West Plains 4th Grade ArtStream, 2007 Fall Session
"Prairies, Plants and Prints"
Braided grass wishbone
Six classrooms of fourth grade students at West Plains Elementary School along with their classroom teachers and art teachers participated in an ArtStream project called “Prairies + Plants = Prints”. The project began with local artist, Pat Hight, teaching each class of 24 to 25 students a lesson on Nature Journaling. Art teachers, Kathy Grigsby and Dee Watkins, then took their art classes outside to experience outdoor drawing on the school grounds. Classroom teachers including; Cindy Rasor, Tracy Waggoner, Jodi Ficken, Gina Gobel, Angela Phipps, and Julie Ostermann taught lessons on prairies.
On a fieldtrip to Tingler Prairie, students took a hike and drew in their nature journals. Rhonda Rimer from the Missouri Department of Conservation spent time teaching each class. Students learned to identify several prairie plants including; big blue stem, little blue stem, Indian grass, wild sage, sumac and several forbs. The students especially enjoyed playing a hide and seek game in the tall grass. Following the fieldtrip, students chose one drawing to use for a linoleum block print. Pat Hight taught each class how to do linoleum block printing, from carving the blocks to the actual printing. Students printed their blocks in not only black ink, but also colored ink. Printing in color seemed to make the printing process lighter, provided more choices and more fun. Student comments included:
“Out of all the fieldtrips it (Tingler Prairie) was my favorite.” (Cori)
“What I liked most about this project is the linoleum, it was very hard to cut with the tools, but soon paid off. Block printing is fun!” (Isaac)
“I liked the trip to Tingler Prairie because we got to look at many different plants like sumac and others.” (Joseph)
“I liked Tingler Prairie because we learned about new plants and what animal tracks look like.” (Hunter)
“I liked the linoleum block printing, Tingler fieldtrip and the printing with the ink.” (Whitney)
“What I liked about block printing is we get messy. Printing is fun!” (Destiny)
“The best part was when we did the block printing. When we did the printing, it looked so real.” (Jenna)
Partial funding for this program in 2007 was provided by the Coover Regional Grantmaking Program, in partnership with the Community Foundation of the Ozarks. Further support for this ArtStream Program was received from the Community Foundation of West Plains