6th: Adinkra Cloth Designs

6th grade has been learning even more about cultures and what influences them in their development. Tradition is one such influence on the development of culture. Students have been exploring many different kinds of traditions that take place in different cultures around the world. For this project, students learned about the artisans of the Adinkra cloths in Ghana, which are made from the designs of hand-carved stamps.

Starting from sketches, students had to design 4, 3″ x 3″stamps. The goal of the students was to create abstract stamps that utilized the positive and negative space of their whole square. The designs were then used to create their stamps from foam paper.

Each of these square stamps was used to create a larger design, inspired by the Adinkra cloths.

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6A: Chalk Installation

To complete our unit on community, students collaborated to create an art installation.

Students learned about pixels, optical color mixing, and artmaking through grids. Inspired by artists such as Chuck Close, students had to choose an image representative of the community that would be viewing it. Then, students were led through the process of grid creation.

It is through this grid and collaboration that we were able to perform a temporary art installation for the school community from chalk.

How amazing it was to see the hard work of each student! Next to the piece, it is nearly impossible to see what the image contains. From above, however, we were able to cheer and high-five over our beautiful accomplishment!

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6th: Community Printmaking

6th graders have been challenged to create self portraits in various formats throughout the semester. Most recently, students learned about the processes of printmaking through the creation of a styrofoam printing plate.

While we have been talking about symbolism in art for the entire semester, we discussed how the items we own say something about who we are as a person. Students were asked to think critically while shown a variety of pictures of bedrooms: based on what is in the bedrooms, what can we infer about the person who inhabits it?

With these considerations in mind, students were to choose an object from their own bedrooms to represent some aspect of their personality. This object was then reduced to a simple line sketch and translated into the printing plate.

Each student had to generate a series of 4 differently colored prints from this plate.

Finally, students had to collaborate in the creation of one large print that incorporated all of their individual objects. From the portraits of each student, we were able to generate a portrait of their entire classroom community.

 

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6th: Sgraffito Self Portraits

As the capstone to their Personal Identity unit, students have been working on contour self portraits. Students learned about proportions in order to aid them in drawing their own face.

Each student was able to choose a photograph of themselves from their personal device then had to draw from observation. Each finished drawing was outlined in Sharpie, then filled completely with a thick coat of oil pastel.

Next week, students will finish these projects by adding layers of Sgraffito to the surface of their drawings to add texture and visual interest. (This will be done through a layer of black paint on top, which is then scratched in to.)

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6th: Paper Self Portraits

What are self-portraits and why do artists create them?

6th graders are continuing to explore this question and ideas of self through the creation of symbolic self-portraits. Students must consider how symbols, shapes, and colors can give their artworks meaning and what it is they would like to say about themselves.

From preliminary sketches through the construction of their low-relief paper sculptures, students are encouraged to see the impact each creative decision has on their final works.

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