Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Hat Day with a nod to Ezra Jack Keats

You've heard me go on and on about my love for Ezra Jack Keats. As a little girl I loved his book Jennie's Hat. The story was charming but what interested me the most were the pictures. Keats used beautiful papers and collage and simple drawings and I was completely enthralled.

So when I started teaching a preschool class I was jumping at the chance to share my enthusiasm for the book. It helps to have the most wonderful students in the world: attentive and interested young artists. We started by reading Jennie's Hat. I pointed out the endpapers in the books. The artists looked at the many hats pieced together with flowered papers. We discussed the silly things we could put in our own hats if we drew them: pizza, pets, grapes.
A Picasso's Basement Artist hard at work

The artists started drawing faces on large paper. Then they glued large cut out hats made of manila paper which was heavy enough to support a collage. Using magazine clippings they filled their hats. Pictures of flowers, cats, dogs, candy, ribbons, cookies. One young artist suggested we add glitter. Thank heavens we're in a basement! It was a glitter fest like I've never seen. I've never been a huge glitter fan but it worked perfectly for this project!

I think the artists did an amazing job.

Check out the fantastic hats they made!

Hat festooned with dog and hot-air balloon.
Flowers and Glitter and a fairy

Doggy wearing a hat!


  1. Thank you Paula for sharing your gift with my little artist. She loves your class so much.

  2. You are so welcome! She's a joy to have in class! She works hard and produces amazing things. And of course her smile could light up a room!
    Which is helpful seeing as we need a couple of new lights! :-)