Class 1 Art

The Water Lily Pond - Claude Monet

The children in Class 1 have really enjoyed their Art lessons recently and we couldn’t be prouder of the work that they have produced. Surprisingly they began their learning journey in the dark!  We turned the lights off and the children lay down on the floor. They kept as still and silent as possible. Miss Harvey-Jones switched the music on and the children listened carefully. Whilst the music played, the children were asked to imagine a creature, letting the music guide them. They thought about whether the music was fast, slow, high or low. What creature would move in that way? What creatures did this make them imagine and why? How did the music make them feel?

After learning that the music was called ‘The Swan’ and thinking about where they might find swans they looked at Monet’s painting The Water Lily Pond. They tried to describe this image and then closed their eyes and imagined that they were swans gliding through lily pads. They imagined what they could see around them and tried to describe the picture in their minds by using their other senses, for example: What sounds would you hear? What would you smell? They learnt that

Monet loved gardening and turned his gardens into works of art. They looked carefully at Monet’s painting again and counted how many colours they could see in the painting. They were surprised to learn that Monet only used five colours: cadmium yellow, vermillion (a red), cobalt blue, emerald green, rose madder deep (a pink), and silver-white). He didn't even use black for the darker areas because he thought black had a dulling effect so used colours like dark red and green instead. They looked at how Monet used the paint and thought about his use of brush strokes and noticed that Monet used many layers in his work; the flowers are thick blobs of paint and the plants are different swirls and lines. They talked about the fact that even though Monet’s flowers don’t have the same shape as real flowers, we can still tell what they are because of the setting, the colours, and even the title of the painting. They described the water, its colours and brushstrokes and how he was able to show that it was moving by using choppy brushstrokes. The children then created their own water lily pond image in the style of Monet and adding a swan to the image. When their work was completed the class read the story The Magical Garden of Claude Monet by Laurence Anholt. They had a super discussion about how the illustrations in the book are similar and different from The Water Lily Pond and described what would be inside their own magical gardens.