Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Open Studio Collaborative Problem Solvers and Makers



Often in the Art Studio, when students are done with their structured lesson time they pull out blocks or play dough.  These two  3-D materials seem to spark kids imaginations  and force them to problem solve on the spot, without them even realizing they are problem solving.  Below are some images of structures, environments, animals,  foods and fabulous creations by students across the grades.

One of the things I find so fascinating and wonderful is that these materials also bring out kids collaborative nature and they tend to work and play collaboratively when these materials are out.    In this digital age where kids are so drawn to screen time its refreshing when we all are getting messy with blocks and play dough and digging deep into our creative brains.
 For example, today while kids were building with blocks I witnessed a team of kids working on a physics problem, trying to balance blocks of varying sizes against a large piece of board.  Other students created their own game with play dough; they split themselves into groups of 3 and each group pretended they were chefs and created foods that the other team had to guess.
Honoring this unstructured time and letting kids feel empowered during it is something that I am attempting to embed into our studio time on a regular basis this year.  It feels like a win win for us all.  Enjoy some photos below from various different recent classes.

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