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Mr. Stoller’s printmaking presentation at the AOE Online Conference this summer inspired me to pursue printmaking with my younger grades…even my rowdy classes.
After some trial and error, I developed a printmaking process that is efficient and engaging. It keeps students busy printing without a lot of wait time, which really cuts down on behavior issues. Best of all, it really is easy enough for my second graders and also works well with my most rambunctious older students.
Setting up takes a little time, but like most prep work, it is SO worth it.
I set up four printing stations, one for each of my table groups. Each station is set up nearby the table group that will be using it.
Each station has clear plates, brayers and ink, which I set up before the class starts printing. (Side Note: There’s no shame in having students work on another task or free draw while you set up.)
Students then set up their own work stations at their seats. Each student’s station contains the following items:
I recently talked about the importance of detailed, verbalized, and modeled instructions, so you might guess that I demonstrate this entire process. It’s the key to things running smoothly! I am very explicit when explaining what the students will do and demonstrate exactly what I expect. I stop and repeat myself any time a student is not paying attention.
As I said, this process has worked for my youngest and most boisterous students. If you’d like to try it in your room, follow the steps outlined below!
Running printmaking this way in my room has made things go much more smoothly and has all but eliminated behavior problems. Students are engaged, as they always have a job to be doing. It’s fun to channel the excitement that printmaking brings in a manageable way!
How do you make printmaking work in your classroom? What have you found to be the most efficient setup?
What has worked for your most rambunctious classes?
Magazine articles and podcasts are opinions of professional education contributors and do not necessarily represent the position of the Art of Education University (AOEU) or its academic offerings. Contributors use terms in the way they are most often talked about in the scope of their educational experiences.