Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Leader in Me Posters

I decided to make my own posters that were specific to the language I use in my classroom with my students relative to art. If you're a "Leader in Me" school and would like to snag yourself an 8x10 copy of each sign, check them out here.

Monday, August 14, 2017


This will be our second year as a Leader in Me school. Last year, it was knew to the kids and they were still clinging to our old extrinsic reward PBIS system. We're rolling out PBIS in a big way with kick off assemblies and hopefully the kids will be on board. I've decided to incorporate LIM into my bulletins this year.

My students will instantly recognize me with my Green Bay Packers apron and checked Van's sneakers. I'm sure they will get a chuckle out of my alter ego. I ordered a Wonder Woman apron online. I'm thinking first day I will pin it to my normal apron, and when I teach, I can flip it around to reveal my WW cape. Cape + Apron...Capron? Will have to channel my inner Cassie Stephens.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Summer of Books

This summer I've been stocking my bookshelves with amazing finds that I can't wait to use in the classroom. My usual source for obtaining school books is paperbackswap. When they don't have the book I'm looking for my new go-to is thriftbooks. They have very low minimums to qualify for free shipping and for every $50 spent I get a reading reward which is a $5 coupon. They have a referral program as well for additional earnings. My most recent order has me very excited for next year.

While it's rare for me to pay full price, I did snag an amazing book from hobby lobby as well. I don't usually buy how to books for teaching techniques, but I was really drawn to the illustrations in the book. It was like getting 10 project examples so totally worth it (after my 40% coupon).

I've been painting my own samples from the ideas in the book over the past few weeks and and putting the finishing touches on corresponding lesson plans.

This is not a sponsored post, but if you'd like to check out thriftbooks, please click my referral link.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Dala Horse Lesson

So very excited to share a new lesson. I feel like I haven't been doing enough folk art with my students and that is something I hope to change this year. So I went in search of something that didn't seem to be overdone and found the delightful Dalecarlian horses of Sweden. I will be having my younger students paint them, but since they missed out on the fun I may have the older students create 3D sculptures. Here's my teacher sample painting and a link to the lesson plan if you'd like to try it but have no time to write your own plan.

In the lesson plan over at TpT, I included two fun pattern worksheets for the students where they have to match up and identify different types of patterns. So excited to see their bright creations filling the hallway this fall!

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Feeling Fibers

** Update **
Lesson plans now available here if interested, and I made step by step visuals for setting up the loom for the tree and the circular weaving. With arrows. Cause I'm fancy.

During the last week of school my grant for a visit artist was fully funded through Donors Choose. She will be creating a living wall using fibers as a collaborative piece with each student K-5. So, I've been feeling fibers lately as I plan out my scope and sequence for next year. I started making samples to decide which grade level I might work each project into.

I may use the kumihimo bracelet as a bridge or transition activity for my 3rd, 4th and 5th graders. I created a step-by-step handout that they can use to get started.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Thankful for my village

It takes a village....to develop a seriously good grading system for report cards. This year our district rolled out new report cards. We previously used a standards-based model of 1-4 with 3 being grade level and 4 being mastery of a year ahead. In art, students were assessed in two areas. We now have three areas to grade: art content, conduct and effort. The parents only see the letter labels so our amazing department put together a rubric to think through what each label means. I have been using sentences from the rubric on the report card comment section because they are so helpful. Since providing thoughtful comments can be tricky when you're working alone I wanted to share them out.

Friday, May 26, 2017


My first student batch of bobbleheads fresh from the oven. These are miniature (about 3" tall) made from sculpey. As a STEAM challenge, students had to weigh their material on a scale and were only allowed 2oz (equal to one brick) of polymer clay (We used Sculpey III). They could swap colors with friends or me to get up to that amount.