Collage and Amy Van Luijk

The week before we hosted the Whole Schools Initiative Winter Retreat at my school, I realized we needed something to hang on the bulletin board in the foyer by our school entrance. There's a ton of artwork in our foyer already. That is probably why I'd forgotten how old the artwork on that bulletin board actually was. I panicked only a small amount before hitting Pinterest.

I like to come up with my own projects for my students. It is part of what I think is fun about my job. So, I don't usually do a lot of projects that I see on Pinterest. Well, at least when I do, I try to tweak them somewhat so it doesn't feel like we are just copying other classrooms/teachers. 

Anyway, I do have several boards on Pinterest where I pin things that I might like to make a project out of one day. When I am pinning, I'll say to myself, "I smell a children's art project." Then, I'll laugh because I think I am funny.

So, I'd pinned a lovely pin and ran across it as I started trying to figure out what I could do for that bulletin board. The pin led me to the Tumblr of Amy Van Luijk. It is wonderful. You should be checking it out right now!

I was able to quickly pull some scrap papers for the project below. I showed my fifth graders Van Luijk's website, which is also wonderful and you should check it out right now. 

I've been teaching these fifth graders for at least four years. My school is a 2-5 school. So, I told them to use what they have learned about composition to create a collage. 

It took about 45 minutes (one class period) for them to assemble these. They are about around 12x12 inches. The silver is poster board. We'd had an event at school that used that bright paper, and I'd saved the scraps. The other papers were from a tub I keep with cool scraps of paper. The bulletin board has that cool black and white fabric on it. I think these really pop with that background. These were fun, and the kids enjoyed naming their work. You can see a photo of one with the word "Fashion" by it. That is what the student had decided to name his work. Other names were things like "Circleooska" and "Biohazard." Of course, because I believe everything in the school should provide an opportunity to learn, I put those printouts about Van Luijk and the vocabulary with the artwork. 

This was super fast and easy. I recommend it for mini-lessons or when you need something produced quickly. If you get in a pinch, like I did, you'll be glad you had this kind of lesson in your arsenal! 

Yes, that is Elvis Presley in the background.
We have an Elvis display at my school because it is the school he attended.
I know you are now very impressed! HA! 

What quick, emergency-type projects do you keep at the ready? I'm always curious to hear from you!

OH! And I'll throw this out there just in case...

If you know Van Luijk, I'd love to meet her! Send her my contact info!!! Y'all know how I love to meet people! 😍