Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Psycho Baby presents the Pritzer Preschool Birdhouse Project!

As part of the first Friends of Pritzker Community Art Project, hosts of artists were asked to commission Birdhouses to displayed throughout Bucktown and Wicker Park from May 20 - June 5th, culminating in a auction on June 6th at Wesley Kimler's studio to benefit the Playground Project. Psycho Baby's brick and mortar is proud to say that we have been asked to serve as a gallery for the birdhouses of the tiniest artists being featured, Ms. Russell's am and pm preschool classes!
The little crafters above started a very special birdhouse project of their own that led to the creation of two totally unique and individual birdhouses we have ever seen. The classes began by seeing a bird out their window, and wanted to build something to "call the birds" to them, as birds are hard to study because they don't sit down very much! To look for the right path, they began with a brainstorming session, where they listed everything on a web they already knew about birds (such as that they hatch from eggs and live in nests.) After seeing all that they already knew about birds, the kids still wondered if birds had feathers or fur, if they had bones, and if their beaks are their noses. With all those questions in mind, the Project Approach was used so the kids could set out to experience as much about birds as possible. Birds were crafted by using found materials such as paper bags and cardboard tubes, and have been hung on a tree in their classroom. The kids then used cases and experience boxes (see above) borrowed from the Field Museum's Harris Library, where they learned more and more about our winged friends indigenous to Illionis (including a piece of wood that had been pecked at by a woodpecker!)
When you step up to Psycho Baby, the first thing you will see, gracing our windows are the group drawings made by the class, in which four students worked together (2 thinkers, a recorder, and an artist) to come up with scenes, such as The baby bird is happy or This bird lives in Ohio! Upon entering, you will then be greeted by the brainstorming web, and individual designs the children made as preparation for their group birdhouses (for example, a trampoline should be included so the bird can bouce to their house!). The next step are the prototypes, which each class had chosen to make out of tubing (ala a birdie log cabin). When they didn't get the desired effect, they tried and tried again, until their beautiful birdhouses were ready to take flight! The most requested item to go into the final houses? A potty, which they saw as a real need, so the 'birds wouldn't have to go in public!' Now, that's some thinking!

The am class' goal was to create a wooden roof to shelter the birds, and a cosy inside that our winged friends could relax in, with flags atop it so the birds would know where to land. This coloful creation (above, with class) meets all of their goals with both style and panache! Note the colored posicle stick roof, the many flags to sway in the breeze, and the piece de resistance, the birds' 'living room,' which brings the layered comfort of a nest indoors!

The pm class' focus differed from the am's: the children above wanted to birds to have multiple perches to rest on so they can chirp and socialize, a heart shaped door to welcome them home, and a bedazzled roof, which they made out of cool found materials - among them: buttons, noodles, playing cards and feathers.

We would like to give a cool, crazy "Bravo" to all of the young thinkers and artists who created houses that we wish were big enough for us to fit into! The coolest part is, a little birdie told us all of the birdhouses are on display around the neighborhood, so be sure to drop by, check out the masterpieces from Ms. Russell's classes, and then grab a map and see the entire collection of 50 birdhouses through June 3rd! It would make a wonderful stroll with the family throughout our neighborhood! And remember, the early bird catches the worm!

To view the preschool's project, visit our brick and mortar store at 1630 N. Damen, Chicago, IL 60647

What subject have your kids studied intensely? Let us know the crafty ways you have investigated anything from dinos to Bob Dylan's history with your family in the Comments section!

1 comment:

Do you have something to share with the group? Comment here, just please be respectful of others, polite and nice (as we try to be) to set an example for the cool, crazy kids!