News from the Art Cafe, 2nd Grade

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Dear AJA Parents,

I am SO excited to have the opportunity to spend quality time exploring your children’s creative energy in Art at the Austin Jewish Academy and look forward to spending many precious hours with them.

Starting off the year we consider Marcel Duchamp (1887 –1968), one of the first artists to take “readymade objects” out of their natural environment and place it in an environment of the Gallery – thus creating an “art-piece”. One would ask: “Is this Art?” Well, that’s a discussion for another time.

In the meantime, your children are on the verge of exploration and discovery – Give them a chance to investigate the meaning of ”Art” by donating all your “trash/recyclables” to the Art Room Treasure Box found in Room 230 (The Art Room).

Please donate:

Magazines, newspapers, plastic bottles (all sizes), toilet and pare towels cardboard rolls, plastic containers (Small and large Yogurt/Dan Active), lids of jars/bottles, baby food jars, soda/beer bottle caps, wine bottle corks, soda can openers, puzzles (all sizes) pieces, washers, shaped pieces of wood, broken toy parts (party favors, doll parts), old keys, computer parts, brown paper shopping bags, small plastic containers (contact lens, pill box containers), old toothbrushes, dental floss, styrofoam trays, packaging peanuts, small cardboard boxes, small wooden boxes, shoes boxes, etc.


Glass jars or bottles as glass is not safe for the children.

If you are not sure that your budding artists can use particular items – please bring them anyway and I will recycle what we don’t use.

Please bring all recyclables to the Art room #230.

Thank you so much,

Ms. Slom

(Susan Slomowitz, AJA Art Specialist)

The art curriculum at the AJA is based on the elements and principles of Art.

In 2nd gradethe first Element of Art that we are learning is “Texture”. Texture is the look and feel of a surface (rough, smooth, soft, hard, glossy, etc) and it can be physical (tactile) or visual (illusion). Texture adds richness and dimension to two dimensional art works.

We looked at Starry Night (1889) by Vincent Van Gogh (1853-1890) and I gave the students a palette of sky blue, purple regular blue, black and white tempera paints.  They mixed the paints right onto the paper to make the sky.  I challenged them to try and mix as many different shades of blue as possible. They then painted the foreground black. While this was drying, the students created a village using paper, oil pastels, scissors and glue sticks.  They made houses, libraries, schools, etc.  They then added the cypress tree made from black paper and oil pastels, and moon and stars by cutting and gluing yellow, orange and white construction paper.  They added moon glow and the swirls with white and yellow tempera and a q-tip.  The students got pretty creative with this part.

I love the variety one can get with this project!