Grade 3 Colour

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Grade 3 have been investigating colour. We will be digging deeper into how artists use colour in their works and how we can be more creative and varied in our own use of colour as grade 3 artists. Learning some colour theory is a good place to start. Being able to mix a large variety of tints and shapes of any colour helps us to vary how we use colours in our paintings. These shape painting also helped grade 3 students to focus on brush control and painting techniques.

Bower Bird Sculpture

Grade three students have been busy at home being Bower Birds. This Australian bird is a very creative species. The male collects colourful objects to decorate his already well sculpted nest to attract a mate. Grade three students have been collecting and sorting objects of different colous and painting those they think are neutral; grey, beige, black or white. You can help at home by looking for objects that are colouful and interesting. We are avoiding kitchen items as we want the colour and shapes to be really appealing to look at so our Bower Bird Sculpture looks awesome!

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Do you know your colours?

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Grade 3 Students have been investigating how to mix colours. We shared what we knew already about colour theory but this brought up a lot of questions like, What is a primary colour? How do you make blue? What happens when you mix secondary colours together? and are black and white colours?

Children investgated their question in pairs and groups and using the knowledge they created huge colour paintings that we will be using to make some really cool and colourful art work in the next few weeks.

Grade three have also been working on adding white and black to colours to create tints and shades. Using careful brush control they created a continuous lines and filled in all the shapes with a variety of tints and shades.

Colour Sculptures

So just like the Bower birds the kids went off in search of colours. We decided to make a sculpture with all the tints and shades of primary and secondary colours that we found and painted. It is amazing how imaginitive the children are when presented with what others might view as a load of old junk. A lot of sculptures had a theme or a story – a city, a race car, a theme park. They put them together using glue guns and we are still deciding how to display them. All grade 3 classes I teach wanted to put all the sculptures from these classes together to make one big work. They also liked the idea of displaying it in the CMC or the cafeteria. We have two ideas – one is a huge colour wheel and the other a long piece that will hang from the ceiling. Watch this space…..


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Tints and shades

Expanding on the children’s understanding of color we have been trying to make as many different tints and shades of colors as we can by adding back and white.  AJ said that we could mix a billion different colors and we certainly tried. We  have been using these colors to create some kind of sculpture with all the great things that were brought in from home. The art work is based around the idea of the bower bird. The bower bird is native to Australia and likes to collect colored objects to decorate his nest to attract a mate. He makes a stunning job as you can see – certainly attracted grade 3!







Whilst painting our objects we also made some giant tint and shade posters which we will use later for another project. They really show the amount of tints and shades the kids were able to make – I didn’t count but maybe there where a billion!

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Color Investigations

Grade 3 are going to begin some painting projects over the next few weeks. In order to paint really well we need to understand color. This is something that the children in ES look at each year and the kids in every grade love to simply investigate color. The aim of the first lesson was to find out what the kids already knew about mixing colors and also what they still wanted to find out. We made some amazing colors and, amongst other things, found out that it was really quite impossible to make blue and yellow and red – apparently these colors are special – and with them we can create a lot of other colors.

We also got into some very interesting discussions about how color is “made”, how we see color and how light effects the colors that we see. Another conversation was why in a printer the primary colors are magenta, cyan and yellow and in painting it is red, yellow and blue. Color theory really is quite complicated – if you want to learn more have a look at the blog bellow:

The ability to question and to use ones findings in their work is an essential skill for an artist. The photos go some way to show you how much fun the kids had with it.


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