Sometimes I get a little frustrated to hear people tell me they can’t even draw a straight line because if I want to draw a straight line I will usually get out a ruler and use it as a straight edge.  In the 5th grade I encourage students that their drawings should be about getting your ideas and thoughts down on paper, but that maybe instead of drawing a stick figure they could try a shape figure using rectangles, circles squares and triangles. I stress that they need to help me visualize their idea, so that I can better assist them.  My students will often ask me how long I’ve been drawing and I tell them all my life.  I used to draw on everything, walls, car ceilings, the dirt, you name it and I was probably drawing on it but I didn’t magically wake up one morning and know how to draw.  Practice, practice will help win video games.  Practice will provide skills to win the soccer match.  Practice will make someone a better drawer.

In my fifth grade classes we begin with contour drawings and focus on shapes both organic and geometric.  They use markers, crayons and pens to make marks closer together to create darker values and farther apart to create lighter values.  We also discuss making marks to create textures.

I cover a new drawing material each year which builds on the previous years courses and each year I see students skills grow. I’ve been very pleased to see even the posters in the hall improve with more observance of shapes, shading, and textures.

7th Grade Grid Drawing

8th Grade Charcoal Drawing