Teaching Arts at Day Job

My supervisor at my day job (I’m an assistant site director for an after school program) asked me to create art activities that can be STEM related for the 4th and 5th grade class we have in our program. Last week I introduced the students to Glow in the Dark Chalk 57368739_672732713169976_8826717809770758144_nwhich consisted of mixing water, plaster, glow in the dark paint, and color dye. The moans and groans of “this is boring” filled my ears. It was a bit of a trial and error as some of the mixture was too watery from some over enthusiastic 9 and 10 year olds.

We examined the chalk we made last week and to my surprise, these same kids that whined “it’s so boring,” became very cooperative investigating where our mixture went wrong last week. These kids shown me teamwork (I told the students that each of them need to 57294124_2154316834810159_7992345259185012736_ncontribute to the steps, whether it was measuring, mixing or pouring which they did), decision making (deciding as a group which colors we would use for this week’s chalks) and responsibilities (they cleaned up all the mess we made and moved the trays of drying plaster the office space). I was very proud of my students and it was nice to use art as a way to get these kids engaged in learning, getting messy and working together.

Not sure if I should do toy design with them but they’re really good at drawing. When I joined a few months ago, I tried to get to know them by making stickers of the drawings they made me and they were excited to see the outcome of their work. Toy or no toys, that is the question…

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