A wonderful family friend and fantastic elementary school teacher gave me the book, "Only One You" by Linda Kranz some time ago. She thought it might inspire an art lesson. I finally got my act together and am using it in some of my summer art classes.
The book follows Mama and Papa fish as they share their wisdom with their son Adri as he goes out into the world. Here a few of my favorite lessons:
"Blend in when you need to. Stand out when you have the chance."
"Find your own way. You don't have to follow the crowd."
"Know when to speak; know when to listen."
Kranz uses painted "rockfish" to illustrate her messages. For my inspired lesson we will create salt dough fish. Using my easy recipe of 4 cups flour/1 cup salt/ and 1-2 cups water we will kneed a soft dough (This recipe created 4-5 fish). The dough is simply mixed by hand and a fist size piece is shaped into a pointed oval fish shape. Next a v-like shape is created and added for a tail fin. Kranz's distinctive human-like lips are created with a small piece of dough. The fish will bake for about 3 hours at 300 degrees. When cool paint with bright acrylic colors and graphic shapes, such as stripes, zig zags and polka dots. I brushed a layer of Mod Podge when these were dry to add a nice shine and protective coat.
A big thanks to you MaryAnn aka "Mrs. Mac"! It is such a great book with many wonderful messages to pass onto children! :)