Wednesdays are project days this fall...
We are doing a woodblock print project that is a combination history/art/writing project. The woodcut-style stamp Ben is working on will be an illustration to a story Ben is writing about a Panda. Next week we will print the story, illuminate the first letter, and add the woodblock print so the page looks like a page from one of the first books printed in the 1400s.
Ben spent some time sketching a panda from a photo he found on the internet. I was originally going to transfer the design to soft wood and let Ben trace the lines with a pencil... but he was so excited about the idea of carving, that I actually let him use my carving tools and speedy-cut (a soft, stamp carving medium). Before he started carving we talked about the use of positive and negative space and made a couple of test stamps to get the hang of carving and using positive and negative areas.
Here is a picture of Ben carving his block:
This is a picture of Ben's original sketch, the carved block, and the test print:
He did ALL of the carving himself!
We also did a series of physics experiments to explore gravity:
1) We dropped small cups with 1, 20, and 30 pennies in them to see which would land first.
2) Then we dropped a cup with water in it and a huge hole at the bottom to see if the water would pour out before the cup hit the ground.
3) Then, to confuse the student, we dropped a quarter and a piece of paper. Then, to clarify things again, a piece of paper and a crumpled piece of paper.
Then Ben did a series of experiments he designed himself that involved paper airplanes with various numbers of coin passengers.