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Re: [teacherartexchange] Daily warm ups?

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Carokarn_at_TeacherArtExchange
Date: Sat Aug 12 2006 - 08:16:38 PDT


   I did something with middle school students that worked well. I had lots
of old 14" copy paper which I cut in half for practice drawing activities. I
made transparancies for the over head similar to the practice exercises in
Mona Brookes' books using just lines and shapes to start out. The students would
replicate these designs as a warm up exercise. This helped me see who had
problems with reversals (even in middle school), who could not recognize or draw
shapes and who had motor skills problems. It helped the kids learn to
recognize relative proportions and to develop control of the medium (which could
vary).
   I added patterns and eventally worked up to recognizable drawings such as
branches, fruit, parts of flowers, etc. I will never forget the joy in one
little boy's face when he drew something that looked like a "real picture". I
know the current views on copy work, but since artists have been trained by
doing copywork for at least 5,000 years (probably more) and the current attitude
has only been in place for about 70 years I choose to use it as one of my
tools. They have ample time to be creative in the regular lesson as this was
about a five minute activity during the time I checked attendance and got
materials out.
  Copying a drawing that is projected upside down is a good activity too.
The results are often surprising. Another possibility is projecting something
out of focus for practice with values and repeating the subject with increases
in focus for three or four lessons until the subject is clear. Kids who think
they "can't draw" often have great success with this because they don't know
what they are drawing untill they have done it two or three times.

Carol
Clio, SC

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