This blog post is all about exploring famous Art and linking what we can see in a picture to emotions, creating personalities amd characters and generating "Word and Art Selfies" in the style of the famous artist.It's easy to create links between Art ,Drama and performance, empathy and simple language work
The piece of Art I have chosen in by Henri Rousseau "une noce a la campagne". The portraits of the characters are strong and lead to discussion about how happy the wedding guests and the bride and groom are,... etcetra. Or is this just a very formal Victorian style painting?
Here are the stages of the language , Art and Drama investigations your class could carry out.
Reveal the picture to the children.Discuss with the children in the class, which people they think go to a wedding. Who might these people be? Which family members do they already know in the target language and who do they think the guests are?. Can they come out and indicate the guest and say the phrase “This is + family member noun “ in the target language.
Play character charades. Show a noun card to a volunteer. They mime the person as they look in the painting and members of the class should try and guess in the target language who it is. Encourage the children to ask “Is it......?” and encourage the volunteer to respond to the correct answer with “Yes it is".
Give out post- its. Create a word storm around the famous painting.Can the class add labels to each character in the picture. Can the children now add words and phrases in the target language that describe the picture e.g. characters’ feelings, ages, names , the colours they can see in the picture, weather etc.Don't forget the dog too!
Ask the children in groups to create their own freeze frame of a wedding photograph in a similar style to the Henri Rousseau picture. The children must create a name , an age and an attitude for each of the characters. Each of the children in the group will take on the role of one of the characters. Children may use props if these are available. Allow children time to practise saying their name, age , how they are feeling and who they are in the picture freeze frame. Ask the children to add one action that they think represents the character.
Bring the picture tableaux to life! Each picture could be filmed as they come to life or photographs taken and then the children could say their characters statements as a short introduction to the character.
Word Storm Art:This would lead easily to a piece of art work in the style of Rousseau to depict/celebrate a wedding, surrounded by a "word storm" of phrases and words in rthe target language to create the frame of the pictrure each child paints. (E.g. I am called I am....years old I feel happy etc I am the bride / groom/bridesmaid/father etc).