Tuesday, September 25, 2012


My sixth grade classes average about 38 students each. But still, we conquer paper mache'! The students do well with this, as they love to get their hands in things. In keeping with the cross-curricular nature of art, we study Central and South America in sixth grade. Alebrijes (al-uh-bree-hayes) are Mexican folklore creatures that were inspired by Pedro Linares. This image below is of Pedro Linares (from www.mexican-folk-art-guide.com). The images came to him when he was dilusional from a high fever.

Pedro Linares

The students will make theirs smaller, approximately 2' tall. They are to make an armature out of cardboard, tubes, egg containers, wire, newspaper, and other found materials. They will be paper mached with 3-4 layers, painted with house paints (water based) or acrylic paints, and then detailed. A prime characteristic of this type of art is the attention to brightly colored details.  The students can also add material, tissue paper, yarn, and the like. The students write a paragraph or two explaining their creatures and then must present this to the class. This brings in a wonderful aspect of creative writing into the Visual Arts room and also gets them thinking further about their own ideas. The questions below are prompts to get them thinking:

1)       What is it made out of?
2)       Why did you choose the color?
3)       What is his name?
4)       Where does he live?
5)       What kind of climate is he from?
6)       Who are his enemies?
7)       What does he feel like? Furry, scaly, smooth, etc?
8)       Tell us a story about him.
9)       Are there others like him?
10)    What does he like to eat?
11)    What does he NOT like to eat?
12)  Anything else that you can think of that you can tell us about him??

Pictures coming soon!

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