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  • Writer's pictureMarisa Ramsey

Smart Start 2023-2024: Week 24


This week was all about the letter K.

One of our inspiration artists was Frida Kahlo. Smart Start artists learned about how Kahlo created beautiful, colorful, expressive self-portraits. Using one of Frida Kahlo's pieces as inspiration, our students used mirrors to see themselves and then try out their own self-portraits.


We spent lots of time thinking about kindness this week. We asked: "How can we show kindness in our classroom, at home, and in our community?" At the self-portrait table, we had an opportunity to also practice being kind to ourselves. We looked in the mirror and named all of the wonderful things we could see!


Our second inspiration artist was Keith Haring. Haring's work is characterized by the repetition of stylized shapes outlined in black and often filled with warm, bright colors (yellow, green, red, blue). The drawing style is relatively simple and understated, but most of the time it gives the impression that the characters in these works are moving thanks to the lines borrowed from the world of comic books. Our students thought about how they wanted their image to be "moving" on the canvas and then made that shape with their bodies. We traced and then chose two colors; one for the body and one for the background. This was a handy springboard for reviewing warm and cool colors and which colors pop when side-by-side and which colors blend.

These pieces will get backgrounds, outlines, and movement lines over the next couple of weeks. We cannot wait for you to see their finished work at our year-end gallery!


Tasty Science!

We love exploring and investigating. We are constantly following our students' curiosity and turning it into a learning adventure. A couple of weeks ago while experimenting with oxidation and apples, we discovered that Kool-Aid-soaked apples are delicious! This week, we practiced our powers of prediction by observing and then tasting apple slices soaked in Kool-Aid. We made predictions based on the color and smell first and then tasted to see if our predictions remained the same. We charted our results and discovered that some of our predictions were spot on and others were quite surprising. This process of curiosity, exploration, prediction, and discovery is foundational to cultivating a culture of problem solvers and critical thinkers.




Other Letter K-inspired learning and play:

  • Keith Haring Sculptures

  • Keyboards

  • Kinetic Sand

  • Kerplunk

  • Keys & Locks

  • Kites

  • Kitchen

  • Kinetic Movement


Speedy Reader Challenge!

We have some emerging readers in the room!


Morning Invitations


The undercurrent of all our learning and play this week was kindness. We read a book on Monday about how we all carry an invisible bucket and how kindness fills it up. At Smart Start, our goal is to always BE CURIOUS, BE CREATIVE, AND BE KIND. We are wrapping up Week 24 with full buckets!



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