Los Dias de Los Muertos or The Day of the Dead

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Los Dias de Los Muertos,  or the Days of the Dead is a highly celebrated holiday in Mexico.  Mexicans do not view the dead, or symbols of the dead as somber or frightening,  as many people in the United States do.  Rather,  they believe in a happy or joyous after-life and they believe that on the Days of the Dead,  their departed loved ones return for a visit.  They welcome and honor them.  They love to decorate with skeletons and often make things such as bread,  candy,  and toys in that look like skeletons.

In this project,  the 2nd graders used Crayola Air Dry Clay to make their own skeletons and then they decorated them as they learned about this fun Mexican tradition.

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The Wild Beast???

The first artist we have studied this year is Henri Matisse. He was born on New Year’s Eve in 1869, almost 144 years ago!!
Henri’s dad wanted him to become a lawyer but when Henri was 20 years old he got very sick and had to stay in bed for almost an entire year. To keep him from getting bored, his mom bought him some art supplies. That is when he decided he wanted to become an artist instead of a lawyer.
Henri originally liked to paint. He didn’t worry about making his artwork look realistic, which was kind of unusual back them. In fact, one of his paintings called “The Woman in the Hat” had a blue and green face! Imagine that!! Because of this, people started calling him the nickname The Wild Beast. He also liked to wear a crazy big brown fur coat that made him look like a bear, so they called him the Wild Beast because of that too. One of our favorite paintings we studied this year was called “The Goldfish” which we had fun making our own paintings of. This is what Henri’s picture looked like:

Mr. Matisse loved to do paper cut outs (gouaches découpés) in his later years. One of our favorites was called “Sorrow of the King” which had 3 musicians in it. Can you find the 3 musicians?

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We have really enjoyed learning about Henri Matisse and e hope we have taught you about him too!

Greetings and Welcome Back!!!

Well, I am FINALLY back to the blog after a short summer and a medical leave of absence. Where shall I begin? I had a fabulous summer with lots of camping, relaxing, and time with my amazing grandson, Mason. I was so happy to get back to school, only to learn that I needed foot surgery. This was to be a quick 2 weeks off but as the foot situation started to improve, I found out that I needed my gall bladder removed. Finally, and thankfully after 4 weeks, I am able to return to school. I have SO missed my little kiddos and am happy to be back in the classroom which I love. I am truly blessed to have such wonderful job and I get to work with such a terrific bunch of people, both big and small. I am looking forward to another year of blogging (and bragging) about my little artists. Thanks for joining us!!!