“I need to take a little break… mixing colors is making me tired!”

Last week, friends began learning about colors and color mixing as we kicked off our long-term color study!  We started by reading Monsters Love Colors, a very silly book that introduces colors and color mixing to young children really well.

Daniel: Red monster!  Blue monster!  Yummy colors!

Elizabeth: I can’t wait to mix so many colors for the monsters.

Felipe: Will red, yellow and blue make a rainbow?  The monsters will be so happy!  We made new colors, too.

Next, I introduced some new materials, such as a palette.  Children learned that palettes are a tool that artists use for mixing colors.  They were very excited to hold it in one hand and their paintbrush in the other.  For the first week, each palette was prepared with the primary colors (red, yellow, blue) for children to mix new colors with.

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Leonel: We’re going to paint with Colombia colors… red, yellow and blue.

Sebrina: A palette holds the paint.  It’s important.

Finally, it was time to paint.  Children began mixing colors that they thought the monsters from the story would love!

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Autumn: Look at how I made it…  I mixed red and blue and it’s purple!

Phoenix: That color looks like the color of Ethiopian food.  My mom likes that food!

Luca: Red is the color for love.

Dafnee: Daniel was right!  Red and blue makes purple!

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Brandon: I’ll mix red and blue and let’s see what happens!

Isabella: How did you make that kind of purple, Elliott?  Does it have more blue or more red?

Cameron: I mixed all the colors… let’s see what happens!  How come when I did all the colors it made brown, not rainbow?

Nydelyn: I made red, like a strawberry red, because I like them.

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Trebor: I want to make rainbow.  Wow, I did it actually!  It’s because I’m an artist.

Cora: I can’t believe red, yellow and blue can make all of these colors!

Frances: I made turquoise with a lot of blue and a little yellow.  Now look, when I put a lot of yellow and a little blue it makes light green, like slimy green.

Bella: I made the color of ducks!

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Elizabeth: When you mix colors, the paint is loud.  When you paint, the brush is quiet because it’s busy.

Waju: I made dark green!  Now I have two types of green.  This one is darker because it has more blue in it.

Eli: I made green because I thinked about it and remembered that blue and yellow would do that.

Kwame: I mixed all the colors and it made brown.

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Siah: I made tropical blue, how did I do that?

Katherine: Blue and yellow I told you made green.

Anders: I was right… red and yellow did make orange.

Joelle: A little bit of yellow and a little bit of blue makes a little bit of green.

Sammy: I need to take a little break… mixing colors is making me tired!

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“Yellow, yellow, who do you see? I see pink looking at me!”

Welcome back to the school, friends!  After a summer filled with travel, art-making and lots of time to relax, it feels great to be back in the PK Studio and kicking off year 5!  I’m so excited to continue to work with PK4’s and to begin working with the new PK3’s this year.

During the first 3 weeks of school, I joined children in their classrooms and introduced materials at their art centers.  We worked with crayons, oil pastels and finally… tempera paint.  I also introduced Studio Sketchbooks for the first time, which will help compile all of their art work from the beginning of the year.  They will take their sketchbooks home at the first conference day!  Next week, children will begin coming to the Studio for art groups… and I’m beyond excited 🙂  Below is a snapshot of the beginning of the year work in their sketchbooks… enjoy!

Friends have used oil pastels, crayons and markers to begin illustrating stories and sharing their interests with myself and their peers.  Children enjoyed smudging and rolling the oil pastels, especially because they can be a little bit messy 🙂

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Kimi: This says K-I-M-I.  It’s my book!

Samantha: This is not Josie’s?  This is mine?  This is my notebook?  It’s not Josie’s, it’s mine?  My sketchbook?

Dafnee: Like your sketchbook?  Now I have one!

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Brandon: I don’t like the paper on the crayons.  I got to see all the colors.  I need to put the paper in the trash.  Now everyone can see the colors!

Isabella: When you drag pastels on the side it looks like a rainbow.  I love being here at the art table.  It’s so relaxing.

Amal: When you blow on it, the oil pastel doesn’t go away.

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Jax: Pastels make your hands dirty like a monster.  I want to keep drawing.

Torin: My fingers got messy too.  Just like Drew!

Elliott: Hear that scratching sound?  That’s called rubbing.

Aurora: It feels good.  They roll.  I can roll it fast.

Frances: I miss crayons, but these pastels are funny.

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Eva: Julia’s hands turned green like an ogre.

Belen: Messy, messy, silly messy.  I love doing messy.

Siah: What should you call this color?  I’ll call it rainbow water!

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Throughout the week, we have been using different sized brushes to paint with tempera.  Children also practiced putting on smocks to protect their clothes.  Friends mixed colors in their sketchbooks and are really excited to have paint open at their easels soon!

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Kaleb: The smock is covered in red paint because I have red paint on my hand.

Gionni: Did you know blue and yellow makes green.

Jax: Yellow, yellow, who do you see?  I see pink looking at me!  Pink, pink, who do you see?  I see red looking at me!

Luca: The purple paint covers the brush like magic.

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Isaac: What do you think of my painting?  It’s footprints!

Amen: When this fat brush goes in the yellow, it turns to brown.  I want to show all of my family.

Torin: Blue and yellow made a green person.  Guys look, it’s so mixed up.

Nazeer: I spin the red in yellow.  It’s orange!

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“The carrot looks like my brother with a fade on his head!”

Currently sitting in jury duty, and it seems like the perfect opportunity to blog about another canvas bag design process as we gear up for Friday’s Market!

There was so much enthusiasm around printmaking from the Sunflower and Fern groups after learning the processes during our figure drawing study that it seemed like a no brainer to incorporate these skills into our Expedition!  Friends began by observing details of fruits and vegetables under a magnifying screen or with magnifying glasses.  As friends observed the produce, they sketched what they saw onto pieces of styrofoam, creating their own stamps!

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Zoe: Whoa, these strawberries are huge!  Look at all the seeds.

Luke: Look at those big things.  The magnifying screen makes the beet look ginormous!

Briana: It makes them look so big!

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Elijah: The parsnip looks like the carrots cousin.  One is taller but they smell the same.

Mae: The strawberry is a “V” shape.  Let me check if there’s anything I missed.  I’m looking closely at the leaves.

Nayeli: Do beets have dots or just lines?

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William: People are going to flip out… the drawings are so good!

Elijah: The carrot looks like my brother with a fade on his head!

Mae: The pepper has little lumps on it and some little dots.  My stamp looks like a pepper party.

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After two weeks of creating styrofoam stamps, it was finally time to print on our canvas bags!  Each child chose which of their stamps they wanted to use, the color of fabric ink that accompanied them and the layout of the bag.  Friends are so excited to shop with their bags at our Market, as well as outside of school with their families!

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Trebor: My tomato is on my bag!

Miguel: You have to push hard so it goes on and is bright.

Zeina: I want to make mine a pattern.

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Sarah: This is my bag.  I can buy the focus spray and the seed balls and put it in my bag.  It’s gonna be mine and I’m gonna keep it forever and ever.  My own bag!

Reese: This is going to be my perfect bag.

Marquis: The carrots look cool on here.

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Ryan: My bag… oh yeah!

Carlos: I’m making my strawberry green so it’s not ready to eat yet.

Mae: This stamped the best because I pushed down hard and it made the brightest red.  It worked!

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Nneka: It feels like I’m ironing.

Carlos: I can already see the red pushing out when I roll on my stamp.

Zavier: We’re doing like teamwork to make the bags!

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Rayyan: The fabric ink makes a scratchy sound when you roll in it.

Ayub: Ink looks like toothpaste.

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Here is a small sampling of bag designs… Enjoy! See you at the Market from 2-3:30 on Friday!

“It feels like a squid. It’s fabuloso!”

Sunflower and Fern groups have been working on representing and depicting the figure in many different ways with a variety of materials.  Three weeks ago, children were introduced to Gelli plates, which are plates made out of durable gelatin that can be used over and over for mono printing.  I absolutely love to work with this material, both in the Studio and at home.  We began by passing Gelli plates around and friends described what they looked like, felt like, and even smelled like.

Andres: It feels like a squid.  It’s fabuloso!

Trebor: It looks like jello.

Zavier: I think it’s made out of old paper.

Madison: Like, strawberry jelly?

Kwame: It’s so sticky.

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Miguel: It’s floppy and I can drop it so easily.

Waju: It’s made out of water and ice and it mixes together to make that.

Nneka: When I rub it, I see the lines I made.

Ra’Maya: It smells like crayons.

William: Squishy and stretchy.

Adrian: It’s gooey.

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Elijah: The name is kind of funny.  Smells like goo.  Really, really stretchy.

Douglas: They look so shaky.

Selwyn: It looks like a piece of cheese for the Krabby patty.

Sophie: It wiggles!

Next, I walked friends through the steps of how to use a Gelli plate.  We began by putting a small amount of paint directly on the plate.  I suggested using the squirt bottles to put one spot of paint in each corner, which seemed like the perfect amount.  Then, we used a brayer to roll out the paint.  Friends said the brayer reminded them of what you use to paint a house, or a wheel on a big truck.  Once the paint was in a smooth layer, we used finger stamps and scrapers to create images in the paint.  Once they were happy with the composition, they set a piece of paper down, rubbed it with their hands and VOILA— their image transferred to their paper!

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Zeina: I know, the paint will go from the Gelli plate to the paper!  This is going to be super fun.

Adrian: This is so amazing and fun.

Destynee: It’s so pretty, isn’t it?  It makes other shapes.

Ayub: This is my favorite!

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Selwyn: My Gelli plate is clean again.  I love this.

Elliott: Guys, look what I made.  It looks pretty great!

William: I can’t wait to see mine.  Wow, it looks like an underwater jail!

Mae: Oh yeah, go gelatin!

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Zoe: You have to make big decisions before you put the paper down on the Gelli plate.

Zavier: I used the scraper to make a “Z,”  isn’t it gorgeous?  It’s a painting of rain.

Carlos: It’s so quick.

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Elijah: I’m an artist making my hands dirty.  Wow, this turned out really good!

Stay tuned for a post on how we combined representing the figure and Gelli printing!

“There are going to be so many people looking at our art work at the Showcase that we need security guards!”

After weeks and weeks of experimentation with color mixing, we started working on our final color study product!  We began by looking at work that shows individual colors side by side an image that uses the colors to make a cohesive piece of work.

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Siena: The colors on the side show what colors are in the painting.

Maia: The colors on the side match.

Next, friends closed their eyes and imagined what it would be like if they only had a few colors in the world to paint with.  Children thought about places they had been that evoked vivid memories, animals and food that they loved, and objects they have seen at school or at home.

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Amy: I want to make pink princess, dark purple princess and green princess.

Nayeli: I’m going to close my eyes and I see the pool.  I want to make pool blue.

Fatima: How do I make the color of a man sitting on the moon?

Next, friends began creating their unique colors in small plastic cups.  When they made a color that was just right, they painted a small rectangle with their paint.  Children named each color as they were working.  Friends were able to choose how many colors they wanted to make and throughout Pre-K, the numbers ranged from 2-6 unique colors per child.

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Waju: This is a perfect color.  Just a little more purple and it’ll be perfect perfect.

Adrian: It’s just the right color that I needed.

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Dai’Jah: I thought about when I went to the park with my mommy and there was a purple slide.  I’m trying to make a purple the same as the slide.

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The following week, friends were excited to revisit their paint and began to brainstorm how they would like to incorporate every color into a painting.

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Elliott: You have to be creative with the painting.  If you don’t have the right color, you have to make it different with your imagination.  It’s beautiful.

Zavier: You help me kind of like you’re my manager.

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Jariel: I’m making a people eating a shark.

Mae: The animals are sitting together on a tree and they’re having some fun.  Then they are going for a walk.

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Zavier: There are going to be so many people looking at our art work at the Showcase that we need security guards.  And tickets for the parents so that they can come.

We can’t wait to share our color study art work at the Pre-K Showcase on December 16!  Please stop by the Pre-K Studio between 11:30-12:30 on the 16th.

“It’s so exhausting to name colors… I need a snack, now!”

Last week, we began art groups by reading Green by Laura Vaccaro Seeger and talking about how there can be many different shades of a color.  In the book, we discovered that there can be glow green, pea green, forrest green and fern green.  Even though they were all technically green, they all appeared very different and reminded us of different things!

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Next, we played a game in which we picked colored cards and tried to name as many objects that reminded us of the selected color.  We made a long list that will be helpful for children to refer to when naming the colors for their final product.

Red: Stop sign red, barn red, tomato red, ketchup red, strawberry red.

Orange: Pumpkin orange, bright orange, Nemo orange, peach orange.

Yellow: Fall leaf yellow, sunny yellow, sunflower yellow, omelette yellow.

Pink: Berry pink, cotton candy pink, bubblegum pink, hair bow pink.

Green: Avocado green, alien green, caterpillar green, grass green.

Blue: Sky blue, smock blue, blue jay blue, Superman blue, blueberry blue.

Purple: Plum purple, eggplant purple, pepper purple, yogurt purple.

After our heads were swimming with images of rich and vibrant colors, friends began mixing colors on their palette with squirt bottles! As children were working, I walked around and helped friends name the colors that they created.  Friends found the squirt bottles hilarious because “they were like ketchup bottles and sometimes made funny noises.”

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Naomi: I’ll call this one chocolate.  And this one is slippery green.

Greyson: This is snail green.

Kai: Let’s mix it and see what happens!

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Claire: This color is like hot pepper red.

Luke: It’s so hard to mix my favorite color but it’s still fun.  It’s just a lot of work.

Jax: Dark like night time.  Whoa… dark like Batman.  Nice!

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William: It’s so exhausting to name colors… I need a snack, now!

Mae: This color is called banana, this color is banana peel and this color is dried banana.

Miguel: You know when you get yogurt from Trader Joe’s and you pour the blueberries into the vanilla yogurt and you swirl it around?  Yeah… this color looks just like that!

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“I’m going to make the perfect color ever!”

As friends are continuing to broaden their knowledge and understanding of color mixing, many have been experimenting with how to mix “perfect, special colors!”  In this video, Florentina tries many different times to mix a color that is “perfect” and still is working on getting her colors mixed just how she would like them.  Unfortunately, the batteries in my camera died before the end, but she was in fact able to mix a “rainbow” color that she was thrilled with!

“We’re so good at mixing paint, we should be on a commercial!”

Over the past three weeks, all children in Pre-K have been busy in the Studio working on mixing their own, unique colors with paint!  Friends are discovering that when you mix paint, it creates a new color that’s one of a kind and special.  We have been building rich, descriptive vocabulary as we broaden our knowledge and understanding of color.

The first week was all about painting with primary colors, which are red, yellow and blue. Friends were introduced to a palette, which is a tool that artists use when mixing colors because it has many segments that keep colors separated.  Next, we read the book Monsters Love Colors by Mike Austin and worked on mixing colors that the monsters in the book would love!

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Autumn: Where are the monsters?  I want to show them my painting!  They will like it.

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Jariel: I made another brown that looks like dirty mud.

Siah: I made green again, but now it’s dark green because I put more blue.

Cory: I used a lot of colors.  I love them all.  The yellow looks like honey mustard, red looks like sour soda and blue looks like water.

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Zavier: Red is the color of lava.  Green is the color of a leaf.  We’re so good at mixing paint, we should be on a commercial!

Maia: These colors are so cool because I made them myself.  I’m such an artist because I hold my palette.

Siena: I made three turquoises but they are all different.  Will the monsters like them?

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Sophie: Three greens that kind of look the same, but mostly different.  You have to look very closely.

Iris: I’m still working on making purple so it’s my favorite kind of purple and not just regular purple.

Andres: I have an idea, if you want green, just mix it yourself!

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The following week, children were excited to see that white and black paint were added to their palettes and were eager to begin mixing!  We read the book Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes by Eric Litwin and enjoyed singing Pete’s song about the different colors he stepped in.  After the story, friends continued to mix colors and created tints and shades with the black and white paint.

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Carlos: I’m going to make a pile of blueberries like what Pete stepped in in the book!

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Adrian: I didn’t know I could make so many different purples.  The white changed the purple to light purple and the black changed the purple to dark purple.  And when I put more red, it made red purple.  And when I put more blue, it made blue purple.

Nneka: Every color you make is different than someone else’s!

Claire: Christian, well done, the first color you mixed was turquoise!

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Florentina: Holding the palette is very hard.  Just like being an artist, you have to practice and you’ll get better.

Elijah: The white paint teleported into the black paint to make grey paint.

Marquis: All the colors together make mud puddle brown.

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Zavier: I’m making a magic trick with paint.  I’m changing pink to purple.

Claire: The color I mixed is stunning.  That means really, really pretty.

Zoe: I  made indigo and violet.  Violet is a beautiful type of purple.

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On to week three!  We began by reading My Many Colored Days by Dr.Seuss and learned that different colors can make us feel different ways, as well as evoke emotions and feelings.  In each circle on their paper, there was a different expression drawn in to support friends in thinking about how color is connected to the way we feel.  Children had so much fun acting out different expressions and mixing unique colors, as I added orange, green and purple to their palettes.

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Friends enjoyed making angry, surprised, happy and silly faces with their friends.  Also, Ra’Maya noticed that the faces on her shirt were similar to the faces on her paper!

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Adrian: Remember the Sophie book?  Her face turned red when she was mad so I’ll use red and orange for the mad face.

Miguel: That face looks sleepy, but like they’re having a good dream.  I’ll make it peaceful purple.  When I think of nervous, I can use all the colors and paint it kind of gently so it’s like a rainbow.

William: My mad face looks like it has fire on it.

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Mae: Did you have a feeling that we would like the feeling papers?  I don’t like the faces the most, I like the circles because they are my favorite shape!

Jariel: Dark yellow makes me feel angry!

Greyson: How does that face feel? It looks like he has a snake for the mouth.

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Friends will be continuing this Color Study project all the way up until our December 15th Showcase.  We will have lots of work to share with families and friends at the event!

Color Study Week 3: Feelings

Leading up to our December Showcase, Pre-K friends will be working on a long term color study project where they are learning about how to mix different shades of colors, as well as how to describe colors and how they make us feel.  I will post more about this very soon, but in the mean time, here’s a clip from one of todays art groups!

“Do you buy smocks at the smock shop?”

During the first six weeks of a new school year, children explore new materials in different areas of their classroom. Learning about new materials is a great way to build relationships with both classmates and new teachers!

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During the second week of school, Pre-K friends began working with oil pastels in the art area. It was exciting to compare and contrast crayons, which children have been working with since the beginning of the year, with oil pastels. Children were able to draw freely as they acquainted themselves with the new material. Once friends were finished with their masterpieces, they learned how to clean up oil pastels and where they could find them the next time they wanted to draw with them!

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“It feels soft on my hands.” -Ra’Maya

“When I roll the pastel, it makes a funny noise.” -Zeina

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“It’s on my fingers! What! How?”Jax

“When I mix them with my fingers it makes new colors. I’m an artist because I always draw nice things.” -Siena

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“I’m going to mix these two colors together and I don’t know what it’ll make. It’s making purple! You need to use red and blue if you want to make purple!” -Elliott

“Does the oil in them make it so they mix? And smudge?”Mae

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 “I mixed blue and yellow pastels to make green. Someone took the paper off but now I can draw with the pastel sideways!” -Miguel

“They look like crayons, but they don’t really draw like crayons.”-Isabella

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The third week of school was very exciting as we began learning about different types of paint! Friends learned about primary colors (red, yellow, blue) and how to mix them to create secondary colors (orange, green, purple). We practiced putting on smocks to protect our clothing, and learned how to carefully carry wet paintings to the drying rack.

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“The drying rack is like an oven.” -Ayub

“To make green darker, I can add blue. To make it lighter, I can add more yellow.” -Miguel

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 “I like painting the most because I love, love, love it so much because it always looks so good.” -Siah

 “Do you buy smocks at the smock shop?” -Elijah

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 “I’m dipping the brush carefully so I don’t get paint everywhere.” -Waju

 “I mixed all the colors and it made it look black. The paint is really strong. Oh yeah, my painting looks good and really awesome, doesn’t it?”-Marquis

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“You can paint whatever you want. I’m painting a tunnel for spiders, ants and walruses.”    Jariel

 “I know that blue and yellow makes green so you can do that if you want to make green. I like mixing red and yellow… it makes a golden color.” -Zeina

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