Monday, August 23, 2010

Art Explorers

As summertime is winding down, so too are our summer preschool camp programs. Our final camp of the summer gave children the opportunity to explore art in a variety of mediums. Whether children are reveling in the wet, bright-colored "squishiness" of tempera paint, creating a vista of lines and curves or thoughtfully poking or smoothing a mound of dough, they are developing artistic expression.

The Preschool Summer Camp children may not know who Jean Dubuffet is; they did, however, explore his sculpture style when we created Styrofoam peanut sculptures as we looked at images of his work. Small pieces of tissue paper, wrapped around the bottom of a dowel rod and glued on a piece of paper, gave us the same sense of color that we saw in Water Lilies by Claude Monet. And a favorite Eric Carle book, Red Fox, inspired some ideas for creating art from recycled wallpaper pieces, Eric Carle style.

Did you know the arts can make you smart? Recent research demonstrates a correlation between the arts and higher academic performance. In the report, “Learning, Arts and the Brain,” seven universities presented several studies discussing how visual arts, music, and dance training and skill impact learning (The DanaFoundation, 2008). Based on the explorations and discoveries during Art Explorers week, we would have to agree!

This week's montage of pictures shows children exploring art activities in our camp room as well as enjoying Museum exhibits with fellow campers. A BIG THANK YOU to Sue Kessler, one of our camp facilitators, for putting this montage (and some of our others) together with thought-provoking music.

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