Wednesday, September 10, 2014

What's New in My High School Art Room!

So, here I am, half way through the first full week of school.  We started school officially last Thursday.  I haven't finished posting about summer projects, but I wanted to share the new layouts and some new classroom management/organizational techniques I'm using this year.

First is my insanely awesome Facebook bulletin board.  This is actually in the hall way near our cafeteria where everyone can see (high school, elementary, and community memebers).  I am SO proud of this one...and it took forever to choose which Facebook layout to use!  Luckily, I have some really big sheets of white paper that fit perfectly and only need a little bit of cutting so this should be easy to change throughout the school year.   Currently, Van  Gogh is the first artist.  I think the next one will be Mondrian as my Studio Students are learning about him through their bell ringers (which I will post about soon!) and my younger students will learn about Mondrian with the primary colors.

Under the sponsored section, I looked up an old add from the late 1800's and added an excerpt from the book Secret Lives of Great Artists by Elizabeth Lunday.  (I am in love with this book for my high school students!  Great way to get in more reading that isn't super boring!)  I used Picassa to edit and create the photo collages of Van Gogh, his artwork, and his "friends".  

 No onto my high school classroom.  I picked this bins up at my local Big Lots to use as bins for collection and passing back of sketchbooks and projects.  They are bigger than the standard 8 1/2" x 11" paper bins I used last year, which means they will hold all of their different sizes of sketchbooks easily.

I got a new kiln for my high school room!  Well, not really.  The kiln that was in there before was very small...I usually had to fire my high school projects in two firings per project, unlike my elementary kiln that is huge in comparison.  This kiln was purchased about 10 years ago through a grant and has been sitting in storage.  With the gloomy budget we have, they finally decided to give me the new one and sell the old one.  I'm just excited to have a larger kiln!  I also got a new drying rack at the end of the year for the high school room.  The old rack would fall apart every time you tried to lift a shelf.  When purchasing a drying rack, I strongly suggest getting one with springs!

 After last year, students left some projects behind so I can finally decorate this room and make it a little more my own.

I needed to try and figure out how to incorporate the Marzano "I Can..." scale into my high school room.  This is the best way I came up with.  I took those same Mona Lisa faces I use at the elementary end and added some descriptions to them.  These descriptions correspond with my rubrics, which are also 4, 3, 2, 1, and 0.  I figure I can incorporate this scale into my bell ringers/exit slips very easily.

 Ah!  Sharpie organization!  Last year I, ahem, "lost" a lot of Sharpies from the high school room as well as the elementary room.  The top picture shows my new storage idea for elementary.  My lovely hubby drilled 24 holes into a scrap block of wood.  I painted it black, added the color rings around each hole for my tables, and then also added a corresponding colored dot to the cap and marker.  Now, when we use Sharpies, instead of taking them from the box and hoping they all return, each table has their own set of Sharpies that will be easier to keep track of.
The bottom picture is my Sharpie storage in the high school room.  No colored tables there so I added stickers with my room number.  The first block as the fine tip markers (24 of them) and the second block as 12 ultra fine tip and 12 extra fine tip markers.  So far, it's been really easy to make sure I get them all back!  I plan on having him drill me one more block for my X-acto knife storage.

My next post will be about some changes and additions to the elementary room.  I have to say I am SO EXCITED for this school year!  So far, my high school classes are awesome!  All of the students actually want to be there which is great!  My elective, which is officially Sculpture this year, has a total of 14 students in it, which is double the amount from last year. :)


  1. I LOVE your Mona Lisa faces...I was wondering if you would have those saved as images you would be willing to share??? My ES kids would get such a kick out of them!

    1. Sure! I have actually already uploaded them onto the SmARTteacher website. You can find them here: These are just the pictures (which I can't take credit for...don't have Photoshop. Had to do an image search for them.). In my elementary room I just have them printed out, mounted on paper, laminated and hung up. In the high school room, I added those criteria as they are more specific to the rubrics and expectations I have for the high school students.