Ceramic Pumpkins

This project comes from Ellen at Clayworks Studio. It’s basically making two pinch pots and blending them together. My kids grade 3-5 loved making these and the success rate was very high. 1. Give each student a piece of clay about the size of a small apple. Instruct them to remove a … Read More

Plastic Bag Mache Pumpkin

This pumpkin is made from about 40 plastic grocery bags, some Saran wrap, 3 rubber bands, newspaper, paper towel and mache, topped off with a beautiful new orange glitter paint I found at Jo-Ann Fabrics. I’m so excited to have found this beautiful way to recycle plastic grocery bags. Plastic Bag Pumpkin … Read More

Draw a Hand Tree

I saw this idea on Artsonia.com, and love showing kids how lines can give dimension to their art. 1. The students first trace their hand on a piece of paper. When finished, they should make the tops of their fingers very pointy. 2. Vertical lines are drawn as shown. The more irregular … Read More

Color Pattern Leaves

This is a good exercise for developing small motor skills. 1. Student traced at least two of their favorite leaf templates on a tabloid sheet of paper. Veins were added to divide the leaf up into large sections. 2. All their lines were traced with a black marker. Within each leaf shape, … Read More

Kinder Pattern Project

posted in: Kindergarten, Markers | 0

I’m guessing that as an art teacher I’m not the first to overestimate the abilities of my students. I’m never more aware of this than when new kinders come to my room at the beginning of a school year. Some are semi-prepared from preschool, but some are not. So as much as … Read More

Pin Flowers

This project came from an Arts and Activities magazine, and I loved how well it worked with kinders. 1. The students are to draw in pencil near the outside edge of the paper a rounded box (kind of like a TV screen). A zig-zag grass line follows near the bottom of the … Read More

“My Hand” Collage

I’m experimenting with different ways for students to start the school year off with an expressive project. Aside from drawing their faces, tracing their hands and making a collage / painting can make some very colorful and individualistic art. And most classroom teachers love having colorful art right away to fill their … Read More

Paper Mache Bowl

Paper-mache projects can work really well with any upcoming Earth Day themes. My favorite recipe for the mache is included below. 1. Tape a balloon to a heavy bowl so that is doesn’t move. Apply strips of newspaper covered in mache in both directions. Apply 2 – 3 layers. Allow to dry … Read More

CD Case Diorama

Here’s one more recycle project – using a CD case, cardboard boxes, and dried beans. 1. Collect clean cardboard packages, such as those used for cereal, crackers, pencils and markers. Open them up and cut out simple vehicle shapes, along with mountains, trees and sun. 2. Glue a small amount of dried … Read More

Rainbow Painting

This project offers students a chance to practice either wet-on-wet or dry brush watercolor painting. I used both for my sample.  1. I had the students paint without the aid of a pencil outline. They began by painting the grass across the bottom of the sheet. 2. Students who preferred the wet-on-wet rainbow painted the red arc, then orange, … Read More

Watercolor Sheep

I love almost anything that children paint with watercolor. This is a simple watercolor resist, done with sheep imagined on a hillside. 1. The students are to draw, as lightly as they can, three to five ovals (the sheep bodies) in pencil on watercolor paper. 2. A white crayon is used to … Read More

Overlapping Matisse Shapes

I combined an overlapping lesson with Matisse-like shapes to make a colorful drawing exercise. You could begin by talking about how Matisse didn’t start painting until he was about 20 years old, but then would paint morning, noon and night for pretty much the rest of his life. He eventually became a … Read More

La Boca House Collage

La Boca is a neighborhood, or barrio of the Argentine capital, Buenos Aires and is a popular destination because of its colorful houses. Looking at lots of photos of these amazing buildings is a good way to start this project. 1. I discovered these really cool Fiskar paper crimpers at JoAnn Fabrics, … Read More

Laurel Burch Cat Heads

This cat project was inspired by a talented artist named Laurel Burch, who sadly passed away recently. She had a wonderful style of drawing abstract cats with large eyes that met in the middle. 1. Ask students to make three dots (in pencil) across the center of a paper. The 3 dots … Read More

Custom Light Switch Plates

I saw this project in an Arts and Activities magazine. When your fridge and walls are already filled with your child’s art, have them paint your switch plates! 1. Your local hardware or home improvement store carries plastic switch plates for every need and they’re quite inexpensive. Provide the students with lots … Read More

Kinder Portfolio Project

posted in: Kindergarten, Painting | 5

I found this art and book combination over at Teach Kids Art. “The Dot” book is short and sweet and has a wonderful art message. The simple lesson of just painting lots of dots on a posterboard was good for kinders just learning how to follow directions. 1. I prefolded 28″ x 22″ … Read More

Kinder Line Art Project

Starting a kinder art class with a book is very helpful in establishing focus but can also be an opportunity to merge the art lesson with their other studies. Kinders in CA start off the year learning about horizontal, vertical and diagonal lines. Finding just the right book can often be a … Read More

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