps that we are both pretty easy going. Here's a few shots of my room set up before the kids arrived.


Sunday, September 2, 2012

DIY Play Kitchen - Furniture Makeover

Before - old TV/Entertainment Unit
After - cute play kitchen for my little girl :)

I've seen these play kitchens floating around Pinterest and I just fell in love with the idea.  But we didn't have an old TV unit to use.  I found this one for free on Kijiji and bribed a friend of mine with dinner to pick it up in her truck and bring it over.   Here's how the transformation went.
1st - we waited until the nice weather to do the makeover.  I originally got all the materials back in January as it was to be my daughter's birthday present - it's a good thing she's 2 and really won't remember that her present ended up being 7 months late :)
We brought the unit outside, took off the glass doors and shelves and started sanding it down to rough it up a bit.
I then started painting.  Because I used a darker, funky colour, it took a few coats to get it just right.  I used a smaller can of paint - a semi gloss.
Painting more coats to get the colour just right.
I then started adding on to make it more 'kitchen-y'.  I used a very small can of black semi-gloss to paint on the stovetop burners and oven glass.
I used a jig saw (yes, me using power tools!) to cut the hole for the sink.
The sink is a small mixing bowl I picked up at the dollar store.  I found a hook to become the tap (not seen in the picture below).  My husband was so kind to help me out with the drilling to fit everything on properly.  (He even drilled a hole into the metal hook so I could attach it to the kitchen.)
The stove top knobs are inexpensive drawer knobs - as are the handles for the stove and under-sink cupboard.
I found cafe rods for hanging up the curtains.  The curtains, I made with a metre of fabric from the local quilting store.

I am really pleased with the way it turned out.  My kids love it too.  The first day we had it ready (along with some kitchen toys) friends of ours were over with their 3 kids.  That made a total of 6 kids ranging in age from 2-12 playing restaurant together and loving it.
My daughter with her new kitchen up in her room, making me a pizza and a cup of tea.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Coast to Coast Canada - Part 1, PEI

We went coast to coast this summer. We live on the east coast of Canada. Our family lives out west. And we had 2 vacations. The first was camping on PEI which we try to do every summer. The second was a flight out west to BC to see family. Both vacations were really wonderful. Here's a little taste of both.
First PEI, camping with friends:
 Big Bike Ride
 Spaghetti Supper
 Lazing around the campfire
 Ready to boogie board
 We bury J every year
 The manditory pic of my kids on the beach
 Me with my sleeping beauty
 A Canucks fan on the red sands of PEI
 Enjoying the beautiful scenery
 Gorgeous View
 A little local brew
 Of course we roasted marshmallows
 Anne - oh wait, that's me
 A fisherman's salute
 Cows! - No trip to PEI is complete without it - best ice cream in the world!