Sunday, October 6, 2013

Art Uniquely Theirs: Displaying Self-Portraits in the Classroom

With common core, demanding schedules, and everything in between, it is easy to forget about making time for art lessons. I'm not talking cutting, pasting, and following step-by-step directions, but students creating something all their own with no lines to follow, no pattern to cut, and no {well, some} rules.

Two years ago, I taught an after school art class in addition to teaching 1st and 2nd graders and fell in love with teaching art! I'm excited to share with my blog readers some of the way I use art in my classroom!

At the beginning of each school year, I have my students make a self=portrait. This year, the students and I read picture books about being unique and we learned about what it meant to have a strong self-concept. We discussed how no two students looked and acted exactly the same and to celebrate this, we are going to create self-portraits to display in the classroom community.

By giving the art a specific purpose, this insured students would take their art seriously and try their very best. I hope you can agree that my sweet second graders' artwork turned out beautifully!

I brought out the mirrors and my students brought out their smiles! I showed students on my ELMO how to draw a self portrait by drawing "whisper lines" and by carefully placing your eyes, nose, and mouth. I modeled how to take our time and how if we use light lines, it is easier to erase. 

The next day, students colored their self-portraits with water colors. I gave students a lesson on how to mix colors to crate a tan and how to not mix the colors together. 

Once the paint had dried, we used permanent marker to outline their self-portraits. Again, I modeled how to do this very carefully and explained how important it is to be careful because one wrong move could ruin our portraits. 

My mom and I worked together to frame their pictures using Dollar Tree frames. The space above their cubbies made a perfect shelf to permanently display their artwork on! Everyone in the class has their very own framed piece of art! 

Here's a look at all the artwork that I was able to capture without the pesky glare! There are more portraits that aren't pictured.

Looking at these just make me smile! You can see their little personalities in their artwork! I just love it! The pictures at a home-like feel to the classroom. It was amazing to see how much warmth their artwork added to our classroom. 

If you have students' self-portraits displayed in you classroom, please comment with the link. I would love to see pictures!

How do you display student artwork in your classroom?



  1. So cute!!!! I love that you framed each of their pictures!! I have a parent come in each Friday morning, specifically for art projects. This has forced me to come up with something that aligns our CCSS and literacy units, which isn't always easy.


    1. Try When I taught art, I found a ton of CCSS aligned art projects displayed on this site.


  2. I love these! Here is a collection of last year's self-portraits from the primary hall-
    Chickadee Jubilee

    1. Thank you for sharing! Your school's artwork is so sweet! I love that the entire K-3 wing participated!


  3. This particular is usually apparently essential and moreover outstanding truth along with for sure fair-minded and moreover admittedly useful My business is looking to find in advance designed for this specific useful stuffs… Art prints posters


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