“What We Do All Day” – Artzone Teachers Plan A Term (28/09/2015)

Our classes are busy, very busy! As such, we need to make sure that we put in the planning and research long before we ever set foot in the classroom. The planning, research and preparation involved in running each and every class your child attends tends to ensure the best possible atmosphere for creativity and learning.

Students from St. Pius's National School with their artwork

Planning the Term

Before a new term starts, the art team sits down to plan out their themes. Gillian (Artzone’s Art Director with over 15+ years of experience) works with our diverse array of teachers and comes up with a theme for each of our three age groups – one that will appeal to them creatively and is appropriate to their ability. Not an easy job but they’re definitely up to the task! For our Autumn 2015 term, the team decided on three themes that link together quite closely:

  1. Pond Life – for our junior group
  2. A Forest Walk – for our middle group
  3. Irish Woodlands – for our senior group

Researching the Term

Before we can start creating, our teachers do loads of research – as inspiration from established artists is key to the students’ learning. This term, the kids LOVED hearing about Helen Musselwhite, a British artist whose spooky and beautiful paper creations inspired the older groups.

Helen Musslewhite KLM 2012 Cover

Louise D’s Clay Owls for the senior group’s "Irish Woodlands" theme (2015)

We don’t just look to established artists for inspiration. Jessie, one of our teachers, found some amazing sculptures from an online artist on DeviantArt (an online community of young artists) and used her artwork as a support study for the clay owls we were making midway through the term.

Artwork for the Term

Frog Painting

Frog Painting

This painting is perfect for the little ones beginning classes for the very first time. They’re learning all about colour and painting.

Duck Collage

Next up, they’re learning all about different shapes, and developing their fine motor skills through cutting and assembling the different parts of the collage.

Younger Frog Pond Bowl

Clay Frog and Pond

Our students learn about form and how to shape and mould clay – potentially messy but very fun work! Then they need to paint it – it’s a bit different to painting on paper.

Spooky Frankenstein Trick or Treat Bag

Spooky Frankenstein Trick or Treat Bag

Breaking from the theme a little bit because we love Halloween – it’s our favourite holiday. Building on what we learned during the Duck Collage, we’re helping the kids make their very own spooky Frankenstein bag to collect all their Halloween treats!

Junior Group Crayon and Ink

Crayon and Ink Fish

To round off the term, we’re on to the fish in the pond.

This time we are using crayons to create our picture, working in swirling patterns to create the texture and effect of water. An ink wash is painted over the picture to enhance this effect.

Wrap up

All that is done before we even step foot in a classroom! And being honest, any respectable art teacher absolutely HAS to do this kind of preparation for any art class they do.

It’s so important to us that our kids love coming to Artzone, that they learn new skills and that they go home with some amazing artwork they’ve created to show off to their family. Doing this level of preparation allows our teachers to make sure that this happens every time.

Leave a Reply