Fired Clay Hearts

English Class sixth graders used small amounts of tempera paint mixed  together with white chalk paint to finish their fired clay heart boxes. The lovely textures and details of the boxes really popped with the application of the chalky pastel paint mixture. The next step will be to apply a transparent polish to seal the surface of the boxes.

English Class third graders used the same treatment for finishing their coiled hearts. After polish has been applied to seal the hearts, the third graders will make wire and glass bead hangers for their hearts. The hearts will be completed after the winter break which is during week 8. Check in with us here on the blog to see the completed hearts.

Valentines Day Heart Animals

After the Valentine’s Day morning assembly English Class pupils combined classes and worked together for a couple of lessons to create imaginary animals from hearts they had pre-cut from bits of scrap paper. Third graders and sixth graders are shown working in the collage above.

Pupils made all sorts of creatures, including whales, sea turtles, caterpillars and bees.

There were foxes, owls, skunks, raccoons, monkeys and rabbits.

 There were peacocks, pigs, pandas, a shark and whales.

There were rabbits, dogs, reindeer, butterflies, penguins, mice and ladybirds.

There were cats, elephants, a dinosaur, fish, rabbits and chicks. But most of all, there was lots and lots of creativity and camaraderie. You couldn’t ask for anything better on Valentine’s Day!

Clay Heart Workshops

Over the past three weeks English Class pupils have been participating in clay workshops organized by Ms. Sylvia. The sixth graders learned about  three hand-building techniques using clay: the slab technique, the coil technique and the pinch pot technique. Then, using the slab technique the sixth graders created interesting textures on the clay they rolled out. They carefully constructed heart-shaped boxes and lids for the boxes.

It was heartening to watch the sixth graders work on their heart boxes. A few pupils had worked with clay before and they were ready and willing to share their know-how with their classmates. In the collage above you can see some of the heart boxes after they have been fired in the kiln.

The third graders also learned about clay hand-building techniques. They used the coil method to create coiled clay hearts. The third graders worked with great focus and concentration.

Our amazing English Class first graders outdid themselves with the intensity that they poured into their coiled clay hearts. The completed hearts were lovely.

English Class second graders also learned about clay hand-building techniques. They worked very independently and intently on their coiled hearts. It bears note that the second graders did an excellent job of  cleaning up after themselves. There was no evidence in the classroom that they had used heavily pigmented red clay!

Hopefully later their spring there will be time for the fourth and fifth graders to also experience a clay workshop. Check in with the blog after our winter break to see how the pupils finished their clay work after it was fired.

Lots Going on!

The B-wing second floor of Cygnaeus School is a hive of busy, busy pupils these days. Even recesses are occasionally being sacrificed for the good of the cause.  Excitement is definitely mounting as pupils and teachers plan and work together. Readers of our blog might wonder what they are up to. Keep following our posts for the next couple of weeks to find out!

Gel Print Workshops

English Class pupils had a grand old time earlier last week at workshops learning how to make gel prints. The pupils were very quick learners and the guest director of the workshop, Ms. Sylvia, was bursting with pride at the wonderful pictures the pupils printed!

The subjects of templates and masks were Finnish national symbols (birch trees, lilies of the valley, bears, holly blue butterflies, perch and whooper swans) in honour of Finland’s centenary celebration on December 6th.

Colours were limited to shades of blue and white. Fifth grade peer pals carefully guided their first graders in using the proper terminology and equipment while gel printing. Other classes worked independently.

More than a couple of hundred amazing prints were made during the course of the workshops. These prints will be displayed on the walls in the second floor corridors after a few more details have been added to the cards. It was a great success!


Halloween Film Project Movies (Part 2)

Here are three more completed Halloween films made by English Class fourth, fifth and sixth grade pupils. Please refer back to the two earlier posts by scrolling down to get more background on this project.

Halloween Film Making Project

In the week leading up to Autumn Break, all of the English Class classes worked on a week long project of making a short Halloween movie. To start the project, the pupils watched a slide programme detailing the components of a story:  the characters, the setting, the plot, the challenge or conflict, and the resolution.  Fourth, fifth and sixth graders worked together in small mixed-aged groups as did first, second and third graders. Each group used a die to determine the setting, characters, challenge /conflict and time of the story, according to the guidelines pictured above.

Then the pupils worked together as a group to write the script of their Halloween movie.

On the second day of the project, after seeing a slide presentation about camera angles and camera shots, each group created a storyboard for their movie. Rather than using storyboard apps, storyboards were created by drawing and writing.

Each group included information about the camera angles and camera shots on their storyboards, along with notation about movement.

For the older pupils the third day of the project was devoted to creating props, masks and costumes.

Once done, groups began filming their productions. The pupils used the iMovie app on their iPads. It was gratifying to see watch them put what they had learned into action. Without exception, teachers were impressed with the work pupils did.

The first, second and third grade pupils used stick puppets and self-made background settings to actualize their movies. Lots of time and effort was put into the details.

The younger pupils paid careful attention to their scripts and storyboards. Their interest levels topped the charts!

Keep following the blog to see some of the completed, edited versions of the Halloween movies the English Class pupils made!