Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Kindergarten Calder Sculptures

This project started out with a presentation that I put together about Alexander Calder. The students really enjoyed looking at his art and learning about mobiles. This was something completely different than what they had done in the past.

All of the students started out by tracing basic shape tracers onto construction paper. They cut these out and placed them into an envelope that we had created out of a piece of newsprint.

The next week, the student took markers and decorated all of their shapes with patterns. They used a hole punch to punch a hole in each shape.

Then they chose which project they wanted to build: a hanging mobile or a free-standing sculpture.

For the mobile, the children got a wire hanger. I showed them how to bend the hanger into a fun shape. This was not as easy as it sounds. Some of the children had a difficult time manipulating the thick wire.
They tied pre-cut yarn onto their shapes and then tied the shapes onto the hanger. Before we did this, we had a quick lesson on how to tie a knot.

For the sculptures, I had ordered Foam Carving Blocks from School Specialty. I cut them in half and gave each child 1 piece. Then they were allowed to get 2 pieces of Sculpture Wire. I showed them how to add the shapes to the wire first. Then they twisted the wire to make interesting designs. Each end was poked into the foam block.

Once the wire was in the block, they manipulated it and twisted it more to make it stand up the way they wanted it.

Some issues that I had with this project and which I will need to fix for next time:

1.  The hangers were difficult for little hands to bend.
2.  The shapes that the students used were too big. We will need to use smaller shapes.

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