Grade 3 – Jellyfish

Jellyfish make a very nice subject for a variety of artworks. Their translucence and indiscriminate form give freedom to those who are more painterly with their brush while at the same time giving something to those learners who need a subject to sketch.

I found this project on the deep space sparkle website. It uses a variety of media which is always nice and results in a beautiful artwork! The grade 3s did it on A3 paper. They began by making a gradient from black, through purple, Blue or red, to white. They then took a white crayon and drew the outlines of some jellyfish. Taking a black crayon they added in some seaweed before using chalk pastel to add some colour to their jelly’s. This they smudged to give them their translucent look. The last step was to add other fish and sea life using small pieces of coloured paper.

The learners really enjoyed this project and it was fairly simple to execute! The resulting artwork looked beautiful as well!


Grade 3 – Picasso Peace Dove

20160311_085959This class began with a short PDF introduction of Pablo Picasso. Though they learnt a little about his cubist artworks the main focus of the intro was to show them Picasso’s work: Dove of Peace of 1949.

I showed a picture of a real dove and then compared it to Picasso’s dove and asked what were a few of the differences between the two. The learners were quick to see that Picasso had made a simplified version of a real dove, using only line to present it.

The project linked with this artwork was one that I first found on Pinterest. I took this idea and, adapting it a little, gave it to the kids to do!

The project consisted of a few basic steps:

Step 1 was to take a black crayon and draw a dot in the center of their page. They then had to create a number of lines emanating from this point and running off the page. This divided the page into a number of sections which the learners had to create the outlines of patterns using the same crayon.

Step 2 was to use watercolor paints to color in these patterns.

Step 3 was to create a random animal of peace. (initially it was just a dove but so many of the learners wanted to do other animals that I relented…Besides, it was fun!) This they drew on a separate A4 piece of paper using cocktail sticks and ink.

The fourth and final step was to stick this in the middle of their radial design.

This was a nice project which was easy to manage and also fun for the learners!

Grade 3 – Vacation to Mars

20160311_085912It was the beginning of term and a new class of grade 3s walked into my classroom for the first time. What to do with them…

Something fun, something creative and yet something that ties in with their lingering feelings of the holidays…?

I know! They will imagine their family went on vacation to mars and draw some of what they got up to there!

The grade 3s did this with much enthusiasm, first doing an planning sketch in pencil and then completing it in oil pastel. The learners were also given baby oil. The learners smeared the baby oil onto parts of their artworks, reactivating the oil pastel and making it a little like paint on the paper. This was very fun but we found that this techniques does not work very well with detailed areas. It also changes the colour of the paper for a while.

The works the kids came up with were beautiful! They were doing everything from having tea with aliens to surfing in a massive, gravity free, insulated wave generator!

Grade 3 – Minecraft Selfies

Blog_003For those few uninformed adults, Minecraft is a gaming universe that has gripped our kids in a big way! Minecraft is kind of like Lego in the realm of computers. Though it has many modes, It sees players entering a gigantic world and being able to build constructions out of textured cubes.minecraftI discovered this project while on pinterest. The learners are asked to make a self portrait of themselves in the style of Minecraft. They began by drawing a very simple version of their face in pencil on the base paper. They then cut coloured paper into smaller squares which they then used to build up their face. The kids creativity soon took over and small 9 year old’s were sprouting goaties and afros in no time! We even had a zombie Camps Bay child!!

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The project took some of the children 2 weeks while a few finished in just one lesson. Everyone enjoyed it!

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Grade 3 – Earbud Art

004Impressionism was an art movement that was around in the 19th century. It saw artists moving away from a photo realistic representation of forms as they rather sought to express light and its changing qualities. The form this took practically was  artists using their brushes to dab paint onto their canvas rather then stroke the paint on. 003

005In this project, our grade 3s attempted to do something similar. Except that instead of using a brush to do the dabbing, they used earbuds! They were shown some images by Impressionist artists such as Monet and were told the way that Impressionist artists would often ‘mix’ color by dotting different colors next to each other. Thus motivated, the class was excited to get dotting!001They were given pictures of animals to use as reference or merely as inspiration. They began by using the earbuds but were allowed to use brushes as well to finish off. It was a fun project and the work that was produced looks great as you can see!


Grade 3 – Ndebele beaded dolls


The idea behind the first term was to loosely base the grade 3 lessons around African art. In South Africa we have a people group known as the Ndebele. During the Apartheid they were not allowed to communicate in ways they did before. In response to this, the Ndebele developed a way of using beautifully crafted designs, both on the decoration of their abodes and in their bead work to communicate amongst themselves. In this coded, secret language, the colors, and the shapes used, all combined to tell of events (such as marriages), emotions as well as personal prayers.

popklkraleThough this tradition continues in many townships and villages, the artwork is often now sold in craft markets.  They make and sell beaded bracelets and beaded dolls that have a specific meaning.

Made by a learner who is from Korea.
Made by a learner who is from Korea.

After a small introduction to the rich history of these dolls, our grade 3 learners were set to creating their own 2D doll! The learners were not confined by the style of the Ndebele dolls but, after being inspired by them, could depart to follow wherever their imagination would lead them.

A boy who asked to make a boy doll
A boy who asked to make a boy doll

The learners began with an A3 piece of white paper. On this they drew the outlines of the dolls in pencil. They then went over these in black Koki. Finally colouring it in using Kokis. This was then cut out. 2 pieces of coloured sugar paper were given to the learners. From the first, they cut out a background. I suggested that they do two other doll silhouettes but this soon became any cool background that they desired! This they stuck on the second coloured piece of sugar paper before pasting the doll on the top.


Though the process is labourious and does take a while, the end result is well worth it!