Sydney Prather: Visiting Artist

Today’s Visiting Artist was our very own Sydney Prather! Ms. Sydney helps in Toddler classes and with After Care, so she’s a familiar face at our school. Many students didn’t know that Ms. Sydney’s passion is Musical Theater, and that she has 15 years experience as an actress, and 5 years as a director and choreographer. She gave presentations about musical theater before holding customized workshops for students from Early Childhood to Upper Elementary!

Ms. Sydney led character study sessions for Early Childhood students. They listened to “I Just Can’t Wait to Be King” from the Lion King and identified the different characters they heard, as well as the emotions that came across in the vocals. Students practiced expressing different emotions vocally and through facial expressions. Then they walked to the music, first as themselves, then as different animals. It was so fun to move our bodies in ways we have seen and imagined animals doing! Check out how well they moved on Facebook.

Later in the day, kindergarteners had a chance to expand on this animal movement lesson. They learned moves Ms. Sydney choreographed especially for them! Check out the video of their routine on Facebook.

Lower and Upper Elementary students learned a dance created by Ms. Sydney, piece by piece. They made sure their faces were expressive while they followed the steps. They learned about staging as they put it all together and performed “Revolting Children” from Matilda the Musical. Teachers and staff were invited to see their final performance, which you can see on Facebook.

Bonus: Ms. Sydney is starting a musical theater club at Lamplighter! Lower and Upper Elementary students can enroll. The club will meet Thursdays from 3:30-5:00pm, from January 10th to May 2nd. You can sign up online at bit.ly/MusicalTheaterClub.

Advertisements

Starting Our Paper Study

[[Note: It’s been quiet on the blog, but busy in MakerSpace! This post was originally supposed to go up on September 28th… whoops!]]

Our Scarecrow Study wrapped up after we talked about shapes we see in art and everyday life. Even though we used over 9,000 round sequins, we created a different shape and structure from them! Students read I Spy Shapes in Art by Lucy Micklethwait, and we took some time to notice all the shapes around us, and what smaller shapes made up larger structures.

9D4B5519-4645-4480-ADCB-31EA0C2C0D60

This carried over into the start of our Paper study. We used colored paper to make collages, using only our fingers to tear the paper – no scissors! It was challenging but fun to try and rip paper into the exact shapes we wanted. We quickly learned that if you can’t tear the shape you want, you can tear small pieces and glue them into a specific shape on your paper!

Early Childhood classes read Henri’s Scissors by Jeanette Winter, and Lower and Upper Elementary classes read Drawing with Scissors by Jane O’Connor.

0D1445D5-FBB4-4CAD-B39D-3B967A4399B9

Through these books, we learned how Matisse created collages by cutting shapes from painted paper. This inspired us to use scissors for our next set of collages. Matisse is our Artist Study for the Fall gallery show, so you’re seeing our bright, bold collage-inspired paintings when you walk into the school!

839B7E6C-8207-4F39-97E9-524672C6D93E

 

More Scarecrow Structures

Our students have been a roll with creative scarecrow ideas. They have been using unconventional materials to build unique scarecrows that we can’t resist showing off.

A49C7C19-9A31-4755-98A3-070E456CFF32

A scarecrow drawing was transformed into a mask after using a paper punch.

 

7475CE8E-8CE6-4497-A682-F2A36353F4D5

The Lego scarecrow has long arms for the birds to land on.

 

Even scarecrows built from blocks all look different:

C85F92AF-AF61-444F-A2A3-3708B0C9B2F1

This scarecrow has two tall yet sturdy legs.

 

81BE2BAD-DAC9-4EA5-9C6D-2092F2583794

This scarecrow includes elements of color and texture to attract birds.

 

8F0F8B9C-D418-4021-86E9-12B37DAAD61D

Students worked together to create a large, detailed scarecrow: notice the shoelaces on his feet! They are hiding a ticking timer in his arm to scare off birds.

 

B150B99D-68CA-4C21-BC44-570006DFDAD7

Inspired by all the scarecrow designing and building, a student decided to draw a crow!

Scarecrow Study

To prepare to build our school scarecrow, students have been learning about the history of scarecrows and examples of durable materials.

Students shared what they knew of scarecrows’ design and purpose, and we learned that children in medieval Britain used to act as their own scarecrows! They would stand in the fields and wave their arms to scare away birds. This and other historical instances of humans acting as scarecrows led to our more modern interpretation of scarecrows dressed in human clothes, with lifelike faces. Scarecrows are still used today, and often use technology to help scare off birds with noises and movement.

We designed scarecrows using a variety of supplies in the MakerSpace WonderLab.

B228B33F-6AA9-4E40-B69D-00FA7C7C9DA1

A scarecrow puppet

8B897131-5818-401C-8EDD-B1757AEF6DF6

A scarecrow face designed with Tangram pieces – she even added a white moustache!

45DE2DE8-9A69-499B-AFC1-11C09E3F3B67

Magnaflex pieces created a flexible dancing scarecrow

 

Students talked about durable materials, and what we could use to make our scarecrow last outside for two months. Students tested different materials for durability, and built sturdy scarecrow structures that were tall, yet tough to knock over.

EE93E678-EB63-4FBB-A5C8-8F1D921DDC37

Our tallest scarecrow yet!

B137FEFC-6E9F-48FB-AA91-7842BD41CAC0

A sturdy scarecrow with small arms – less room for the birds to land!