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Re: prompts

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From: Patricia Knott (pknott_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Wed Oct 22 2003 - 16:42:41 PDT


Sky writes
> Here's an inspiring (I think new) lesson. We're doing a unit on Japan this
> year. My third graders were inspired by the plasitic food displays in the
> windows of Japanese restaurants. These displays are so realistic that you
> can't believe the food isn't real. It takes them years of training to learn
> how to make this plastic food. I got some great images from Google of fake
> shrimp tempura, beef bowl and fried rice. There's a district in Japan devoted
> to this fake food.

Years ago I saved an article from Smithsonian (probably 20 years ago) on
this skill. It seems to be a particular Japanese skill. I was fascinated by
the production of perfect lettuce heads made from wax. If I remember,
layers of hot wax were dipped in cold water which caused the "wrinkle" then
perfectly formed into heads. (ain't it funny how I can remember this but not
what I did 20 minutes ago)

I have done lots of fun projects with food
When I taught middle school I did a ceramics project -
       it had to look like prepared food
       and it also had to be some kind of container
             some I remember a Big MAC where the top of the bun came
off to reveal the container, chocolate cake ( the top of the cake with
birthday candles was the lid) and one I still have ---- Blueberry pie
this 7th grader made a pan with a crust rolled every blueberry and forced
clay from a cake decorator to simulate whipped cream the blueberries were
all on a slab that became a lid for the pie container. I keep this piece in
my living room because it is so "pop" it really looks like blueberry pie
and it functions, too.

I occasionally pull out my "You Are What you Eat" lesson
sometimes it's an illustration sometimes a construction
last year I got a most incredible sculpture a huge scale weighing U.S.
consumption of red meat vs. vegetables and grains. The student did a lot of
research and the piece reflects her views about healthy eating--- the red
meat side is incredible

I encourage my kids to research research research
You never know where an idea comes from and I so force the sketchbook
/journal keeping to hold these ideas
there are so many ways to bring student choice to a theme idea
I hardly ever do a lesson anymore that is my "step -by-step" approach to a
technique.
I give a problem and my step by step is helping them through the problem
even if it means 25 different solutions to the problem

as Amanda said -- art thinking skills

anxious to hear more about where ideas come from
thanks
Patty

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