Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Another Cat Day K5

Gretchen's lesson
5 year olds

Another cat art lesson. See the previous few posts for details and other pieces of art on this cat theme.

The children embraced the subject, telling me a lot of stories about their own cats. They came up with a few ideas on how to keep the birds safe from cats. Cats indoors, leads, lots of food everywhere so they'll be too full to eat birds. When I suggested putting a bell on a cat's collar, they thought that would be so they could find their cat if it was lost. So we talked about how the birds would hear it too and would fly away.

i was impressed with their ability to use the fine brushes with the water colour paint so well.

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Cats K4

Gretchen's lesson
5 year olds

I have continued with my 'predator free neighbourhoods' theme. Several lessons that precede this one will offer you more details.

Detail of a cat drawing.

I read the children some cat stories. Several of them had cats at home.  We talked about how we could stop cats eating the native birds. The children understood the problem and had many examples of cat/bird conflicts.
I suggested bells on cats and they felt comfortable about that idea.

I used Laurel Burch's cat art as motivation for the cat drawings.
Some of the children latched onto her way of working while others used their own ideas.

We followed up with smaller cat drawings using pens and layers of coloured pencils.

Thursday, 16 February 2017

Cats K7

 Gretchen's lesson
5 - 6 year olds

Observational drawings with the aide of the magnifying glass.

The lesson took a similar format as the two previous lessons this week, focusing on cats as predators of our wildlife and how we can make a difference.
We used the beautifully simple cat drawings of Laurel Burch as a starting point.

The children added colour using concentrated dye, remembering to allow colours to dry before putting other colours close. All the cats have a little silver bell to warn the birds.

Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Cats with bells. R9

Gretchen's lesson
7-8 year olds

This lesson is a continuation of the 'Predator Free Neighbourhoods' focus.
The children discussed how cats could be controlled. They all understood that our wildlife is a target for our domestic cats. A little bell was a popular option.

I showed the children the art of Laurel Burch. I broke down steps to create a cat in her style. They loved the ease in creating cats. They practiced side on, front on and sitting cats.

They created families of cats and added exciting colour using oil pastels. To keep the art bright, they added concentrated dye using cotton buds.

The final step was to add metallic silver paint to the little bells around the cats necks.

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Giving the birds a chance. K6

 Gretchen's lesson.
5 year olds.
Cat with a bell on a fence at night.

 Observational drawing warm ups.
Dye over the wax crayon cats
Dye over a crumpled background.

I read the children a story about a cat and started a conversation about cats at night. The children talked about their own cats or grandparents cats. I tried to get them to work out how we can stop cats from catching our native birds. Their ideas included letting their cat live in a cage, locking the cat door and keeping them inside during the night. But someone decided cats might catch birds during the day too.

I introduced the idea of putting a bell around their necks. This would give the birds prior warning and a chance to fly away.

 Look closely and you will see the little bell the children made out of foil.


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