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art program . . .
Instructor: Deneen Underwood

Understanding the Arts, a Multi-Cultural Program

Understanding the Arts Multicultural Program provides the opportunity for students to learn and appreciate art worldwide from the past to the present. It aims to develop the artistic talents and creativity of children in a variety of mediums and multicultural styles. The program broadens the students’ understanding and knowledge of art in all forms, exposing them to well-known work and to obscure, rare or unusual art that would ordinarily be overlooked. Numerous pieces will be featured at our annual student art show, where parents and teachers may also submit original work. Each child will receive one award for one of their projects.

Project themes provide students the opportunity to interpret art from around the world, revealing the students’ personal perception of themselves and world cultures. Students will soon notice a connection between art projects and classroom curriculum in subjects such as literature, geography, math, music, history and science. It is amazing to see students’ artistic achievements as their imaginations come to life through a variety of mediums.

Students also prepare artwork for submission to The San Diego Museum of Arts Young Art Exhibition (every two years). Accepted artwork will be displayed at the museum or local libraries. If our artwork is accepted, students, parents and teachers will be invited to the opening reception as well as complimentary tickets for admission to the museum after the show officially opens.

college center montessori school art programThe students also participate in community, city and county sponsored art contests such as the Helix Water District Poster Contest and the Del Mar Fair.

Since 2006 our students have had 10 out of 12 projects accepted into 3 of SDMA's bi-annual young art shows. During the past 3 years we have had 7 finalists in the Helix Water Poster Contest with two posters chosen for the Metropolitan Water District's annual calendar. Our display at the 2011 Del Mar Fair won an award for special recognition.

SAM BIGHAM 2nd Place 4-6

Congratulations to Sam Bigham, National Winner of the Magic School Bus "Create a Cover" Contest for Grades 3-6

click here for curriculum
click here for The Perk Club P.E.
click here for special projects
click here for Chinese instruction
click here for Shakespeare program
click here for summer program

Click Here for 2011 Art Show Pictures
Click Here for 2010 Art Show Pictures
Click Here for 2009 Art Show Pictures
Click Here for 2008 Art Show Pictures
Click Here for 2007 Art Show Pictures

Best in Show - Del Mar Fair 2011 Click Here
Helix Water Poster Winners 2009-11 Click Here
SDMA Winners 2009, 2011 Click Here

CLICK HERE for Art Curriculum from Past Years


SAM BIGHAM "Alien City" and AARYAN BOOTER "Alien Country"

Magic School Bus "Create a Cover" Entries
Sam - Magic School Bus Goes Inside a Piano
Ravi - Magic School Bus Visits the Northern Lights
Mrs. Majka with Mia's - Magic School Bus Goes Inside a Clock
Joy - Magic School Bus Visits Cave Paintings
Hunter - Magic School Bus Goes to the Great Barrier Reef
Aaryan - Magic School Bus Visits Easter Island

The theme for the 2011-12 school year will be "Expressions in Art"
Each year the art show curriculum is divided into 4 subcategories. 2011-12 subcategories are: 1. Traditions, 2. Expressionists & Impressionists, 3. Words & Numbers, 4. Linear & Beyond.
Art Show will be Friday, March 30, 2012

study  -  exploration  -  artmaking  -  studio  -  praxis (art in context)
presentation  -  critique  -  award

Traditions - Students will use various tools, substrates, materials and medium when creating art projects. These projects will be created using watercolor, tempera, acrylic, and markers. Projects will include: Jamaican Worry People, Chinese Lanterns, Painted Eggs, Traditional Dress, Wedding Cakes, County Fair, Parade Floats, Cotillion, Tea Time, Harvest Festival, Valentine’s Day, Picnic, Mardi Gras, Morocco Berber, Greek Market, Sari Painting, Malaysian Naïve Art, Peruvian Market, Korean traditional jewelry boxes, Cape Cod, Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard, Maypole, Headdresses, Quilt Patterns Dust Bowl  Tradition, Thai Coffee Painting, Nelson Mandela Posters, Palau Art, Lai See Envelopes, Blue Grass, Flash – National Holidays, Photoshop – Months, and Powerpoint Presentation – A History of Shoes. 

Expressionists & Impressionists - Students will discover, study and interpret techniques of famous international artists from the past and present in studio sessions using pencil, charcoal, chalk, watercolor, tempera, color pencil, and markers. Projects include studies of: Plein Air, French Expressionists – Georges Braque, Georges Rouault, French Impressionists – Edouard Manet, Paul Gauguin, Paul Cezanne, Henri Toulouse-Lautrec, Edgar Degas, Alfred Sisley, Berthe Morisot, Austria – Gustav Klimt, Egon Schiele, Henry Koerner, Norway - Edvard Munch, Denmark – Per Kirkeby, Germany – Gabriele Munter, Franz Marc, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Poland – Gershon Iskowitz, Italy – Renato Guttuso, Spain – Jose Manuel Merello, Joan Miro, Juan Gris, Joaquin Sorolla, Croatia – Tonko Smokvina, Mexico - Carlos Orozco Romero, Leonora Carrington, Guillermo Meza, Colombia – Fernando Botero, America – William Johnson, Elizabeth Catlett, Bob Thompson, Reginald K. Gee, Valerie Wolf, Grant Wood, Randell Henry, Winslow Homer, John Sloan, Alexander Calder, China – Fan Zeng, Li Xiongcai, Japan – Hiroshige Ando, Vietnam – Trinh Khoa, India – Nandalal Bose, Indian Rangoli, Korea – Kim Chong-hui, Australia – Adam Oriti, Nigeria – Chidi Okoye, Dilomprizulike, Sokari Douglas Camp, South Africa – Hardus Koekemoer, Tracey Rose, Mali – Abdoulaye Konate, Fresco

Words & Numbers - Acrostics, Palindromes, Onomatopoeia, Shape Poems, Alphabets, Initials, Numbers, Decorative Ages, Art Nouveau, Newspaper Collages, Numbers with Illustrations, Installation - Alice's Toadstools, Street Signs, Ivy League Umbrella Stand, Keyboards, Playing Card Collages, Dewey Decimal System, Sign Language, Crazy Eights, Squared and Cubed, Diamonte Poems, Alphabet Poems, Diphthongs, Number Collages, ART, Scrabble Tiles, Cryptograms, Greek Etas, My Name, SCHOOL, Other Alphabets

Linear & Beyond - Line, Value, Color, Shape, Texture, Space, Form, Balance, Emphasis, Rhythm, Unity, Chair, Monochromatic, Swirls, Dream Room, Soap, Still Life, Pattern, Horizon Lines, Silhouettes, Stacked Architecture, Pottery, Infinity, Highways & Biways, Geometrics, Cobblestones, Caterpillar Circles, Season Wheels, Color Wheels, Pomanders, Embossing

The March Art Show will showcase students' work from these 4 categories. Each classroom will be devoted to one of the categories with background music appropriate to each theme. Each themed room will display artwork from all grades. All of our students are amazing artistic talents. Each child receives an award for one of their projects, although it has proven to be extremely difficult to choose one from each students' portfolio of extraordinary work. Art is subjective. There are no harsh critiques of any student work. Each student has developed their own style and all of the work is important and frame-worthy. The students take great pride each year in their displayed work, so it is important that parents, family members and friends support our show with attendance. If you would like to volunteer to set up or clean up please contact the office or the art instructor, Deneen Underwood.

  Grades K-6 - Mrs. Majka
  • Jamaican Worry People
  • Painted Eggs
  • Wedding Cakes
  • Parade Floats
  • Tea Time
  • Morocco Berber
  • Sari Painting
  • Malaysian Naïve Art
  • Peruvian Market
  • Cape Cod, Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard
  • Headdresses
  • Quilt Patterns – Dust Bowl Tradition
  • Thai Coffee Painting
  • Nelson Mandela Posters
  • Palau Art
  • Lai See Envelopes
  • Blue Grass
  • Flash – National Holidays
  • Photoshop – Months
  • Powerpoint – A History of Shoes
  • Plein Air
  • French Expressionists – Georges Braque, Georges Rouault
  • Austria – Gustav Klimt, Egon Schiele, Henry Koerner
  • Norway Expressionist - Edvard Munch
  • Spain – Jose Manuel Merello, Joan Miro, Juan Gris, Joaquin Sorolla
  • Mexico - Carlos Orozco Romero, Leonora Carrington, Guillermo Meza
  • China – Fan Zeng, Li Xiongcai
  • India – Nandalal Bose
  • Indian Rangoli
  • Korea – Kim Chong-hui
  • Australia – Adam Oriti
  • Nigeria – Chidi Okoye, Dilomprizulike, Sokari Douglas Camp
  • America – William Johnson, Elizabeth Catlett, Bob Thompson, Reginald K. Gee, Valerie Wolf, Grant Wood, Randell Henry, Winslow Homer, John Sloan, Alexander Calder
  • Acrostics
  • Palindromes
  • Shape Poems
  • Decorative Age
  • Art Nouveau
  • Installations
  • Street Signs
  • Keyboards
  • Playing Card Collages
  • Dewey Decimal System
  • Sign Language
  • Crazy Eights
  • Number Collages
  • ART
  • Scrabble Tiles
  • Cryptograms
  • Greek Etas
  • Other Alphabets
  • My Name
  • Value
  • Texture
  • Balance
  • Emphasis
  • Rhythm
  • Unity
  • Chair
  • Monochromatic
  • Dream Room
  • Soap
  • Silhouettes
  • Stacked Architecture
  • Pottery
  • Infinity
  • Highways & Biways
  • Color Wheels
  • Fresco
  • Pomanders


  Pre-Kindergarten - Miss Chandima

  • Chinese Lantern
  • Traditional Dress
  • County Fair
  • Harvest Festival
  • Mardi Gras
  • Sari Painting
  • Korea traditional jewelry boxes
  • Greek Market
  • French Impressionists – Edouard Manet, Paul Gauguin, Paul Cezanne, Henri Toulouse-Lautrec, Edgar Degas, Alfred Sisley, Berthe Morisot
  • German Expressionists – Gabriele Munter, Franz Marc, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner
  • Polish Expressionist – Gershon Iskowitz
  • Croatian Expressionist – Tonko Smokvina
  • Colombian Expressionist – Fernando Botero
  • America – William Johnson, Elizabeth Catlett, Bob Thompson, Reginald K. Gee, Valerie Wolf, Grant Wood, Randell Henry, Winslow Homer, John Sloan, Alexander Calder
  • Japanese Expressionist – Hiroshige Ando
  • South African Expressionists – Hardus Koekemoer, Tracey Rose
  • Onomatopoeia
  • Initials
  • Newspaper Collages
  • Ivy League Umbrella Stand
  • Squared and Cubed
  • Diamonte Poem
  • Diphthongs
  • Color
  • Space
  • Form
  • Still Life
  • Pattern
  • Horizon Lines
  • Silhouettes
  • Cobblestones
  • Season Wheels
  • Toothbrush Painting
  Preschool - Miss Marcella
(the list below is in addition to projects planned by their teachers)
  • Cotillion
  • Picnic
  • Maypole
  • Danish Expressionist – Per Kirkeby
  • Vietnamese Expressionist – Trinh Khoa
  • Malian Expressionist – Abdoulaye Konate
  • Alphabets
  • Numbers with Illustration
  • Alphabet Poem
  • Line
  • Shape
  • Swirls
  • Caterpillar Circles
  Infants - Miss Juanita and Miss Maria
  • Valentine’s Day
  • Italian Expressionist
  • Numbers
  • Geometrics

Siena Meng - California Poppies, Michael Chandler & Jackie Bonner - California Hacienda, Aaryan Booter - California Lighthouses, and Sam Bigham - California Seashore


SIENA MENG 3rd Place K-3      JACKIE BONNER 1st Place 4-6      SAM BIGHAM 1st Place K-3
Metropolitan Water District 2012 Calendar                                                                                              

NANI ESPIRITU 2nd Place Grades K-3


MICHAEL CHANDLER 3rd Place for Grades 4-6 & SAM BIGHAM 1st Place for Grades K-3

MICHAEL CHANDLER 3rd Place for Grades 4-6

SAM BIGHAM 1st Place for Grades K-3
Metropolitan Water District 2011 Calendar


All 4 art projects submitted to the SDMA Young Art Show "Making Multiples" have been accepted. Kindergarten & 5th grade projects were displayed at the San Diego Museum of Art & 1st & 3rd grade projects were displayed at the Joan Kroc Library until May 29, 2011.

Jackie Bonner & Michael Chandler
"Deep Sea Octopus"
San Diego Museum of Art
cut paper and markers

Nani Espiritu & Siena Meng
"Three Snails"
San Diego Museum of Art
cut paper, fabric and raffia

Sam Bigham
"Cape Town Beach Houses"
Joan Kroc Library
cut paper and markers

Aaryan Booter
"Citiscape at Night"
Joan Kroc Library
cut paper and markers

All 4 art projects submitted to the SDMA Young Art Show "Expressing Literature" have been accepted.
Kindergarten & Third Grade Projects were displayed at the San Diego Museum of Art April 18 - May 31, 2009.

Tonga the African Elephant Story by: Debbie Buttar
Artwork: Haley Banks, Aaryan Booter, Seth Borrayo, Lucy Conroy, Isaac Cota, Jeremy Gulley, Benjamin Lewis, Amelia Norkowski, Andie Ramos, Nicholas Stilwell, Amberly Tran & LeDamion Willis

Rikki Tikki Tavi, the Jungle Book by: Rudyard Kipling
Artwork: Jackie Bonner, Michael Chandler, Sydney Hendricks-Tricks
3rd Grade

First/Second & Fifth Grade Projects were displayed at Joan Kroc Community Library April 18 - May 31, 2009.

The Road Not Taken by: Robert Frost
Artwork: Gabe Argimon & Sam Bigham
2nd Grade and 1st Grade

Charles Dickens Victorian House
Oliver Twist, David Copperfield, The Pickwick Papers & Nicholas Nickelby

Artwork: Will Bigham, Veronica Chandler & Paola Espinal
5th Grade

2011 art show program

Discovering Art
some projects included:
ENCHANTED LANDS - Snow Globes, Broadway Playbills and Opera Cards, We're Not in Kansas Anymore, Winter Wonderlands, Train Town, Dinosaur Scenes, and artwork illustrating Tahiti, Patagonia, Tanzania, Sri Lanka, the Amazon, Madagascar, the Outback of Australia, Serengeti, Ireland, and New Mexico. A Powerpoint Presentation featuring U.S. National Parks. A Flash Animation of transportation. Photoshop applications show images of crazy buildings from around the world.
SPECTACULAR SPACES - Student projects will depict spectacular spaces on Earth and beyond. Projects include: Desert Scenes, Cacti, Palm Trees, Stars, Globe Scene, Planets, Scenes from a Planet, Tundra Scenes, Freshwater Scenes, Tropical Rain Forest Scenes, Rain Forest Vine, Grassland Scenes, Swamp Scenes, Deciduous and Coniferous Forest Scenes, Pine Cones, Acorns, Under the Sea, Bridges, Views from Windows.
WONDERFUL WILDLIFE - Hummingbirds, Ceramic Bugs, Snails, Dolphins, Bird's Nests, Bug Boxes, Safari Sticker Scenes, Hand Herds, Zoo Doorknob Hangers, Sheep, Elephants, Bird Houses, Marsupials, Tropical Birds, Lizards, Safari Fans, Cats, Turtles & Tortoises.
AMAZING ARTISTS - Projects include studies of: Rebecca Brown (New Zealand), U.S. Folk Artists Sharon Ascherl & Kathy Jacobson, Wasily Kandinsky, Kuna Mola Tribe (Panama), Aaron Douglas, Grandma Moses, Claude Monet, Roy Lichtenstein, Mark Rothko, Amedeo Modigliani, Norman Rockwell, Romare Bearden, Faith Ringgold, Salvador Dali, Frida Kahlo, John James Audubon, Patssi Valdez, Ashok Sinha, Hokusai Katsushika (Japan), and Gerald Bhengu (South Africa)
CREATIVE CRAFTS - Cartoon Names, Anchors, Prints, Spinning Tops, Buttons, Tambourines, Binoculars, Mexican Suns, Tulips from Holland, Children from Around the  World Cutouts, Airbrush, Treasure Chests, Kente Cloth, Mandalas, Pop-Ups, Gerber Daisies, Flower Pressings, and an Art Book.

Adventures in Art
some projects included:
- Beach Balls, Beach Towels, Card Game Designs, Board Game Designs, Ship in a Bottle, Big Top Clowns, Caricatures, Yoyo's, Sand Art, Magician Hats, Mahjongg Tiles, Egyptian Collars, Egyptian Frontalism, Domroo Drums, Powerpoint Presentation on Acient Games from Around the World; Flash Animation Moving Games; and Photoshop Applications - Fun House Mirrors.
ART IN MOTION - Surfboards, Skateboards, Boomerangs, Sailboats, Safari Hot Air Balloon, Photo Choo Choo, Chimes, Tie Dye, Festival Posters, Spray Art, Megaphones, Pennants, Snowflakes, Rain Sticks, Haiku Illustrations, Pinwheels, Maracas, Kaleidiscopes, Twirls, Ladybugs,
- Triptychs, Illuminated Texts, Castle, China Ming Dynasty, South American Chimu Mantles, India-Mughal Dynasty, African Malian Empire, Viking Art, Maori Paddles, Native American Arrowheads, Harlequin, Kievan Rus Miniature Portraits, Persian Khatam-Kari, Wax Seals, Heraldry, Crowns & Scepters, Bayeux Tapestry, Beowulf Illustrations, Native American Canoes, Stained Glass in Paper, Medieval Architecture,
HOME IS WHERE THE ART - IS Citiscapes, Vases, Umbrellas, Lamp Designs, Rugs, South Pacific Tapa, Mailbox, Teapots, Leaves, Ponchos, Decorative Orbs, Worldly Welcomes, Native American Beading, Leather Tooling, Found Art, Aborigine Bracelets, Recipe Cards, Telescopes,
HOMAGE -Interpretations of art by Andy Warhol, Vincent Van Gogh, Henri Matisse, Jacob Lawrence, Georgia O'Keefe, Man Ray, Mary Cassatt, Jan Vermeer, Diego Rivera, Rene Magritte, Paul Klee, Eugene Martin, Kameda Bosai, Pierre Bonnard, Henry Ossawa Tanner, Jackson Pollock, Gabriela Aberastury, Daniel Kinyanjui Amos, Janet Sanon, and Joel Gauthier.
SPECIAL THANKS TO SUZANNE FREDERICQ, widow of American Artist Eugene Martin
for sending t-shirts, books, postcards and a poster depicting his work.

Exploring Art
some projects included:
DREAMSCAPES - Dreamcatchers; Safari Mobiles; Fairy Tale Illustrations; Creatures Great and Small; Long Ago and Far Away Illustrated Series - Icelandic Eddas, Greek Mythology, Nursery Rhymes; Hieroglyphics; Treasure Maps; Accordion Dragons; Lighthouses; Instruments; Clocks; Moons and Stars;
FINE ART - Sfumato study; Chiaroscuro study; Vanishing Points & Perspective; Inuit Sculpture; Landscapes; Picasso's Modern, Surrealism; Abstract Classicism; Analytic Cubism; Black, Rose and Blue Periods; Renaissance painting study and interpretation; South American scenes; Life Drawing; Mexican Metal Tooling, Kimono landscapes; MC Escher interpretation; Flower Garden; Finger Painting;
DESIGN - 20th Century Fashion; 20th Century Automobiles; Basket Weaving; Paper Mosaics; Venetian / Carnival Masks; Aztec Masks; Decoupage; Handcrafted Jewelry; Hawaiian Leis; Chinese Calendar Wheels; Chinese Paper Lanterns; Mexico Sticker Map; Main Street c. 1903;
LITERATURE & POETRY - Poetry Illustration; Character Illustration for Edwin Arlington Robinson's Anthology, Edgar Lee Masters' Spoon River Anthology and Canterbury Tales; Book Cover Illustrations of Children's Tales from around the World; Bookmarkers; Literature Genre Wheels; Accordion Picture Books; African Folklore Illustration; Harlem Renaissance Literary Illustration; Illustrations depicting works by Famous Literary Men and Women; Don Quixote Windmills; Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass; Ink Block depicting scenes from Victorian Literature; Children's Favorites; Aesop's Fables;
GRAPHICS & MULTIMEDIA - CD Covers; Movie Posters; Popcorn Bags; Far Corners of the Earth Travel Posters; Passports; Magazine Covers; Commemorative Postage Stamp Design; Retail Logo, Bag and Tag; Sporting Event Flyer; Camp Patch; Powerpoint Presentation on Museums from Around the World; Flash Animation; Photography with Photoshop Applications; and Corporate Marketing Packages.

art history from around the world

Art History from Around the World
some projects included: kites, aborigine art, fans, batik, Chinese dynasty vases, windsocks, dolls, architecture, African scenes, weaving, sand art, metal sculpture, map collages, western art movements, fabergé eggs, puppets and booths, cave drawings, impressionism, traveling trunks, Incan tapestry, shell art, Meso- American art, piñatas, pyramids, musical patterns, totem poles, country saws, sun catchers, abstract expressionism, tipis, beeswax dipped candles, powerpoint presentation, animations

The Art of Science pictures/program
some projects included: decorative stars, fossils, painted rocks, planets, constellations, colors in nature, scientific specialty displays, ornithology, ichthyology, continental animal kingdoms, paleontology dioramas, Einsteins, theorum collages, molecules, magnetics, textures, petri dish designs, aeronautics, geometrical shapes, miniature town.

A Celebration of World Cultures
some projects included: collages, Japanese watercolors, school quilt, African masks, leather tipis, Mexican ancient and colonial architecture, Medieval paper mosaics, miniature hats, shamrocks.
SPECIAL THANKS TO SUZANNE FREDERICQ, widow of American Artist Eugene Martin
for sending t-shirts, books, postcards and a poster depicting his work.

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