Mrs. Keefe- Brooks


Welcome to Mrs. Keefe’s Awesome ART Adventures Travel Agency! This year grades K-5 will travel back in time (with our own time machine) to explore the many art styles and time periods of art, from as far back as prehistoric times 15 billion years ago (in September) to the modern day (in June).  Each month the students will move forward on the timeline of art history, where there will be many opportunities for them to discover and explore materials in a creative hands-on way.   My goal is to act as consultant and travel guide; introducing art adventures which involve many forms of motivation.  Students will explore many materials and art techniques.  The classroom will be updated each month with motivational and inspirational materials  including: videos, music samples and art examples which relate to the new time period.

color wheel

color wheel

OCTOBER Newsletter from our trip to Prehistoric Times! 15 billion years ago: that is where we set the dials on our time machine. We revved up the engines and with the standard countdown to blastoff, we spent the month of September exploring prehistoric time. We traveled through space, the universe and the solar system as the stardust spread throughout the galaxy. We landed back on Earth to be present during the earliest days of our planet. Some of the students related the experience to the trips that Miss Frizzle takes her students on with the Magic School Bus. And just like “the Frizz”, we use our Artistic License to incorporate the creative arts into the experience of drifting around and eventually landing safely back on Earth. Some of the projects from our Prehistory Trip included: Kindergarten explored some of the basic elements of art: Line, Shape and Pattern. We looked at the book, the Beautiful Oops and made many discoveries with the infinite combinations of lines, shapes and patterns. First grade created giant fish, measuring at least 3 foot long. They explored different sizes and shapes of fish and underwater creatures. Second-grade created their own puppet theaters representing dinosaur land and dinosaur stick puppets. They also learned about making drawings of dinosaurs by combining shapes. Third-grade explored the galaxies with concentric circles and used traditional markers in a nontraditional way with watercolor and mixed-media. Fourth-grade explored space literally and figuratively. They discussed positive shapes and negative spaces and how to show depth in their compositions. They used their imagination to create a brand-new galaxy using oil pastels, watercolor and mixed media. Fifth-grade created their own portfolios to use storing their art for the entire year and began working on marbleizing paper to create a travel journal to log-in important facts and information and take notes during our many adventures. Students noticed that the action of making marbleized paper with suminagashi ink, mimics the swirling motion of the planets as they move through space!

 Space     image

Cave painting     Clay dinosaur

NOVEMBER notes from our recent trip to ANCIENT EGYPT! We set the dials on our time machine to blast back to around 3,000BCE.   Students enjoyed our flight across the Atlantic Ocean.  As our time machine approached Africa we began our descent  and from such a high vantage point they could see the  great Nile River as it meandered through the desert.  We made a safe landing and began to explore the pyramids, the people, the animals, the music, the art, the traditions and even the heiroglyphs. Many students had already been to Egypt (another time machine trip!) so we had many experts to guide our adventures. I will post some photographs from our Egyptian Adventurers at the end of the month!   Until then, here are some photos from our Stone Age trip.  Students explored many caves and ancient dwellings, they also tried their hand in making “paint” with charcoal from a burnt log!  Some students invented the first paint brushes using sticks and bits of dried grass.  Drums, dot painting, masks, and owls were just some of the themes we explored.

.image image image image image image

Here are some photos from our Ancient Egypt trip.

Egyptian Game   pyramids

A note from the teacher: December is a very busy month at school.  So our Time Machine itinerary is very full!  The classroom goals for this adventure will be to Travel back in time to the ancient Greek and Roman days.  Students will wander around observing the architecture, building structures, and see the different types of decorative arts used in functional everyday pieces, decorating and for embellishment of storefronts and pottery.  Roman Mosaics and Greek Vases are some of the ART center tables available to the students.  Students also have access to a bookshelf with special, theme-related books for research and inspiration including books on myths and legends.  The December classroom is outfitted with Winter Wonderland workshop ART center tables for students to construct winter themed items from our huge collection of creative items at the “snoopy supply store”, “recycle center” and “stuff cabinets”.  (Special thanks to everyone for all the donations of recycled materials and craft supplies.) Here are some photos from our Greek and Roman/ Winter Wonderland combination trip.

gingerbread cutter  mosaic tiles  children working on mosaics

ginger bread art   penguin tube art


Happy New Year!!! So far so good, no snow days!  Travel plans (even time machine travel plans) are often delayed postponed or changed completely based on the weather.  I am hoping for clear traveling ahead!  January is a great month for classroom review:  students review the classroom travel objectives and look forward to our trips which will take us closer to “now”. Our travel adventure this month will bring us to what is often called the Middle Age.  A lot has been written about this time period, with attention to castles and kingdoms, so for this adventure we will have a trunkful of reference guide books.  At the beginning of the month we will blast off on a “guided tour bus tour” using the book: “The Magic School Bus Medieval Castle”.  (Note from the teacher:  I figure that most of the students are familiar with Miss Frizzle and she has experience on this adventure, why not use the book as our travel guide?)  The second half of the month students will continue their study of the development of creative inventions, craft and art styles:  including making yarn, needlecraft, weaving, looms, pottery, metalwork, chainmail, iron, blacksmithing, stained glass, using a light box, lettering, and symbolism.

Here are just some of the January photographs from the Middle Ages adventures…more photos soon…

chalk castle   stained glass tissue paper    red crayon dragon     castle building

Below: photos from the classroom:  The Time line and the Time Machine.

time line   time machine 2015

February will be a busy month with the Viva Variety Show at the beginning of the month!

One thought on “Mrs. Keefe- Brooks

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *