Making Books with children

Almost at the End of the School Year


Part of what makes working in schools so uniquely challenging and rewarding is that everything must be done within a specified time frame. This is not the way that I am used to making art, but I have to say that this pressure does result in the production of a great deal of work.  No time for processing, at least not yet.  I will mull things over in the coming weeks, and flesh out descriptions of the projects that are pictured here.  The photo above shows the Spinning Flower Book from the previous post, after the children have finished them and the teachers have hung them up for display.  The photo below is what we call a “suitcase book.”  This project needs at least one post of its own:  this photo show the open “suitcase.”  An ambitious project for third graders, each suitcase contains three pockets:  each pocket contains a items such as booklets and postcards which showcase the research each student has done on a country that they are studying.

The photo below of the red fox in the Woodland Biome is one of an extraordinary group of biome books made by second graders.  I am looking forward to writing an expansive post on this project, and writing about this group’s amazing classroom teacher who, year after year, will coax incredibly rich work out of her students as well as out of me.

The Brazil project (teaser photo below) is also waiting to be written about.  I received an email today from the classroom teacher, telling me that the students had finished up the project.  Many teachers that I work with finish the content part of the books after I have worked with the students to create the structure.  I worked with these third graders just two times, though each time I had an hour and a half with them, which is such a pleasure. 

So, here it is, June 7, and I still have two school projects to finish up with.  There have been as many projects this spring that I haven’t as there are projects that I have shown.  I have appreciated having the opportunity to churn out so many projects with students, and I am looking forward to the summer, when things (hopefully) slow down, and I can look over my photographs leisurely.

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