Monday, November 14, 2011

EDU 301 Birds inspired by John James Audubon

The Mobile Museum of Art has a beautiful exhibit featuring the birds of John James Audubon this semester, October 14, 2011 – January 8, 2012
"John James Audubon (1785–1851) was a French-American ornithologist, naturalist, hunter and painter whose name is synonymous with the study and preservation of American wildlife. His masterpiece, The Birds of Americafolio, and his lifetime of written journals stand as an unsurpassed contribution to the world of fine art, natural science and American history and literature."

As a follow-up to the Mobile Museum of Art field trip our future elementary teachers took, they each produced a bird of their choice using only white drawing paper and traditional crayons. We wanted to create vibrant images for a display with impact using materials all elementary teachers could realistically possess, even under budget cuts and lack of support for the arts. We also wanted to connect with the natural sciences as a springboard for ornithology.

Students were given the following directions for the crayon bird drawing activity:
  • Study Audubon's work and other images of birds. 
  • Choose a bird and environment you wish to create. 
  • Complete the Bird Nature Study Observation Worksheet.
  • Sketch the bird on 9 X 12 white drawing paper. 
  • Use only crayons to create your art.
  • Emphasize the main subject through SIZE, PLACEMENT, and CONTRAST.
  • With a light color crayon or pencil, sketch lightly to block-in your composition. 
  • Do not draw details until you begin using actual colors. 
  • All colors must be SATURATED - bear down hard on the crayon so that all the drawing surface is covered with color that stands out. 
  • Leave no lightly colored areas. Leave no white spots.
  • Blend colors, tints, shades.
  • You may use a paper clip or other tool to scratch through colors to make lines, textures, patterns. 

Internet Resources: John James Audubon's Birds
"A true conservationist is a man who knows that the world is not given by his fathers, but borrowed from his children." ~John James Audubon 

Birds of America - Check out the list of State Birds with images of Audubon's art!

National Audubon Society

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Pondering MOTIVATION: Incentives? Cash Rewards for Learning?

Should we expect desire to learn to be intrinsic, ALWAYS, across all disciplines?
Should age of the learner be a factor?
Short-term effects? Long-term effects?

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Puppetry in the Elementary School

"Inanimate objects brought to life through manipulation to convey a story."

We explored the multiple types of puppets including: rod, hand, marionette, and shadow. 

As a preservice teacher and student in EDU 301 you are required to:
  • Decide on a puppet you will create and how you will use it to teach a concept or tell a story
  • Identify a resource such as a book, site, or become your own playwright
  • Construct your puppet and any backdropsscenery, and/or props
  • Work individually or with a group to create a puppet show incorporating music, theatre, and visual arts to teach and/or entertain
  • You will be required to video the 2-to-3 minute performance in class on an assigned date; be sure you are prepared BEFORE you attend class to video record:
    • All puppets should be created prior to this date
    • All background scenery and staging should be created
    • The performance should be rehearsed; this is NOT improvisation (know your scriptarticulate and enunciate the dialogue; practice the gesturing of your puppets)
    • ALCOS standards from Theatre and Visual Arts should be identified
      Shadow Puppetry resources:

29 Ways to Stay Creative


For me, #4 is the toughest, you do NOT want to hear my #7, I do #8 all day, and want to do more of #17! 

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Leading by Example and a Pointer Finger: Enriching our Lives through the Arts and Technology (high and low)

I was reminded today of the influence of people who lead by example, as I assisted Bonnie and Ricky Trione in sharing their inspirational and educational messages about dealing with adversity, perseverance, "choosing your battles", and that "everyone is an artist."

Ms. Howard's second-graders at Booth Elementary School were engaged and intrigued as "Mr. Ricky" explained how he became blind in two separate accidents, demonstrated how he paints with textured "puffy paint" and his fingers, and shared some of the strategies and "tools" he uses to accommodate for not being able to see.

With the "tool" of a finger to feel texture and finger-paint (creating beautiful images without the sense of sight), and a high-tech gadget which identifies colors, Ricky Trione demonstrated that with desire, perseverance, and support systems we can often find ways to achieve goals which may initially seem unachievable. (This is a message I never grow tired of hearing and was again reminded by example that outcomes are also dependent upon my own actions, decisions and attitude.)

As I listened today (as I have so many times before) to the information shared, I really focused for the first time on how Ricky authentically utilizes tools and technology to achieve his goals through art. I was struck by the diversity of these "tools" from the most primitive (a finger) to sophisticated (talking watch, talking computer, and color-identifier).

So I thought about how the latest and greatest technologies are very cool and can certainly serve a purpose, but no matter how sophisticated the technology, it may not always be the most useful; the process may just require paint on a paper plate and a pointer finger!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Ibiyinka Alao, Nigeria's Ambassador of Art

--> You for a WONDERFUL Presentation:
Ibiyinka Alao   
Nigeria's Ambassador of Art
University of South Alabama
College of Education
UCOM 3212
February 8th, 2011

A special THANK YOU to: 
Nancy Raia , Community Arts Director
Eastern Shore Art Center
401 Oak Street
Fairhope Al 36532

Ibiyinka’s presentation focuses on contemporary African life and how that experience translates into his artwork, which celebrates diversity and achieving peace through creativity and expression. As an artist, his vibrant paintings help him to articulate the message that happiness in life is a code which we can often decode by listening to silent voices and speaking without talking. His paintings are full of life, color and visions from his heart. Ibiyinka strives to offer us visual passage into his painted stories using his African homeland, its villages and people as treasured subjects.

Born on Oct. 17, 1975 in Nigeria, Ibiyinka has become a world-acclaimed messenger of peace. Trained as an architect at the University Of Ile-Ife Nigeria, he won global recognition in 2001 when he won the prestigious United Nation’s International Art Competition. As a result, Nigeria awarded him the honorary title of “Art Ambassador” for his country. In 2003, he was awarded the title “Ambassador of Peace” by the United Nations Population Fund in recognition of his message of peace, love and cultural harmony between all people. He has exhibited over 400 paintings in a broad list of countries and places — The Harvard Business School, Indianapolis Art Center, the Martin Luther King Art Center, the Empire State Building and the United Nations headquarters.

Paige V. Baggett, Ibiyinka Alao, and Nancy Raia 

Ibiyinka's works of art are vibrant, fascinating, and inspired me to learn more about the messages he communicates. 
A few of my favorites include:
Ca. 1999
18" x 10"
"In this painting, I try to show a woman who is confident in her own surrounding. A woman — who exhumes confidence in herself, and upholds peace in her own home protecting her children — is reflective of this eagle eye in a girl who is usually seen in a group dancing with her colleagues. My argument here is that she can equally feel at home, peaceful and confident, even when she is alone. The garden of green in the background is to signify her fertility."
more favorites...

Ashley Bryan

It was an honor to meet Ashley Bryan today at the Fairhope, AL library!

Bryan is known for retelling African folktales in a distinct, rhythmic prose that is heavily influenced by African-American poetry; he is an eclectic artist who uses painting, poetry, music, collage, and prose to tell stories.

 Bryan shared his favorite poetry including the works of Langston Hughes. He indicated poetry gives him ideas for writing stories and the words which should be expressively brought alive; he so dramatically demonstrated.
 Ashley Bryan shared many of his inspirational books including Beautiful Blackbird.

 Bryan told us to begin with a LOVE of who YOU are. "Love yourself and your people."
 "Feel the spirit of the voice, the spirit of the oral tradition." 
"Find the most expressive way to bring words alive."

My America is a beautiful (new to me) book Ashley Bryan shared with us today depicting 2 very different styles of art created by Bryan and his friend and artist Gilchrist. They each represented sky, water, land, animals, and people of America. Bryan explained that he and Gilchrist worked completely independently to represent the concepts in "My America." The book depicts the very different (but equally beautiful) visual representation styles of each artist.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

I want to do this...

Wouldn't you want to be in this class?

Ten fifth graders spent over two months of lunch recesses creating the Fugleflick, Show of Hands. They recorded an original song, storyboarded, filmed, and animated to put together this video that gives new meaning to the phrase, "Talk to the hand."

Dryden Elementary Art Room: Learning Skills for their Lives

Innovative from Tricia Fuglestad on Vimeo.

Technology in the Hallways

Check this out!

Kim Holland is blazing the trail for a revolution in Mobile, Co. She just finished her book trailer for a bulletin board at St. Elmo Elementary. A movie for a bulletin board? You read it right.


Go beyond the traditional hearts and share the HEART ART of Pop Artist Jim Dine with your students this Valentine’s Day.

Jim Dine is an American Pop artist who used common images in his art. He may be best known for his heart paintings. His style is one students can really appreciate and derive inspiration from as they experiment with the heart shape, colors, and various art media. 

Various heART projects inspired by the work of Jim Dine:

Monday, January 31, 2011

Music and Songs about Rain

I really do like rainy days & nights, and similarly many of my favorite songs are "Songs about Rain." "Rainy Days and Mondays" don't really get me down, but this Monday Mobile, AL weather just has me thinking of them, so... "I'm just singing in the rain"...
Some of my favorites:

"Music is what feeling sounds like"
   “When the music changes, so does the dance” ~African Proverb
"Music is an outburst of soul." ~Frederick Delius
A painter paints pictures on canvas.  But musicians paint their pictures on silence.  ~Leopold Stokowski

Music produces a kind of pleasure which human nature cannot do without.  ~Confucius

Music is the mediator between the spiritual and the sensual life.  ~Ludwig van Beethoven

Music is the shorthand of emotion.  ~Leo Tolstoy

"Music profoundly affects my mood." ~Paige Vitulli 

Sunday, January 30, 2011

How to be an Explorer of the World: Portable Art/Life Museum

"At any given moment, no matter where you are, there are hundreds of things around you that are interesting and worth documenting." -Keri Smith
"Ethnography, N. The documentation and analysis of a particular culture through field research."

As I think about stopping to smell the roses, and promoting the observation skills of artists and scientists, I am reminded of this COOL book. 
Here are some of my favorites you might want to consider personally and as a springboard for learning:
  • Inspire students to: Observe, Collect, Analyze, Compare, and Notice patterns."LIFE IS A SCAVENGER HUNT"
  • Write 10 things about where you are sitting RIGHT NOW that you hadn't noticed when you sat down. Use your senses. Do it quickly. Do not censor. Okay, begin.
  • WORLD of COLOR: Collect paint chips from a paint or hardware store. Find colors you respond to in the world. Attempt to match them using the chips.
  • CONSUMER: Record everything you consume OR everything you purchase in one day/week.
  • WATER: Study and document shapes made by water. Find as many as you can. Research shapes made by water. come up with new ones.
  • Now I will do nothing but LISTEN. "I hear all sounds running together, combined, fused, or following, sounds of the city, and sounds out of the city - sounds of the day and night. -Walt Whitman. Collect objects based on their sounds.
  • FOOD as ART: Prepare a meal paying close attention to all the details. Document the process in some form. Incorporate ALL the senses in your process. Share the meal with someone.
I also found a nice (and more detailed) post you should check out about the book by GeekDad
    So many ideas...this is a creative, cross-curricula book for parents, educators, and those who just want to notice and appreciate/learn from their environment. I highly recommend it.

    Should Teachers Tweet?

    An editorial in the Mobile, AL Press-Register got my attention Friday: Should Teachers Tweet? 

    This editorial demanded my attention for a multitude of reasons: 
    • I teacher preservice teachers: elementary education majors, as well as inservice teachers: graduate students.
    • I'm a parent and aunt of children in the Mobile County Public School System.
    • I am an avid Tweeter @pvbaggett and proclaim quite often that it is my #1 professional development resource with the disclaimer that it is all in who you follow.
    • This semester I am requiring my students to explore Twitter by registering and at least following me (and others I designated as tweet-worthy). I want our future teachers to walk a mile (or at least a few steps) in the shoes before they judge...which is a practice I personally try to uphold.
    Please read (or re-read) the editiorial and share your thoughts...