Having previously been a classroom teacher and having taught grades 2 to 6 for many years I have a particular love of linking literacy into art whenever possible. Grade 2 are currently learning about how weather impacts upon people’s lives and so I couldn’t help but think of the fabulous book ‘Cloudy with a Chance of meatballs’ by Judi Barrett (the book has also been made into a feature film). It would be great to compare and contrast the film with the book, in particular comparing the ‘weather terminology used’ and the impact on people’s lives from such dramatic weather.
I read the story to each of my classes and as I read students were divided into different groups and given a specific area to focus on and asked to record their ideas on large pieces of A3 paper in any manner they wanted.
Areas of focus:
What kinds of weather do we see?
What kinds of food do we see?
How does the weather impact on people’s lives?
How is colour used in the story?
Why do you think the author wrote the book?
Why do you think the illustrations match or don’t match the story?
Who is impacted the most by the strange weather?
Here are some of the student’s responses.
Grade 2 students were asked to create their own giant page for the book and we planned to display it outside the grade 2 classrooms with the idea that class teachers could collaborate and create some literacy links to the children’s artwork.
Next I invited the students to look carefully at the silhouettes created in the picture book. Students experimented with making their own silhouettes using our Interactive whiteboard lamp and torches.
Students were given the task of working in a team to create a cityscape or landscape, which helped to build upon their previous work.
Then they had to decided upon a new kind of food that could potentially fall from the sky and asked to make several of these as a team.
Here is one example of the original artwork from the book and the student’s work.