Friday, August 20, 2010

The Friday Five

This week, I had the opportunity to teach a children's class at the museum. I had a group of six 11 to 13 year old girls. The class was the Art, Culture, and Language of Ireland. We learned to write an Uncial script (used in the 6th c.) with dip pen and ink, learned to draw knotwork, animals, decorated initials and a few words and phrases in the Irish. Five reasons why I had a good time:

1. After a brief shy period, the girls warmed up and there was chatter in the class while we worked. (The evening adult classes are very, very quiet as most of the adults are coming from a long day of work. They just want a chance to chillax.)

2. Each day we visited something in the gallery, talked about it, and then went back to the studio to work what we had seen into our artwork. We were in one of the Medieval Galleries looking at a Frankish belt buckle that had knotwork etched in the metal. Before we left, I told the girls to look up at the ceiling which was a highly decorated beamed ceiling. I've seen the ceiling a million times and for the first time, I noticed a design that looked like a King Solomon's knot, which was one of the knots we were learning how to draw!

3. I love the willingness of the kids to try. Sometimes when you ask adult students to try something, there's a lot of negative feedback. I can't. I'm not good enough. The girls just jumped right in. Didn't second guess what they were doing. They were very pleased and happy with their efforts. I wonder as adults when we lose that spontaneity?

4. We had a couple of accidents with a little spilled ink on the table. We had fun trying to see what picture we could find in the blot. Rorschach would have been pleased.

5. The best part was introducing these girls to a dip pen and ink. Most had never seen or used a broad-edge pen. They all picked up the alphabet quite quickly and did a wonderful job in such a short time frame. Maybe instead of doing their report covers on the computer, they'll decorate their covers by hand.

Did you have a fun week?


  1. my week flew by all too quickly!

    Do you think we lose our spontenaity when we start comparing our work to others for better or worse?

    Yay that you had a great week with the kidlets!

  2. Sounds like such a fun class. I agree with you on it being fun to be around that age. They love to chatter, and it brings me back to when I was younger. Very cool!

  3. Awesome for you!!!! I'm so excited for you. I'm not going to start on my week. You probably had AC.