Year of the Forest

Term: 3 Year: 2012

The Year of the Forest for 2011 sparked many ideas for the Visual Art program, especially since Victoria was still recovering from the devastation on 2009 Black Saturday, of families, forests and homes.

All students in the school were involved in the creation of a forest mural which combined photos, names and handprints of each child.

The Year 3 and 4 students sketched the trees in our schoolyard, water coloured them and then made an outline of their tree on either a flat slab of white earthenware or made a free standing model of a tree. Decoration was applied using wooden tools and sgraffito tools. Extra clay was applied to add features such as cubby houses, nests or tree creatures. The students then used coloured underglazes to complete their decoration. 

The year 5 and 6 students developed the theme universally by observing and discussing homes around the world and how different architects have catered for the needs of families and communities, such as Frank Lloyd Wright, Hundertwasser and Boyd. The students then drew simple house designs and then transferred them onto white earthenware clay slabs.  The houses needed to be self- supporting, coloured, textured surfaces and a removable roof so that the sculpture could be used around a container. Each house had a unique design with a variety of styles including a round stick hut, a pyramid, a Japanese temple and even a castle.

Carmel McGrath
Visual Arts Teacher
St Bede's Primary School, Balwyn North
Suitable for Levels 3-4