We focused on Alexander Calder for art class (at home) recently and had a really good time. They loved working with wire and I had some in a small enough gauge that the girls could sculpt with it without hurting their hands. I used the same book in this post, it's my go to book for art projects and learning about artists. I have posted quite a few of our projects and try to make sure they are all in the Learning category on the blog, so you can see them all. I need to go back and add some more probably.
Earlier in the week I had them look at Calder artwork, we read about him from a few books and watched an animated biography about him I got from the library, Alexander Calder (Getting to Know the World's Greatest Artists). This is a great series by Mike Venezia, for not only artists but presidents and scientists, too. They are short and fun—good for the younger kids.
To make these, they drew pictures and twisted the wire flat on the paper and either stuck it into styrofoam blocks or wood blocks we drilled tiny holes into. The cut out paper elements add wonderful movement. The kitty is ridiculously cute and modern at the same time—it cracks me up.
I have learned that this all goes so much better if I do a art project, too. I don't usually finish it, and that's fine. Working along side them and being able to stop and help them is perfect. It keeps me busy and quiet so I can leave them alone and not suggest too much. And it's fun, of course.