Beautiful handcrafted windsocks hang from the staircase at the entrance of Edgemont Elementary, creating a fun and festive display. Brightly colored and distinctively unique, these pieces of art bring a smile to everyone’s face as they enter the building. Upon closer examination, one can tell the windsocks were clearly inspired by something greater.

Marie Mattinson, the art teacher at Edgemont Elementary, explains that each of the second graders made a windsock after the style of a Dutch painter named Piet Mondrian. Mondrian was famous for his abstract patterns created from simple use of the line. After reading and studying the art element of lines and patterns from books such as “The Dot and the Line” by Norton Juster, Mattinson had her students create windsocks to apply these practices.

Following the style of Mondrian, the second graders took straight pieces of cardboard, dipped the edges in black paint and stamped lines onto pieces of paper. The students continued this until they achieved a desirable pattern. Next, using brightly colored paint, they filled in sections of the pattern where the lines overlapped, creating shapes. Once dry, the students rolled their papers into a tube shape then added finishing touches using crepe paper.

Mattinson loved watching all the second grade students proudly wave their completed windsocks through the air. Throughout the project, Mattinson says the students were able to further develop their fine motor skills through engaging in this hands-on activity.

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