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Action Jackson Paper Making

Taking on a big project like this is always a little overwhelming during the beginning of the school year(but sometimes its nice to get these intense prepping projects out of the way if you know what I mean). I love teaching my 4th graders about paper making and why not incorporate a little action Jackson into it! And its definitely best to do this project before the snow hits the ground. ​On the first day of this project I introduce the kids to Jackson Pollock and we watch a youtube of him at work. Of course we have to have a great conversation about what he has hanging out of his mouth. Thank you Jackson Pollock for providing great opportunity to discuss the dangers of smoking.

After I introduce good old Jackson I then do a demonstration of the paper making process. I always pre-make the pulp using recycled white paper in the classroom (I find that my blenders have a tendency to over heat and start to smoke during this process, but I just love pushing them to their limits). I would love for the students to get to be apart of this process (mostly because it would be a lot less work for me) but their is just not enough time in the day. For the action painting portion of the process I use the recycled table paper to get colored pulp(when blending this you may find yourself having a sudden urge for slurpies). On day 2 student partner up to make their own paper. We go outside in our courtyard to contain some of the mess. At each station I have this process visual to help them remember how to put their paper dip together and all of the different steps. Student then take turns making their own paper.

​When they get to the action part of the process I try to have them focus on a certain feeling maybe how they are feeling that day and use colors and movements to represent those feelings.

I have student make paper for two days so each student ends up with two pieces of paper. On the 4th day student choose a piece to write about and mount to be displayed in the hallways and on our Artsonia art gallery. Next year I would love to have students do a more sculptural piece using their paper or maybe even book making. If you have any ideas I would love to hear them. I would also love to introduce some paper making artist to my students if you know of any?

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