"If you didn't use your back-up plan, you played it too safe."

You just thought that quote came from the Dos Equis Most Interesting Man ad campaign. Where did he get that insight? From his budget-strapped art teacher, of course.

I just thought I knew what I was doing when I had the preschool students create fish tank aquarium collages on 8.5"x10.5" infrared transparency films. I got the boxes of transparency sheets at a recent WASTE giveaway.

My inspiration was a greeting card received a couple years back that was a combination snow globe and fishbowl. Been puzzling possibilities for an art project from that concept.

Last winter the preschoolers used their rolling pin motor skills to crush lots of eggshells. We dyed the shell bits with diluted pink glitter paint, and spread them out to dry over Spring Break.

Our materials for the fish tank collage included glue sticks, stringed sequins, fabrics, tissue paper, silver Sharpie pens, honeycomb packaging paper, tempera paints, along with the transparency films and dyed eggshell bits. I've sent a lot of weird collage materials through laminators to be sealed, but I must have pushed the envelope. With so many variables, I have no idea what made the first two collages turn black in the laminator. Oops. Those fish must be swimming at night after the aquarium light has been turned OFF. This mess didn't harm the laminating machine or set off the smoke detector, thank heaven.

Sealed the rest of the kids' projects with clear packing tape, and displayed them around the classroom windows. I like the shadow/silhouette possibilites, and will pursue them with older students tomorrow.

My students like this board book:

© 2010 Nancy L. Ruder

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