Now I love art, I really do. But I was dreading this project. We were planning on painting and then decorating large cereal boxes that students brought in to use as their mailboxes. The project was going to be fun--but my goodness, my students have been bouncing off the walls this week! The last thing I wanted to do was pull out paint and let them have at it! But it was Tuesday and only two days left until the big day so I knew we had to get started.
Once everyone was seated with their boxes, we cut flaps in the sides, taped up loose ends and then got to work. Everyone had a paintbrush in hand and they rotated around the tables with their half-painted boxes as they looked for the perfect colors for decorating.....and quickly, my dread turned to joy--the paint project was a fabulous idea!
I realized that the exact thing that we needed at that moment was to paint ! Paint dripped off brushes and onto the tables, the floor, and of course onto arms, elbows and sleeves. But the happy noises of kids at creative work was so much fun! They were helpful and complimentary and shared ideas across the room. After about 40 minutes, we started collecting brushes and paint tins and everyone grabbed baby wipes and started to clean up the mess. After 5 minutes of chaos, the room was back to normal...except we had all these brightly colored boxes sitting on the tables! It was lovely!
So what did I learn? Maybe on those days when we just can't seem to settle down, when we feel frustrated and fed up, we just need to pull out the paint and let the students have at it! The best medicine might be a little bit of creativity.
Do you do art in your classroom? What is your favorite kind of art to do with students? Share your ideas here!!
**Wednesday PM: Here are pics of our finished boxes! They turned out SO good! I love the color combos that kids used! Today we added finishing touches with paint and kids decorated their boxes with heart and design cut-outs. Who would have thought that cereal boxes (and a few other random boxes) could look so good!!!