Friday, November 11, is Remembrance Day here in Canada. Like Vetran's Day, in the United States, it is a day to remember those who have fought for their country. Poppies are the symbol of remembrance for many countries.
In our class we made two art projects this week.
Both of these ideas came from Gail, at That Artist Woman. She is a Canadian, and an Art Teacher in a primary school. Her work is fabulous. She's so creative. Click here to hop on over and check out her blog.
During World War I, a Canadian Soldier, and Doctor, named John McRae, wrote a poem about the devestation he was witnessing. His poem, In Flander's Fields, has become an essential part of teaching about |Remembrance Day. Children all over Canada memorize and recite it on the days leading up to November 11, every year.
When I saw this idea on Gail's blog, I knew I wanted to whip out the watercolours, but I decided to simplify it for my Grade 2's. First the children watercoloured the field with green paint, and the sky with blue. The children made the smaller crosses by drawing them and cutting them out, but they were having so much difficulty with this, that I altered the activity. I cut out thin strips of white paper and had the children snip them to a long and a small length, and then glue them together like a cross.
As a Teacher in the public school system, I am always a bit leery of crosses or other religious symbols in my lessons. BUT, seeing as the poem specifically talks about the white crosses on Flander's Fields, I knew it would be OK in this context.
The 'poppies' were made with a punch - I need a better poppy shape for next year - and the title was one I made in MS Word, and copied on to yellow paper. The children cut them out and glued them on.
Next we made these large poppies. The background is a mixed media collage. The children 'painted' on some white glue and attached ripped pieces of black paper and newspaper. When the paper was covered, they then painted over the entire thing with white glue again. When it dried it had a nice shiny texture with no loose ends.
The poppies themselves are about 7 inches across. I made some tracers for them when I used to teach kindergarten, many, many years ago. I decided that the Grade 2's could use a bit more of a challenge than simply tracing and cutting. So first they sponged over a 8 x 8 piece of purple construction paper. They used mostly red, with a bit of white. I love how this gives texture to their work.
When it was all dried, the added the title in the same manner as the Flander's Fields activity.
When it was all done, I hung them out in the hallway.
I'm so proud of them, they did a great job don't you think??