It was a real pleasure watching them work through the difficulties of painting them. For one thing, they're balanced on bamboo skewers stuck into styrofoam so it's a 2-handed job: one hand to paint and the other the steady their wobbly fungi. The crumpled and twisted paper bags do not present the usual smooth surface, so angles had to be considered. And then there was the usual challenges of sharing "canvases" and paint cups.
I'm planning to let the kids keep creating them next week, with a goal of at least 100, but I'll bet we wind up with more.
To be honest, we started this last week simply because it looked like a fun art project that would look good in our Little World, but the more I've learned about artist Doug Rhodehamel and his "Spore Project," (an effort intended to "raise awareness about art education and creativity in day-to-day life") the more excited I've become, especially since the kids seem to be getting into it. Next week we'll be looking at pictures of other mushroom installations and each of our classes will get to use the full collection to make their own group art project.
I think they'll look wonderful in Little World, but I'm also hoping that at least one of the groups decides to plant theirs in our new coffee bean "pea gravel", donated by our friends at Upcycle Northwest:
I also think it would be fun to take them up to our neighborhood playground and create an installation in the grass:
I can imagine our Pre-K kids plotting out a pattern on paper in the classroom, then executing it in real life. These beauties won't do well in the rain, so I hope the sunny weather forecasts for the latter part of the week come to pass.
If you're thinking of making your own Spring time Spore Project installation, here are Doug's step-by-step instructions.