I'm doing scratchboard with my 2nd graders right now, too. We have had
many discussions about cave art. After viewing a video (just pieces) of
the wonderful paintings in Lascaux, we talked about why the animals were
so important to prehistoric man. Then I posed the question, "What
animal is important to you?" (I have fourth graders focusing on
endangered animals and they are using different methods for their
projects.) Most students chose their favorite animal. They researched
the library and the Internet for pictures. We also talked about
petroglyphs (carvings, engraved) as compared to paintings, and we
defined graphics as artwork conveying simple messages.
They first sketched the outline and contours of the animals, either
face/head or full body. Next, the children had to create a carbon out
of their sketch by rubbing sketcho on the back. Then, they had to place
their sketch over purchased scratchboard and trace their sketches to
transfer marks onto scratchboard. All of these steps were demonstrated
by me. Of course, I had to do a reminder demo each week for the kids
that are like me and have short term memory loss! I stressed breaking
the animal now into smaller parts or details. I again demonstrated how
to make fur, for example, making short strokes, some straight, some
curved, and not a back and forth scribble method like they all have a
tendency to want to do.
There were maybe four kids that were not here last week and I had run
out of scratchboard. So today, we made our own by coloring heavily with
crayon and coating with a black sketcho. I don't use tempera paint.
The results were so well received that now ALL of them want to make
their own! It's messy, cover your tables and have lots of handwipes
available. The kids started experimenting with different colors
underneath. It's like magic and much fun!
Their drawings are surprisingly detailed for 2nd graders and are coming
along very nicely. I'm not sure how I want to mount them yet. Maybe
you could give me an idea. Hope this helps.
> Problem: the color does not come through well after scratching. also,
> what kind of subject matter lends itself to this activity?