Wednesday, 12 February 2014

3D Art and the Art of verbs : Stage Two

3D Art , a technique to use at different stages of target language learning

Here we are considering 3D Art as a way to explore present verbs with primary age children  .
I may use the same technique to explore adjectives or a range of tenses with more advanced KS3  learners 

I have always loved to link language learning and drama and find the primary classroom a place where we can explore both these aspects and be really creative !
I love to use Art as stimulus for great drama and language explorations and find that I can bring Art from the target language country to life through simple activities .
I call this work "3D Art", taking a piece of Art and imagining and bringing the characters to life through performance and use of simple target language.

Simple rules 
Select Art that has conversation and interaction running throughout the storyline of the picture .
Make sure there are enough characters for a group of six children to be able to select characters that they want to investigate
Set the scene by investigating as a class possible phrases in the target language that characters could be saying 
Practise voices that the characters might have 
Add actions to the characters and ask the children to think of signature actions for the characters.
Divide your class into mixed ability groups of six children maximum and make sure in each group you have a strong linguist and strong performers 
As you progress through the stages described below increase the amount of reference sources the children can use , so they can access powerful verbs and adjectives etc.

First you need your picture 
Here is one of my favourites : the Boating Party by Renoir 

The Boating Party Renoir

Stage Two : A Virtual Gallery- asking and answering questions

You will need three or maybe four lessons to complete this properly 

I like to revisit the same picture with the children as they progress in their language learning and confidence . They can see how much more they are capable of achieving and also we are building a soap opera based on the characters we are getting to know in the picture . 

1.Children need to be in groups of 4 or 6 as every child needs a partner for these activities . Mix up the groups maybe and change who is in the group .
2. Revisit the painting and ask the children to remember who they were last time and can they remember the character they created . If you made the sugar paper painting book then take a look through - you could share on the IWB so it's more visible etc
3. The children are going to develop conversations in pairs between two characters in the picture. They can recreate their characters and do not necessarily have to use the same personal information as last time
4. As last time the children need to take the pose of one of the characters , use props to support their characterisation and create their painting in their picture frame 
5. Now they need to look around their painting and see who it is the characters are most likely to hold a conversation with. I encourage the children to let the artist guide them - e.g. where is the character and in which direction is the character looking etc .
6.In pairs, the children are to create their conversations .They can use rough paper to make notes if they need to and they should use as many questions and answers as they can e.g at this second stage of learning our Y4 children can ask names, age , where someone lives , how they are feeling ,birthdays , likes , dislikes of food / animals/ colours 
7.The pairs must step back into the picture frame and find a way to walk toward each other , greet each other - all as if they are in the painting so they may have to walk around an imaginary table that they can see in the painting or get up from a chair etc .Working in partnership thinking of their own characters voice , actions and props , the pairs develop their conversations and work out how to support each other to remember the conversation in the appropriate order and act out their characterisations at the same time! This is not just question answer , question answer etc. It needs to be dramatic and dynamic!
8. Once the teacher feels the class is ready to perform , the teacher should organise the children in their seats and the first group should come forward to the front of the class. This is the "picture frame area" in your virtual gallery classroom now  . Even better, if on your IWB you can bring up the picture and a picture frame too ! With an imaginary computer mouse the teacher will hover over a person and that person in the painting must move to meet their partner and start up their conversation . The class listens and watches the animated conversation of the two characters. The teacher will do this three times if there are three partnerships in the painting.
9. Swap groups and repeat point "8" with a new group . 
10 . You may like to film the groups and then play it back on the IWB at a later date for the class- perhaps prior to the written activity connected to stage two 
10 . Give each partnership a piece of plain paper and ask them to either draw a still life  of the two characters in conversation or a cartoon of the two characters in conversation
11. The children should write out their conversation and attach this to the picture they have drawn of their characters . It will be a piece of work using first and second person singular present tense questions and answers.
12. Scan the pictures and record the children speaking their conversations and now you have your own virtual gallery - where you can look at a picture and hear the sound file bring characters from the picture to life!

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