This project was designed to develop children’s painting and drawing skills as well as critiquing and redrafting skills. We started with a visit to the National Gallery in London and looking at a variety of artworks. We then explored how to use colours and textures when painting. The children read a story called Beegu and created an artwork using different colours and textures to represent the feelings in the story.
As a new school and new in my role as Project-Based Learning leader this project was a chance to really develop the children’s core skills of critiquing and redrafting. We felt it was important to begin our project with discussions and questions about various artworks so children could explore what they liked about art and how to talk about a work of art. This was a crucial stage as it allowed them to develop reasons for their own choices in their work. Our main dilemma was how to get children so young to produce something beautiful and thoughtful and we hoped this would come through critiquing and redrafting. We taught the children the three rules of critique, which they found easy to recall and put into practise. It was great watching the children feedback their ideas to each other and improve their work from that feedback with each draft. The final products were beautiful and each child could explain their choices and reasoning behind their artwork.
I enjoyed going to the art gallery because when I looked at the paintings they were better than mine. The feelings I chose from Beegu was when she was tired with the puppies—I liked that part. I used green and blue splats in my first draft because they were confused colours. On my second draft I didn’t do the same. I filled all of the gaps—that’s what my partner wrote. I agreed with my partner and was interested in what she said. She helped me do it neater on my third draft because my second draft is not as neat. I didn’t mind the critiquing. I’ve learnt how to paint more carefully.
—Noah (age five)