“There’s love in your heart.  And your heart is under your skin so you don’t need to draw it.”

Last week, friends added finishing touches to their self portraits!  Children used additional drawing materials to draw on top of the liquid watercolors once they had dried.  Friends studied their faces in mirrors and compared them to their self portraits.  Many children realized that they forgot important features and added them to make the portraits even more realistic!

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Asa: I forgot to paint all my face!  I’ll color the rest in.

Anival: Why do I look like a monkey alien?  Oh well.  But I did make my beautiful legs.

Leah: Mouth? I forgot my mouth!

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Amie: I added some pink around my mouth.  The color red is on my shirt so I’m making it red.  And I made two sleeves.  I made Jessica with me.  She’s my sleeping friend that I brought to school!

Adrian: I forgot to do my legs, and my underwear, and my pants, and my shoes.

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Adele: My hair is light brown with golden.  And I need to add light pink to my mouth.

Ava: I love my face.  See?  This is my face!

Nanahi: I add a little bit of skin.

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Hope: First I did my hair blue, but I actually need to make it dark.

Ahmari: Brains are under our skin.  Let me make my brain.

Nora: I drew my pink pants and I changed my pants to white because I’m wearing white pants today.

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Connor: There’s love in your heart.  And your heart is under your skin so you don’t need to draw it.

Dayana: I’m drawing a rainbow dropping on me.  It feels like wet rain falling on my head.

Frances: I can make “WW” for my Wonder Woman shirt.

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Kaylee: I’m making my dress red and sparkly.

Bella: I forgot to add my hands!

Theo: I see a small part of red in my eyes.  And white on both sides around the blue.  Now… my buttons.  They are brown and grey.  My shoes… wait, where are my shoes?  I forgot them but they are grey and green.  I didn’t draw my feet because they’re inside my shoes.

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Africa Grace: I need to use white to make my leggings.

Emely: I’m making me in my own color!

Maya: I forgot to leave my teeth white.  And I only drew my bottom teeth!

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Kyrie: I have to make my eyes darker brown.  And I need to add white to them!

Uhura: I need more peach on my cheeks.

Jax: I need my eyes to be brown.  And my boogers.

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“Skin is so you don’t have your skeleton out!”

Last week, friends started working on their self portraits in the Studio!  We began by reading The Skin You Live In by Michael Tyler.  This book has rich text and illustrations, so we broke it up into three parts to use throughout our self portrait work.

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Next, we began examining our faces in mirrors.  Friends noticed shapes, colors and textures, while also sharing what they knew about skin and why we have it.

“Why do we have skin?”

Kyrie: You need skin so you can play.  And so you can run really fast.

Abbie: It keeps your inside warm.

Africa Grace: Skin is so you don’t have your skeleton out.

Jax: If you take your skin off, you’ll see your bones.

Theo: It helps keep the bones inside the body.

Kaylee: And the blood inside.

Sallie Chappell: When we grow into a baby, we grow skin.

Jair: Skin helps you grow bigger and bigger when you eat your vegetables.

Amie: If you don’t have skin, you’ll die.

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Betsegaw: Self portraits are you draw if you’re a boy or a girl.

Abbie: You make your eye color.

Theo: I need to make my Nationals jersey.  And my missing teeth.  And little boogers in my nose.

Aria: Don’t forget to make your eyelids.

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Jacob: My legs are lines.  And my feet look like little ovals.  My fingers look like five lines.

Frances: How come I’m always in my skin?

Kaitlyn: I put my unicorn horn.

Nora: I need to add my birth mark.

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Adele: It means… um… self means us, so, a picture of us!

Ellie: How do I make Ellie?

Eva:  I added a freckle to my foot.  And a bandaid.

Jayden: That’s me.  That’s myself!

Hope: I have skin on my face.  And my cheeks.

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Below are self portraits in process!  Next week, friends will mix colors with liquid watercolors as they start adding additional details to their portraits.

“I’m coffee colored and I have a nice smile!”

It’s one of my favorite times of year in the Pre-K Studio… self portrait week!  Friends in Pre-K work on a self portrait for their portfolio at the beginning and the end of each school year.  It’s great to see how much their observations and skills change over the course of the year, and for children that are in Pre-K for two years, over the span of both years.  We began by reading The Colors of Us by Karen Katz and talked a little about different shades of skin, eyes, hair, etc.

Next, I showed some different techniques for selecting colors that closely matched the colors that were unique to each of them.  Children selected colors that they thought would work after observing themselves in the mirror, and held them up next to their hands, hair, etc. to see which color would be the best.

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Amal: I look beautiful!

Nazeer: My skin is a toast color.

Waju: I’m making my head an oval.  My skin is pancake color and my eyes are a little bit blue.  I look nice!  I’m drawing myself holding the pencil.  Wait, why do I kind of look like a huge potato?

Anders: Don’t forget your belly button.

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Autumn: Oh my!  I’m looking at myself.  Hi Autumn!  I see that I’m so hairy.  I have more than one hair on my head.

Isabella: I’m the color of spice.

Isaac: I’m coffee colored and I have a nice smile!

Konone: My eyes are dark brown like midnight brown.

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Phoenix: I’m chocolate brown and Autumn is chocolate brown too!

Mateo: I even want to draw my stinky feet.

Leonel: When you look in the mirror there’s another you.  My head looks so big because I have a big brain.

Gionni: My skin is brown like a brown  bear.

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Sophia: I’m sand colored.

Eden: I’m making mine silly and drawing my tongue!

Jax: I’m just like you… I have eyelashes too!

Aurora: I see my two ponytails.

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Here are some of the finished self portraits from our week!

 

Observing Darian’s Self Portraits

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At CCPCS, Pre-K classrooms are mixed age  (3-5 years old).  Children remain in the same classroom for two years before moving up to Kindergarten.  It has been exciting to see our Pre-K 3’s from last year transition into a leadership role as a Pre-K 4 this school year.  One part that has been particularly interesting for me to see is the progress they have made with their self portraits.

Self portraits are a key part of Pre-K portfolios.  Children add to portfolios throughout the year and share them with their families at their final conference of the school year.  During the first few weeks of school, children observe their reflections in a mirror and draw what they see.  It’s exciting to compare their portraits at the end of the year with those from the beginning, and to revisit work from the previous year.

Above are Darian’s self portraits, beginning with his work from Fall 2012, followed by Spring 2013 and finally, his most recent self portrait from Fall 2013!  He was just as proud of his growth as I was.