Using Tone and Value
Most children generally get the concept of light and shade from early in KS1 or even earlier but getting the children to include it in their art work in the correct way can be tricky. Whilst studying the Ted Hughes book The Iron Man I though it was a perfect opportunity to teach using value in a picture. I wanted the children to create an Iron Man portrait so though using the medium of charcoal was the best way. The children would be able to blend the charcoal which would help seeing the value scale.
I began with a medium value charcoal and blocked in the shapes then asked the children to do the same. I was more than pleased when I didn't see 30 picture the same as mine. They had really experimented with the shapes to create different faces.
I then spoke about light sources and how the places where the light hits is the brightest getting darker as they light was blocked. We discussed which areas we would shade and which would be highlighted. They were then given a free reign to colour the eyes and background. I must admit this particular class amaze me when they use soft pastels and charcoal, the results were outstanding for their ages.