Over the winter break, I cleaned out, organized, and added a few new things to the studio. I think for the kids sake it's important to keep most things familiar, but to also add something new as an element of excitement and surprise.
When you walk up to the studio you'll see a new sign hanging on the front door that says, "atelier," which is "studio" in Italian (it is also the name given to the art studios in Reggio Emilia preschools). Of course this is more for me than for the kids, but I found it at an antique fair and couldn't pass it up!Inside the studio, I added icicle lights to the ceiling beam to add some warmth and magic during this cold, rainy winter.
Lately the children haven't been using the chalkboard as much as I thought they would. Why use chalk when you can use paint? So I added some shelving low on the wall for paint cups and fastened a large canvas to the wall for painting. This will now become a rotating wall for various painting projects.
With many new kids this past fall, I created new photo documentation panels to display on the wall. I wanted the new children to feel as much a part of the studio as the children who have been here all along. Seeing photos of themselves on the wall helps them to make connections between present and past work -as well as feel a sense of ownership here.
I'm excited for a new session and a new year!