Our Civil Rights Mural is really coming along! Take a look at these kids working away in the photos below.
We've been working on this for 7 days after school now, and I am SUPER impressed by their energy and talent. These kids have been working with a couple teachers to put on an assembly to celebrate Cesar Chavez. They've booked speakers, ordered t-shirts and motivated each other to come in and paint with me everyday after school for this accompanying mural project. At the assembly, the kids and teachers will present their work to their school.
I must admit though that the phrases "I can't", "I'm not an artist", "Am I doing this right?, "You could do it better!" come up more in these higher grade levels (this includes Middle School), than with the Elementary kiddos. It can be tough as an art teacher to think of good responses to these types of comments from kids. I just try to stay encouraging and make sure to keep pointing out the SPECIFIC things that I see them doing well. I think that's the key: not just saying "oh, nice job, I love it!" but saying things like, "that hi-light color really brings out his eyes now" or whatever it is. The other thing I like to constantly remind kids when they are self-doubting or self-deprecating, is that to do anything well takes a LOT of practice. It took me years and years of crappy paintings and crappy drawings to be able to do what I do now (which can still turn out crappy even still!). You have to be patient with yourself whenever you're learning something new.
Enjoy and stay tuned for pics of the final mural!