The book Twilight Comes Twice by Ralph Fletcher, illustrated by Kate Kiesler is a wonderful book to use in conjunction with our Clouds and Skies Pinterest Board (found here).
This book, through eloquent text and lush paintings, explores the magic of dusk and dawn. Fletcher’s text is simple and accessible to children, yet rich in its imagery:
“With invisible arms
dawn erases the stars
from the blackboard of night.
Soon just the moon
and a few stars
The illustrations are equally appealing. The pages depict common daily activities such as early morning walks, streetlights flickering off and spiders rousing themselves from the night. The colors are calming; yet evoke all the senses as we remember the special time that passes ever so briefly each day. Use the images provided on Pinterest to compare and contrast with the words and images in the book.
Illustration from Cloud Dance by Thomas Locker
“The sky settles everything – not only climates and seasons but when the earth shall be beautiful.”
E.M. Forster, A Passage to India
The background of a painting is much like a setting in writing: it pulls you in, and puts you somewhere specific. We tell our students that “setting” is the time and place in a piece of writing. But it is more than that: it is an anchor for the reader. I like teaching setting by focusing on the sky. The sky is a great equalizer: we all see it, at all times of day and night, in all kinds of weather. It affects our moods and our actions. The collection of paintings selected by Sara Torkelson in this pinterest board are a perfect way to show students of all ages how powerful the sky can be.
Continue reading Sky Lessons: Using Paintings to Teach Setting
“Blue needs sun,
sparkling spring sky!”
-Joyce Sidman, Excerpt from Red Sings from Treetops, A Year in Colors
Check out our newest Pinterest post about Clouds and Skies here! This is just a small sample of the many works that showcase the natural world around us. Check out the clouds and skies using our online collection here and here. There are various options for using these works in the classroom; stay tuned to our blog to see how other teachers have used our collection of clouds and skies at the YCBA in their classrooms. How will you use these artistic expressions of nature? Share with us your own ideas about Clouds and Skies in the classroom.
Here are some books for all ages that can easily accompany one of the Pinterest posts:
Birds, Kevin Henkes. Illustrated by Laura Dronzek.
Little Cloud, Eric Carle.
Red Sings from Treetops: A Year in Colors, Joyce Sidman. Illustrated by Pamela Zagarenski.
Once Upon a Cloud, Rob D. Walker. Illustrated by Matt Mahurin.
It Looked Like Spilt Milk, Charles G. Shaw.
The Yale Center for British Art has a vast collection of animal paintings, which you can easily access from the YCBA “animal art” collection search or view highlights here on our new “Animals in Art” Pinterest board. The YCBA also offers a guided tour with an “Animals in Art” theme where students will explore the many different ways and reasons animals are portrayed in art. By identifying and evaluating facial expressions, gestures, and other details, students practice observing details, describing what they see, and drawing conclusions. Look for more posts as we continue to share our vast collection with the Pinterest world!