Thursday, October 20, 2011


This lesson is based on the book "" Birds"", by Kevin Henkes. The lesson may be found in Deep Space Sparkle Lesson Plans/Art & Literature II, which in turn may be viewed online. Janis Gillespie payed-yes, it costs money-and downloaded the unit. We reviwed the lesson and then selected  a section which we thought would be useable at lower elementary.
We started by drawing a branch with leaves on a light blue paper.  We outlined with black oil pastels, and painted in with tempra...... this would take one class period. Next we used scrap paper to draw 3 birds, and colored these with more oil pastels. You may spend additional time on a "how-to-draw-birds'', or you may just have the students wing it. When the birds are complete, cut out and glue onto the blue paper, carefully placing them on the branches. We did not add insects/clouds/sky, but feel free to improvise. This lesson would do well in the spring.!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Cubist Hands

This is a neat lesson to do with your upper elementary students that covers shades and tints, color mixing, and Art Appreciation. Students trace their hand 2 times onto a 12'' square piece of gray bogus paper, once from the bottom, and once from a side. Using a ruler, trace 3 lines from the top to the bottom, and 3 times side to side. Don't forget to slant the lines a little. Now-very important- outline everything with a black sharpie. Begin painting. EVERYTIME YOU HIT A LINE, CHANGE  COLORS. You may place the same colors kater/corner. When all the painting is complete, let dry completely, re-outline with sharpies, and  make the lines dark and even. They are very colorful, and you may wish to limit the paintings to certain colors of your choice.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Fall Still Life

I did this lesson with second graders. They created their piece by looking at a still life of a pumpkin and 3 gourds. There was a different arrangement of pumpkins and gourds on each table. We painted paste papers (1 orange, 1/2 green and 1/2 yellow) in one class while they were finishing up another project, then used them to cut out the shapes for our still life. They then added all the details of the pumpkins and gourds with crayons. If they had time they could color the background. They all came out really different and the paste paper added a nice texture. The kids loved painting them and combing through a design!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Face Book Books

This is an entertaining lesson, which may be used with the older elementary classes. Students will need an old paperback- (the thicker the better)-paste, and a short wooden dowel. I have a lot of short pieces of dowels  around as I do wall hangings with the fifth grades in the spring, but you can buy them at Lowe's if needed. First, students will tear off the back and front cover.  Decide on what shape the outside edge of the pages will take, and cut a pattern. Trace the pattern on a page, then bunch 5-8 pagrs together and cut. In my sample I used a profile of a face, but you can use any shape; apple, house, animal...any shape that is not too complex. When all pages are cut, load the dowel and the first and last page with paste. Put the dowel in the middle, press the first and last pages together, and let dry. The''book'' will stand up by it's self when dry. You can buy expensive YES! paste, if you wish, as that is what was used in the Bookmaking class.