GEMS Primary Years Arts Round-up

The primary students at GEMS (Singapore) have produced so many wonderful, creative artworks this year. They approach art with great enthusiasm and it is always a delight to see their work, and their confidence levels, develop throughout the year. Here is a glimpse into this semester’s units of work.

Grade 1 students created a clay bird for their Unit of InquiryHow We Express Ourselves’.

They were inspired by the works of Wassily Kandinsky when they used colour, line and shape to express emotions evoked by particular pieces of music.

Students also explored the works of pop artists; Wayne Thiebaud and Joel Penkman when making their ‘donuts and ice cream’ crayon and watercolour resist painting.

Grade 2’s showed their understanding of gravitational forces when they designed and constructed a kinetic sculpture inspired by the work of Alexander Calder for their Unit of Inquiry, ‘How the World Works’.

Students also compared compositional features in a variety of still life paintings before drawing their own arrangement of jars and bottles. They demonstrated their ability to draw from both observation and imagination using chalk pastel and black glue.

Grade 3 students demonstrated an appreciation for the scientific and artistic contributions of botanical artists, such as Margaret Mee and Ferdinand Bauer, in their Unit of Inquiry Sharing the Planet’.

They explored the biodiversity of Singapore’s rainforest vegetation through completing numerous leaf rubbings in pencil, oil crayon and chalk pastel before selecting from these rubbings to create a composition with imaginative drawn elements.

Students also explored the lasting impact of one of history’s greatest thinkers, Leonardo da Vinci, for the unit Where We Are In Place And Time’. Inspired by the drawings of da Vinci, students designed and constructed a frame for a ‘flying machine’ using wooden sticks, coloured tissue paper and glue.

The Grade 4 students have been creating with clay, looking at how to use the elements of art in their sculptures. The students have explored the medium of clay through space, finding out ways to make space go through and around the form.

Next, they explored the types of forms that can be created – organic forms and geometric forms – which can be seen from many angles. With this knowledge, the students drew designs of the sculpture they wanted to create. It has been a problem-solving challenge through the process of identifying weight and structural concepts. The artworks are looking incredible with each student’s sculpture being unique.

Students are completing their sculptures by demonstrating an understanding of value, selecting one colour and mixing it with white and black to create tints and shades to paint their artwork. 

Grade 5’s completed drawings using the principles of linear perspective for the Unit of Inquiry ‘Where We Are In Place And Time’. They discussed the development of perspective as a mathematical system for creating the illusion of depth and volume and considered its applications in art and other fields.

Students also explored the concepts of abstract art and action painting. They used various non-traditional tools to apply paint, including a spin-top which they constructed themselves, to create an abstract artwork that achieves a sense of order through the principles of repetition, pattern, symmetry or radiation.







Claire RimmerHead of Department, Visual Arts & Design


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