Pumpkin Patrol - Art Projects! October 23 2009
I don't consider myself an artistic person, nor am I highly skilled in any visually artistic mediums. For these reasons, I appreciate and value artistic ability and lessons and work them in to any unit of study.
The Pumpkin Patrol unit is no exception - in fact, the subject matter lends itself to artistic expression! The following projects are presented from easiest to most sophisticated, and your use of them depends on the age level of your kids and your own comfort level.
You could use full-size pumpkins for this...but I wouldn't recommend it. Get a few mini-pumpkins per group, cutting them vertically down the middle. Your students can then use them with paint to make pumpkin prints! Use watercolor paper and a wash as a background for your pumpkin prints.
Have a few different colors of construction paper to use for backgrounds. Pass out orange construction paper and have your students tear the paper into small pieces, then glue those small pieces into one or several mosaic pumpkins on their choice of background paper. Provide brown or green for mosaic stems, and different shades of orange paper so students can play with monochromatic color.
You have pumpkins to decorate, but it's not realistic to carve them in the classroom. Why not decoupage instead? Provide a variety of pumpkin or Halloween themed paper that students can cut. Then have students use a decoupage medium (such as Mod Podge) to coat the back of the paper design with a spongebrush. Place the design on side of the pumpkin, making sure it's secure on the grooves. Cover the outside of the paper decoration with the decoupage medium - it will be white but will dry clear. While still wet, students can apply decoratives like sequins or glitter as well.
What if you don't have pumpkins? Have your students bring in glass jars of varying sizes, and decorate those instead!
Pumpkin Still Life
On a table or other high, flat surface in the front of your classroom, place a grouping of gourds, pumpkins or a mixture of the two. Have students sketch the subjects in pencil on watercolor paper.
Students can use watercolors to paint their subjects true-to-life, or limit them to one or two complementary colors that they can mix with black to shade or white to tint. The goal with the second option is to play with the different tints and shades of color as they observe and then paint the subjects.
After you provide these artistic opportunites for your kids, display their works of art for all to enjoy!
If you're interested in more craft projects for this time of year, check out Carol's post on Halloween Classroom Craft Projects!