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A Collaborative Effort

March 10, 2021 | Kristen Jordan

This beautiful piece of artwork is the result of many hands and many materials.  It is the culmination of the children’s thinking and creating that began with the study of astronaut Mae Jemison. 

As the children learned a bit about space, they considered stars and then painted stars to fill the sky, thinking about how far or close they might be. 

As they imagined themselves as astronauts flying in space, children drew more than one draft, added details and color.  This work took several days to complete.  When finished, children chose where they wanted to place themselves in the field of stars!

Using pattern blocks, children created rocket ships, while learning the shapes and thinking about symmetry and design.

Finally, the last space traveler, and the last rocket were added to this collaborative, mixed media piece of art at the end of last week. It reflects so much learning and effort on behalf of each child.  It included experiences from so many different arenas:  It required working on skills, such as drawing, fine motor control, and spatial reasoning.  Children engaged in learning content in math and science.  They responded to their learning through the art mediums of paint, and drawing with different tools. But the best part of all was working together to create something so beautiful!  

Kristen Jordan

Teacher, Rivers Class

Kristen Jordan began helping at Mustard Seed School in 2006, after her daughter had been a student in the preschool. She substituted for many years in all grades; in 2011, she returned to the classroom and has been a teacher in The Nest ever since.

Prior to the birth of her daughter Clara, in 2002, Ms. Jordan worked in Brooklyn as a first grade teacher with the New York City Public Schools. During this time, her school collaborated with the Brooklyn Museum, and this work helped Ms. Jordan develop a real interest in the parallels between the process of making art and the process of writing in the classroom. She thoroughly enjoys teaching both art and literacy to preschoolers.

Ms Jordan’s background includes work with the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project. While at Teachers College, she trained with esteemed educator and author Lucy Calkins. Early in her teaching career, Ms. Jordan did not think that she wanted to teach very young children but her view has changed! She now really enjoys and takes great interest in young children and their development.

Ms. Jordan enjoys reading, working out, hiking, cooking, and spending time with her daughter and family. Although she has lived on the East Coast for a very long time, as a native of Oregon, she really loves the mountains!

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