Draw the Mayflower

I showed my students how to draw the Mayflower last fall and was happy to see so many make beautifully detailed ships. Try drawing on kraft paper from the scrapbook dept. and those sails just pop off the page. • View and download Mayflower Tutorial MATERIALS • Print of tutorial for each student • Brown kraft … Read More

Friendship Bracelets

This project was a hit not only with girls but with boys as well. I think they are just “surfer” looking enough to work for both. 1. These bracelets are made with 6 colors, one for each letter in the word F-R-I-E-N-D. I cut about a yard of each color and taped them to the back … Read More

Pastel Tigers

Henri Rousseau was a French artist that lived in the late 1800s. He tried to paint in the schooled manner of the traditional artists, but the innocence and charm of his work eventually won admiration of many avant-garde artists. 1. Students trace a 6″ circle in the center of a 9″ x 12″ sheet of paper. 2. … Read More

Oil Pastel Tree

I found this project on Artsonia.com. I love how it makes students think of trees as a series of branches, and not just a fluffy shape that sits on a stick. MATERIALS • Multimedia paper • Oil Pastels, I like the Portfolio brand for blending DIRECTIONS 1. Students draw a large “Y” on their paper. 2. They add … Read More

Mosaic Tape Rainbow

posted in: 4th Grade, 5th Grade, Mosaic | 2

My creative curiosity has been peaked with a recent discovery of colored paper tape. It really makes any type of mosaic work a slam dunk, with no messy glue. 1. Beginning with 1″ green tape, cut strips into squares and line up across the bottom of a sheet of black paper. 2. Use purple tape squares … Read More

Finish the Spider

If you give students half of a symmetrical image, they will have all the info they need to complete the missing side. If you search for spiders at “Clip Art ETC” you will find THIS amazing collection. You may have trouble deciding which one to download. I chose the highest resolution of a fuzzy one, and … Read More

Haunted House in Coffee

I saw this idea in a recent Arts and Activities magazine. I thought a haunted house would be a good subject matter because of all the moody brown tones that could be created. 1. Students dissolve bits of instant coffee with water on a plate. The house is ‘drawn’ with a paintbrush, which allows for lots of thick and thin … Read More

Kandinsky by Matson

If you need a simple oil pastel project that works for many grade levels, try my “Kandinsky Colorweaver” project. I had prepared the paper with the center horizontal and vertical pencil lines so the students could jump right in making the colored diamonds. Thanks to Matson, a talented 1st grader for letting me share this beautiful artwork.

Leaves with Lines

This is a good exercise for those small motor skills. I’ve found students have a lot of fun just losing themselves in their patterns. 1. Cardboard templates of leaves may help young artists get started, but drawing their own is always best. Students draw at least two of their favorite leaves, and then draw the veins … Read More

Butterfly Leaves

This project was inspired by Lois Ehlert’s beautiful book “Leaf Man”. A little technology, namely stock photography and a color printer, helped me make dozens of flat, easy to cut and glue leaves. 1. If you are so fortunate as to live near some fall foliage, you can take the real thing to a color copier and … Read More

Dimensional Magic Mod Podge

Here’s another new craft product that I’ve been turned on to, courtesy of Michaels and their 2012 Holiday Preview they invited me to last month. It’s called Dimensional Magic Mod Podge, and it looks like just glue until it dries, then “wow!”   1. Follow the steps posted in my “Creativity and Michaels Stores” post to … Read More

Creativity & Michaels Stores

Last month, fourteen bloggers and I were invited by Michaels to their 2012 Holiday Showcase in Dallas. We were all in arts and crafts heaven, spending time with Jo Pearson (above), Michael’s creative expert and judge of TLC’s “Craft Wars”, and previewing some of the coolest new products around. But most of all, we learned that … Read More

Miro Watercolor Painting

Joan Miro was a Spanish artist who developed a very whimsical style back in the 1930s. His painting called “People and Dog in Sun” is  fun to imitate by drawing stick figures, stars and circles. 1. Draw one large stick figure in the middle of a sheet of watercolor paper, preferably in some action pose. Miro often repeated … Read More

Paul Klee Castle Drawing

Paul Klee was one of the great colorists in the history of painting. I developed this project that imitates his abstract “Castle and Sun” painting by having students trace cardboard shapes and fill them in with colored pencils. 1. Give each student a piece of black paper, a pencil and half a dozen or so cutout square, rectangle … Read More

Positive / Negative Flower

This is a simple exercise that uses positive and negative shapes and lines. 1. Students start with a 6″ x 9″ sheet of white drawing paper, and a 4.5″ x 4.5″ sheet of black paper. 2. They place a 3.5″ x 3.5″ cardboard template on the black paper, centered on the top edge, and trace.  The … Read More

“Things that Are Most” Project

I decided to reapproach this creative writing/drawing project from a book titled “Things that are Most in the World” by Judi Barrett. I tried it’s enclosed follow up a few years ago, but have now created a more specific formula to follow. Each page in this book is based on a different adjective, such as “The teensie-weensiest thing … Read More

Marker Line Leaves

1. Start by drawing the center veins of each leaf, which kind of looked like a long main line with an “X” through it. Sketch lightly with a pencil. Continue drawing these until the paper is full. See my small diagram. 2. Still using your pencil, draw the outside curved edge of each leaf as shown … Read More

Scratch Art Leaf

A Scratch Art Drawing class calls for a different plan than a regular drawing class. Erasing is not an option, and I’d like the kids to focus on drawing lots of patterns, so I’m going to give them the outline of this leaf to start with.  • View and download Leaf for Scratch Art Template 1. … Read More

Torn Magazine Duck Collage

I adore torn edges. They have a way of making shapes that would never happen if you started cutting away with a pair of scissors. 1. Find two magazine pages with similar shades of yellow, and two with similar shades of orange. 2. Tear small shapes from both sheets of yellow and glue to make up … Read More

Lichtenstein Style Portraits

Roy Lichtenstein was a prominent American pop artist who favored old fashioned comic strips as a subject matter. By using a pre-printed paper full of empty dots, you can make your own portrait – complete with graphic marker shading. 1. You can download my pdf template of empty dots. Start by lightly sketching your face with … Read More

Draw like Renoir

Auguste Renoir, a French Impressionist painter, was famous for his use of vibrant light and saturated color. This scratch art project is one way to play simulate that look of bright light on a sunny day. 1. I used the 24 pack of Portfolio brand oil pastels as they provide the soft covering needed for scratching away layers … Read More

Layered Paper Weaving

I’ve found the “over and under” concept of weaving is easiest to learn when using strips paper. Yarn gets tangled too easily and takes time to show patterned results. 1. This sample was made from Strathmore “Smooth Bright Construction Paper” tablet as it has sturdy paper in great colors. To create the “warp” paper, have an … Read More

Drawing a Shaded Swan

I’m finding that many readers are interested in my drawing tutorials, I would just like to find a standard way to present them across Blogger, Pinterest, Facebook and Google +. I like this tall stacked layout with the finished art above, does that work well for everyone? Or do you have any suggestions? I plan to … Read More

Cat Head Pencil Shading

I’ve yet to meet a student that doesn’t like to draw a cat, so this shading exercise should work well for most classrooms.   1. Fold an 8.5″ x 11″ paper in half twice and sketch the outline of the cat as shown. 2. Medium gray tones are added, with a few spots left white to … Read More

Gelarti Painted Bottle

Gelarti Activity Kits let kids makes their own peel-off stickers, but I opted to put aside the stencils and just make my own colorful Kandinsky bottle instead. It was super easy as I just painted right on my bottle and let it dry. 1. Five tubes of paint come in a kit. They have little nozzles … Read More

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