Sandburg at 60!

I'd like to thank everyone involved with this year's end-of-year art exhibition and birthday celebration for Sandburg's 60th!  Special thanks to everyone (students, families, friends, faculty, staff, and community members) who attended the event!

Unfortunately, my photographer never showed up, so all I had was my camera phone to snap a few quick shots. If you have any photos from the event, please please please email me with them!

Above, students work on decorating cardboard pieces of a "universal" puzzle that will become a mural, which will be installed on the walls of Sandburg Middle School next year!  I can't wait to see how huge it ends up becoming!

The crew at Blick Art Materials in Wheaton ran a demonstration table all about fish printing!  It was super fun to paint these squishy fish shapes with bright colors and press paper onto them.  After peeling away to reveal the results, we added eyes and other fun details.  My brother made me a fish print, and it is currently hanging up outside the art room.  Have you spotted it yet?

Mrs. Draganowski does face painting and body art.  All night she made incredible designs on the faces of students and visitors!  I had fun with the stencils she had out for us to try.  I made a pink and blue unicorn on my arm, and added glitter!

Did you come to the show?  What fun things did you see and do?


Graduation Program Design Contest

Congratulations to Maria, the winner of our 8th grade Graduation Program Cover Design contest!  All 8th grade students are welcome to submit designs, and I choose the finalists.  The winner is chosen by vote from the 8th grade teachers.  This year, there were eight finalists.  You can see all of the finalists' designs on our Artsonia gallery.



Please come to our art show!

"Sandburg at 60" is this year's culminating fine arts event, with dual purposes: 
  1. To celebrate the 60th birthday of Sandburg Middle School
  2. To showcase student achievement and talent in the fine arts

Please come if you can!  Students, families, community members, and alumni are all welcome!  There will be refreshments, art demonstrations, face painting, a community mural that you can participate in, and more!  Festivities will begin at 6:30 pm and continue until 8:30 pm. 

There will be a special performance of the choir, band, and orchestra in the auditorium.  There will also be art exhibits in the cafeteria, library, and hallways.  The crochet coral reef club will be working on their crochet projects in the library, and tours of the building will be available that evening.

Fun for all!


"Art of the Surreal" Contest

Mrs. Bensfield forwarded me this contest opportunity, and it sounded really fun.  Unfortunately, it's for ages 13 and up, so if you're under the age minimum, maybe you could pass this on to a friend or sibling!  I'd love to win a cool contest like this!

Vogue "Art of the Surreal" Contest

You must upload a photo of an original t-shirt graphic, using the surrealistic art style as inspiration (no specific surrealistic artwork may be copied) for your individual fashion design.  The judge will score entries based on the following criteria: creativity (25%), originality (50%), and relation to theme (25%).

There will be one grand prize winner and four runners up. The grand prize is two coach airfare tickets from the major commercial airport nearest winner's primary residence in the US to New York, a two-night hotel stay, a custom screen-printed t-shirt of the winning design, and two VIP tickets to the School of Fashion's Student Fashion Show in Lincoln Center in early September 2011, including backstage access and opportunity to meet student designers!  The runners-up prize is one custom screen-printed t-shirt of each runner-up winner's design/image.


iPod Evolution


Mr. Leban had an idea the other day to line up our iPods, all in a row, and to photograph them.  It's so interesting to see how the iPod has evolved, and to remember when we owned them, and why they were replaced...

iPod names

When I use my iPod mini (yes, it still works and I still use it!) in my classroom, the students laugh at it and call it an antique!  The black and white screen, the heavy metal wrapper... how I loved this when it was new!  I bought it for myself as a birthday present.  Not too long after, the first iPod nano came out, Mr. Leban bought it for me the following birthday.

iPods 1

The original iPod and iPod video are both Mr. Leban's.  I remember how impressed I was when I first saw how the iPod video worked.  Amazing how fast the technology progresses... it was only a little over five years ago!

iPods 2

When our house finally decided to make the transition from PCs to Macs, we encountered (what we considered to be) a fantastic deal: a free iPod touch with the purchase of my new Mac book!  We bought an additional iPod touch (so we each had one), but they were the first generation models. Once the second generation touches came out, it was near impossible to find a new case for the old ones, which was pretty frustrating.

Another fun fact is that the iPod touch did not originally come with the ability to download apps, and it was a system update that you had to purchase for $9.99 when the app store first opened up!

iPods 3

Mr. Leban won an iPod shuffle at a tech conference we went to a few months back.  The most fun part about this model is a button you can press, and a little computer voice tells you the name of the song and the band.  We like to try to pick obscure band names to see if it works right, but so far, it has!  The best we've gotten are some mispronunciations, which are still pretty funny.

And just a few weeks ago, Mr. Leban decided to upgrade his old first gen iPod touch to a current model.  Now, the question is, what do we do with all of these old ones?  What do you do with your old technology?


Clay Days!

This week and last week, we had pottery wheel days in 8th grade.  We had to work in shifts, since we only have 8 wheels total, but each student gets to have a whole class period to work on the wheel. 

Working on the pottery wheel is hard!  I tell students that it's okay to NOT end up with a finished pot!  If they end up making a little something, that's fine, but it's not a requirement.  I am not a trained ceramicist, so I had a bit of a struggle to learn how to properly use the wheel.  In fact, it took me the whole school year to get the hang of it!  I made sure to share this fact with students, so they would not feel bad if they struggled, too.

Once you DO get the hang of it, it's really fun.  Mr. Gail and Ms. Read even joined us last Friday to try to throw some clay!  It was pretty cool to see them get their hands dirty with us!


A Present!

Maria, one of my 6th graders, surprised me last week with a belated birthday present.  A Where The Wild Things Are tote bag!  How awesome!  I told her that I'd have to use it when I wear my t-shirt that has a picture of Max on it that says "I have a WILD imagination!"

It's so sweet that students remember my birthday, and that someone found such a cute little gift to match the theme of our 6th grade art project!
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