Painting with First Graders should be a requirement for any adult wanting to learn to paint better. Yesterday I was the 'visiting artist' in three First Grade rooms where our triplet grandchildren go to school.

After giving a short demo of a cardinal on a Redbud branch, helpers passed out the supplies so that everyone could paint. What an amazing group of children! And very well behaved, too.

How fascinating it was to watch as each child carefully considered what to paint. They followed directions so well about making puddles of color, and many noticed, excitedly, the accidental color combinations that occurred in their palettes.

With only an hour to paint in each room, the time flew by. The first photo shows one of the galleries of art that they created.

This age group seems so spontaneous with the brush as well as being so trusting that the painting will be beautiful. It was a delight to be with each class.

They used palettes I'd ordered from Viking Woodcrafts in Minnesota, along with Da Vinci watercolor paints to paint on a fourth sheet of 90# Fabriano artistico paper. Every round and flat brush from my studio had been gathered up for this venture, along with water containers, small sponges, and a broken credit card (for making lines, branches, grasses, stems, etc.) They were well equipped to paint with professional supplies.

Some of the masterpieces will be displayed today in the cafeteria hallway so that the whole school can see them. Most wanted to take their paintings home with them right away, but I'm glad that others will get to appreciate their artwork, too.

Years ago, I was an elementary art teacher and have always loved seeing artwork created by children. Next month when our grandchildren visit our house, we will have an art show in the studio of their work created in the past year - wish you could all attend. Refreshments will undoubtedly include Easter candy.

Tonight we'll be painting here at their house with some of their friends. After last night's gorgeous sunset, they want to know how to paint beautiful sunsets. It will prove to be a very busy evening for me, I'm sure.

It's been an incredibly busy week, mostly spent taking care of four special children, doing lots of laundry, and fixing meals. The painting time was a bonus for sure!

On Monday, our Daughter-in-Law's Fourth Grade Class will be painting with me. Then I'm ready to head back home.



This week has been full of many activities, including time to create special art. Our older grandson's third grade class invited me to his school to share a watercolor lesson with them on Monday.

My demo for his class included a bed of pink and red tulips with a lost baseball tucked between the flowers. They watched attentively, and then it was time to create their own, one-of-a-kind masterpieces.

They loved knowing how to mix colors to make brown and black, and many were quite pleased with their finished paintings. I'd provided the paint palettes filled with primary and secondary colors, as well as the paper and brushes. It was obvious that their imaginations were going strong as they painted.

After painting, the students watched the huge SMART BOARD. (This was the first time I had seen a Smart Board.) Brant's teacher brought up my blog on her computer then the images were enlarged on the Smart Board for the whole class to see.

They enjoyed looking at my paintings on my blog and asked questions about making art. One question, "What is the hardest thing you've ever painted?" was difficult to answer. I explained that for me it was hardest to paint faces that look exactly like the person I am painting. Later I realized that the hardest painting to do was the one of all four of our grandchildren reading a book together. Click here to see that painting.

Yesterday, Brant brought home a huge stack of well composed THANK YOU letters from his class. Several third graders wrote that they would draw and paint a lot now, and many students suggested that I should keep on painting for all my life. I'm going to take that advice for sure. They were so appreciative, and when I get back home, the letters will be displayed in my studio for artists there to enjoy, too.

Thank you, Mrs. Council, for letting me teach about watercolor to your inspiring students. You have so many very good artists in your room!

Tomorrow three First Grade rooms will be learning more about watercolor. What a busy week!