How did that happen? Where did it come from?
Those questions are so important when we’re teaching from an inquiry stance but tracing things back is sometimes hard. Ideas are so organic that we can struggle to identify where the ignition point was.
This was not one of those times.
When our partner architect talked to us about drawing from different perspectives, it got me thinking about other ways that we could get the children to consider multiple view points.
Then, serendipitously, Teacher Tom sent out this blog post. In it, he wrote about cutting wooden blocks for something he called “tall paintings“. What are tall paintings, I wondered? So I clicked on that link which brought me to another post of his and then to this video. Wow.
Now, I do not have much in the way of woodworking skills so I sent the video out to the parents on a Friday and by Monday (Monday!) we had several boxes full of mini tall painting towers.
We got busy with the glue gun and tiny cups of acrylic paint. What amazed us was the way that this art project appealed to children who very rarely visit the art studio. Its structural elements and the kinaesthetic quality of pouring the paint mesmerized some of our reluctant artists and kept them engaged for the entire morning play block. Then they begged to do it again!
The finished products are mesmerizing, even hypnotic, and I’m particularly intrigued by how different they look when viewed from the top versus from the side. This part of our architecture project has been a great reminder of how important it is not to dismiss a child’s lack of engagement with a particular subject – it may just be that they want to approach it differently. Providing those multiple entry points is so important!