by Robert Louis Stevenson
The rain is raining all around
It rains on hill and tree
It rains on the umbrellas here
And on the ships at sea.
"Ships!" GW says as he pushes his paintbrush across the paper. The blue and yellow come together to become green as I recite the rain poem every so often during our art time this morning. Painting is becoming part of our morning flow, now being asked for in favor over going outside. Today our Oregon liquid sunshine was falling heavily and after my cajoling to go out and play in the rain fell on busy ears I began reciting this poem. Fingers pointed to the windows. "Big puddles." GH said looking out of the window with T and SC. We talked about the clouds filling the sky and the rain falling. We listened to the rhythm it drummed above our heads and wondered about if it was warm or cold outside. "Cold!" insisted SC "Inside!" So, we stayed inside.
As part of our color study work and to compliment the colors outside I offered small dollops of yellow and blue paint on dishes after going over the parts of the paint brush. Everyone held the paint brush and moved it over the paper as we practiced and talked about the different parts: The bristles hold the paint, see how soft they are?; The handle is for your hand, you can hold it and help the bristles dance over the paper; the metal part holds the bristles onto the handle, it can scratch your paper, be careful!
I continue to talk about the rain as everyone begins to paint. The paint goes on the paper, the canvas covered table and hands. Everyone has their own technique and we admire the indiviual colors and designs that appear. T holds his paint dish in one hand as he works, pushing the brush around then moving it in long, rounded lines around his page causing green to quickly appear. GH dips his brush mostly in blue, using the yellow sparingly. GW jumps right in and begins painting his hands and paper equally. SC very carefully holds the dish as he dips his brush in so that his hands do not get paint on them.
When everyone is finished we hang up our work and then admire each other's end result. Some are hung next to previous paintings and we talk about what we notice: handprints, lines, purple, yellow, dots.