“There’s rainbow rainbows… everywhere!”

After spending three weeks pushing into the art center in PK classrooms, this week children FINALLY began coming to the Studio for art groups!  Friends were busy exploring the space, learning about new art materials and collaborating with friends.

Each art group began with walking around the Studio and noticing things that excited them or that they were curious about.  Children that were in PK last year enjoyed noting similarities and differences between the Studio, as many areas are new!

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Elijah: I remember the easel was turned this other way and you had a rectangle table, not a circle table last year!

Betsegaw: I hear a teacher?  I want to see the friends.

Irvina: This room is so amazing.  It’s like a rainbow.  There are so many decorations in here!

Cesar: Why you don’t got no bathroom in here?

Declan: I see centers in here, like different art centers.

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Kendul: Your bell sounds like a musical instrument.

Dayana: I hear a baby crying.

Julian: I see the park!

Charlotte: Your room has windows.  A rainbow window.  And that’s aftercare over there.

Daniela: Everyone belongs in here!

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Naila: I’m looking around the room so I know what I want to paint.  I love the rainbow on that window!

Marcus: I hear the “popcorn on the train” song.

Drew: I remember making those bug stamps last year!

Luca: The easel turned to the side.  I notice so many new friends, but not the bell… the bell was here last year.

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Asa: There’s rainbow rainbows… everywhere!

Alden: I know, we made that a couple years ago about insects.

Julian: There’s a hole in the wall so we can hear them singing the fishy song!

Uhura: I hear friends behind that wall.  I think they’re doing a dance party!

Vanessa: I saw diamonds!  I love diamonds.

Jax: How do you have play dough in here?

Nora: Where do the smocks live?

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Next, children were introduced to sketchbooks.  We will be using them throughout the year to collect art work and individual stories.  Children will have opportunities to share artwork from their sketchbooks with others as we build a collaborative community.  Friends used liquid watercolors to begin designing and differentiating the covers of their sketchbooks.

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Aurora: How does the paint dry so fast?

Frances: I see paint.  Pink paint, hooray!

Ahmari: It looks like blood but it’s really paint.

Avery: I’m covering all the white.  It looks beautiful!  Look what’s happening… the blue is going away because I’m changing the color.

Kaylee: I’m painting so much.  I’m working so hard!

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Theo: Before you paint, you have to tap off some of the paint from the brush.

Kourtney: The jars are made out of glass.  If you drop it, it will break and it will make a mess.

Brandon: The outside of the sketchbook (spine) looks like a slinky.  It moves!

Elizabeth: Remember when I mixed garbage green last year?  I’m trying that again.

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Nazeer: I can teach you how to put on the smocks!  Just go and put your head through here.

Katherine: I’m being so kind with this… I’m sharing the paint.

Adele: I’m so an artist.

Christian: We can share the paint in here, but we can’t share our germs.

Daniela: Be gentle gentle with the glass.

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As children finished painting, they began learning about other centers in the Studio.  This week, dry erase markers were available at the easel and Slick Stix were available at the back table.  Friends are VERY excited for the sensory table to open up next week!

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Frances: These feel good but they feel a little sticky.

Ahmari: Pop the top back on it.

Kaleb: The erasers are super soft.

Kendul: These look like lipstick.

Theo: I like the Slick Stix.  They look kind of nice and sticky like glue sticks.

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“I’ll go sad when they go to Kindergarten and I’m gonna cry so loud!”

How is it already June?  This year really flew by!  One of my favorite parts of the year is when I split PK3’s and PK4’s so they can create gifts for their classmates who are either going to Kindergarten or staying in PK for another year.

This year, the PK3’s created their own colors of paint to send to Kindergarten.  The idea is that when children open their easel the first week of school, they will have special colors waiting for them and reminding them of their friends in PK.  We read My Many Colored Days by Dr.Seuss and brainstormed what types of colors friends might want to incorporate into future paintings.

Trebor: Let’s make them pink.  They like it and they be happy.

Eli: Let’s mix the paint and make it like chocolate milk.

Jax: Special red orange.  Really special.  Best day ever.

Cameron: Elijah likes green, let’s make him that.  And Sophie likes purple!

We narrowed it down to two colors per group to create and got to work on our color experiments!  Friends took turns adding colors to jars and mixing until they were happy with the color.  Finally, they assigned each color a name.

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Autumn: I’m just gonna cry about them.

Jax: I’ll go sad when they go to Kindergarten and I’m gonna cry so loud!

Dafnee: I won’t tell them what we  made for the surprise.  I’ll just say we make a flower!

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Fatima: We can call it lettuce… we grew that.

Amen: It’s turning to dark blue.  It’s turned to dark pink.

Dafnee: It’s getting lighter.  It’s mixing colors.

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Dafnee: This pink is pink lemonade.  It takes like sweet lemonade and it’s my favorite color.

Belen: C’mon purple, you can do it.

Waju: The stick is gonna turn purple.  Let’s write the names, like broccoli, on the stick so they know!

Kai: I put just the right amount of white.

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Below are some shots of the finished jars of paints and the sticks that show what children chose to name each color.  Along with the paint , we will include a sweet letter that friends wrote.

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Dear Friends,

We will miss you when you go to Kindergarten.  Be nice.  You are our best friends but you have to go and make something new.  We’ll miss your singing, I like playing with you and thanks for playing with me.  Don’t worry, when you go to Kindergarten, you will see all our friends.  We could visit you and we could play out back.  Will there be babies in our class?  We’re gonna be in charge of the little teeny tiny kids.  We will be kind to the new friends, and we can help take kids to another classroom so they can find their teachers.  I’ll be a leader, leading them, like you showed  us.  I’ll share with them and show them how to freeze.

We hope you like the paint.  Can you paint one thing for us so we can see the colors we made?  We can’t wait to see what you paint.  

Love, your PK3 friends

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“It’s amazing to use all the colors you want to make the color you want to make the most!”

Art groups are in full swing in the PK Studio, and we’re continuing to work with and learn about new materials every week.  This past week, friends used liquid watercolors to make paintings.  It was exciting to paint with watercolors after learning about tempera paint, because it allowed them to explore their similarities and differences. Friends enjoyed watching the paint settle into the paper, as well as laying colors to create one of a kind paintings!

Before we could begin painting, friends practiced putting on smocks.

Siah: Good smocks!

William: Darby, let me help you with your smock.  It goes like this… long part in the front, short part in the back.

Reese: We wear smocks so we don’t get our clothes messy.

In the PK Studio, we keep liquid watercolors in glass jars.  Before we began painting, friends shared what they already knew about glass, and how to handle working with the fragile material.  As you can see, children really covered all of the bases in regards to using glass jars in the Studio.

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Adrian: Don’t be rough with the jars or they will break.  Jars are like a small bottle.

Mae: If you drop the glass it’ll break all over the floor and it could hit your foot and your foot could get bloody and you will cry and the paint will be gone.

Ra’Maya: Glasses have glass in them, too!

Sophie: If you put the jar hard on the table, it could scare friends and also break.

Selwyn: If we pick the jar up and throw it in the air, it would make a mess and it would break.

Zoe: If you drop the glass it could break and you could step on it and your foot would bleed and you might not walk and your foot could fall off, so that’s why you have to be careful with glass.

Friends also learned that if we want to mix colors, we mix colors on our paper and not in the jars.

Sarah: Don’t put the pink brush in the blue jar because it’ll mix it all and no one can use the blue anymore because it’ll change to purple.

Luke: You can’t trick us… we know the green brush goes in the green jar!

Nayeli: I always don’t put the pink brush in the blue.

Jax: Do I put the orange in the yellow?  Nooooo!  Do I put the orange in the blue? Nooooo!  Do I put the orange in the orange? Yes!

Finally… friends could get to work on their masterpieces!

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Naomi: If someone comes in, we could tell them they can come paint with us!

Marquis: The pink paint disappears when I put it on the green.

Zavier: This yellow paint is sparkly and golden.

Christian: Mister Skinny Legs, look, I’m painting Mikey Angelo.  And Mister Skinny Legs is like “OMG, I didn’t know Christian could paint the Ninja Turtles!”

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Carlos: It’s amazing to use all the colors you want to make the color you want to make the most!

Iris: How do watercolors dry so quickly?  Maybe if you blow on the painting, it’ll dry up.

Miguel: This yellow looks sparkly like pirates gold.

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Nneka: That color looks like emerald.

Madison: Mine is beautiful because I know how to paint really well like an artist.

Elijah: This looks like fern green, which is like our art group!  It’s a light green, it’s fern green.  Can I call you Ms.Fern?

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Florentina: Watercolors get sucked up into the paper faster than other paints.  Look at the back of my paper… the paint sucked all the way through to the back!

Isabella: Paintbrushes love the watercolors.  They look like they are swimming in an ocean of pink paint!

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Braeden illustrates “Snoopy and the Pilot!”

Friends have really enjoyed using liquid watercolors with oil pastels and colored tape this week!  It has given me many ideas for upcoming projects and I am so excited to get some of them underway.  Below is a conversation between myself and Braeden about his future career goals and his painting titled “Snoopy and the Pilot!”

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Braeden: Now I need another color to draw in the little triangle.  It’s part of the airplane wing.  Look Ms.Cushner, you just swipe the brush so we don’t waste the paint.  You’re the best artist in the whole world.  You know everything in the whole world.

Ms.Cushner: Wow, Braeden… thank you!  I think you’re a fabulous artist too, and you always take such good care of our materials.

Braeden: It’s because I went to the store, the art store, with my family.  I actually think I’m gonna be the best artist when I grow up.  I got some paints and papers from the art store with my dad so I can practice.

Ms.Cushner: Do you want to be an art teacher or an artist?

Braeden: Not a teacher, just an artist.  I’m practicing to be one now!  See, this is still an airplane… a Snoopy airplane!  Snoopy the Pilot… it’s kind of funny!