Friday, December 6, 2013


In Kindergarten, we are learning that art can tell a story. In this video, we used a story by Eric Carle, "The Artist who Painted a Blue Horse," and added our own images and our own words.

For this painting project, Kindergartners learned how to use a big brush to mix colors directly on the page and a smaller brush to create the fine details of the background scenes. We also practiced our cutting skills by tracing the shape of our favorite animals and cutting them out of our painted papers to create our final collages. All of our paintings in this video are presented by the Kindergarten artists at Ranney School, Class of 2026. The video was created on the iPad, using the iMovie app. Enjoy!

SECOND GRADE . . . The Architecture of Ranney School

Second graders are creating illustrations of Ranney School in the winter. Inspired by the artwork of Norman Rockwell (1894-1978), we saw how the amazing details of Rockwell's scenes helps to capture our interest and tells us a story about life in 20th century America. The image above is a street scene of Stockbridge, Massachusetts, the town where he lived. Norman Rockwell not only included the buildings on Main Street in Stockbridge, but he filled his painting with people and cars passing by to give us a feeling of life in the town. We can also tell it takes place during December by the Christmas decorations on the buildings, the bare trees outside, and the snow on the ground.

The Lower School Academic Complex
Looking at digital images of the buildings on our Ranney School campus, we noticed how many of our buildings have the same architectural style. Most start off with a rectangle and although some of the buildings have a flat topped roof, there is usually a triangle above the entrances to the buildings. Starting simple by drawing each structure with rectangles and triangles, and then adding all the special details, such as the windows and the columns, we were able to draw very recognizable buildings for our "street scene."
Artwork by Brooke 
Artwork by Anna
Artwork by Eric


Our Ranney campus would not be complete without trees, flag poles, school buses and kids playing on the grass. These are the details that make our scenes special and very much like a Norman Rockwell illustration. To color in our composition of Ranney School buildings on the page, we will add color by blending different shades of colored pencil over the pencil drawings as Eric started to do.

Note to families...
This art blog will be updated regularly with new posts sharing our daily activities in the art room and news about upcoming art exhibits. To respect the privacy of our students, names will always be limited to first name only and identifiable photos will never be accompanied with a name. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to write in the comment box below or send me an email at I would love to hear from you!
    In my class, students are given the chance to explore different materials and fun new techniques as they develop their signature style. Some young artists love to draw with a pencil, some like to paint on canvas or create images in a digital format, while others prefer working with clay and molding three-dimensional forms. In my classroom, we use a variety of materials allowing all artists to experiment and figure out which type of art they like the best. At Ranney School, we place a strong emphasis on originality and celebrate artistic differences, always nurturing and encouraging the imagination of every student.
     Remember to check out our display of finished artwork and student portfolios in the Ranney home page of