Yes, here is it Thursday and sadly, I am again, just getting to my reflections on "Talking, Drawing, Writing".... sigh..... Life just seems to get in the way!
Anyway....... Chapter 4 is entitled "The Craft of Drawing" and it offers such wonderful ideas and tips for teaching kids to add details to their drawing. The authors continue to stress how important it is to encourage kids to do detailed drawings before adding words to their writing. One area that was interesting to me was how even though children receive lessons on how to draw, when left to draw on their own, they often return to their sketchy drawings with little detail. They feel that children need to receive continued instruction and practice before this type of drawing becomes internalized. I agree with this thought. When I think back to my own students, I know that I become a bit discouraged when they are unable to make connections between the lesson that was just taught and the outcome of their production. Just as with everything that we teach, repetition, practice, and an environment where it is safe to make mistakes and learn from them is the way it should be with everything!
We use "Handwriting Without Tears" in our kindergarten. We love this program for many reasons, but one of the fun reasons is that they teach children how to draw people. Although stick figures can be endearing, this type of drawing is not representational of people and honestly, I think children WANT to know how to draw people. In "Handwriting Without Tears", children learn a song about the parts of the body which I plan to use as a perfect springboard for using the techniques in "Talking, Drawing, Writing" for drawing people. The authors show children how to use ovals to draw people. They discuss how to use ovals to draw a head, a torso (I love this word!), and 3 ovals each for arms and legs. Another interesting idea that they use for showing children that drawing people is just using ovals is the use of a transparency. They cover a picture from a book with a transparency and use a black transparency marker to draw ovals upon the picture. Wow! What a wonderful way to show children that drawing ovals is one way to make people look real!
The majority of this chapter is filled with descriptions for how to draw people and I just love them all! They use these terms for their drawing... head, torso, upper arm, lower arm, hands, upper leg, lower leg, feet. I love these terms and plan to use them right away! I also love that the authors give suggestions for picture books that can be used for teaching the skills that they are describing. One of my favorite books is the "The Color of Us" by Lillian Katz. In this book, Ms Katz describes the various colors of skin and uses such delicious words to describe them...... gingerbread, peach, chocolate........ I have a resource that I use every year when we discuss the colors of skin. I use multi cultural construction paper, but other types of media can be used such as multi-cultural crayons and colored pencils.
Besides skin color, the authors give ideas and tips Drawing People in Action, Drawing People from the back, Drawing Hair styles, Drawing clothing on people, Planning how to draw your story, and Going beyond safe drawing. I especially enjoyed reading the section on encouraging children to go beyond what they feel comfortable drawing . They feel it is important that children realize that their drawings must match what they want to say. Drawing a house, flowers, and a tree may look realistic and is easy to do, but if they want to tell a story about what happened on the INSIDE of their house, drawing the outside of their house is not going to show what they want to say. So, helping children to understand that their drawing needs to match the thoughts in their head is critical to getting them to writing words that describe a story.
If you are not reading this book, you HAVE to get it and read it! I just cannot write enough words about how inspiring it has been to read! If you ARE reading it, isn't it worth the time? I am so glad that this book was a recommended read for me this summer!
If you would like to see my resource on "I Am Beautiful" , click the image below. It will be on sale until July 1!
Now.... Throwback Thursday........
Oh and one more thing.... Ashley Hughes is still hosting her fantastic giveaway on her blog. This is Day 4 - Woo hoo! Click the image below to take you there!