Saturday, February 9, 2008

Just making stuff

I started off by showing them pictures of artworks by famous artists. I asked them why they thought the artist created each particular artwork, and recieved typical first grade answers, which made me smile. I asked them if we always had to have a reason, if it was okay to make something just for fun. Then I shared with them some of my memories of making artwork when I was around their age. I told them about my grandma (my dad's mom, Sybil Christensen), how she loves supplies. She had pom-poms in every color and size. She had felt and pipe-cleaners and adhesives of every flavor, and all of it in containers. When some of us privilaged older grandchildren got invited to do a craft at her house, it was super fun but very organized. It wasn't a free-for-all with the supplies, but it was fun. Those memories are good ones.
My dad has always said that he didn't push his kids into making art, but he did supply us with every kind of art tool or craft substance we desired. It's true and I'm seeing the value in that right now. In my early years of university, I often wished that he'd taught me how to draw, to prepare me for my future career. But looking back from here, I'm so glad for the freedom. There was no pressure to perform, no pressure to think or show off a talent. I got to enjoy the pure love of making stuff.
I talked to my kitten's first grade class about making stuff just for fun. We talked about the joy of it. There were no written out art objectives, no connecting it to the curriculum or anything I learned in my education classes, just the fun of making stuff. I think making stuff has it's place too and shouldn't be forgotten.
I didn't tell them anything they didn't already know. We made a big mess together and had a blast. Thanks little ones.

Go try it. Tissue paper, pipe-cleaners and scissors. That's it. It's nice to bring color in when it's all grey outside. Seriously, everybody go try it.
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pamo said...

ahhh making stuff. you speak to one of the essential needs of my heart.

The Petersons said...

You are brilliant. Although it's 80 degrees here today, bright-sunny-and warm. The birds are singing, maybe I can make something outside... or take some pictures. Thanks for the invitation to creativity! :-)

I Am said...

When my eldest son was in kindergarten each child in the class made him a flower for his birthday. That was six years ago and I still have them--I love them.
You're such a good mum, your children are lucky to have you.

Sara said...

Felt, elmers glue, glitter and googley eyes here I come! Love those flowers!

Suzy said...

Yay! I'm so glad you found my blog!! Thanks for leaving your sweet comment. Isn't it sooooo much fun making stuff with your kids? Your kids are so lucky to have a professional! Thanks for the band-aid idea--we really needed it. Your blog is so fun!! I think I could spend many hours on it! Your paper flowers are BEAUTIFUL!! We're probably going to make some closer to spring. We're about to make some Valentines!! Much love to you, my fellow princess! And Happy Valentines Day!!


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