- variety of books depicting the work of different artists
- drawing paper (white drawing paper will work best)
- pencils, crayons, colored chalk, craypas or chalk pastels, watercolor paints, and tempera paint
- materials to set up a still life display (variety of apples or fruit or an interesting plant or flowers)
Objective: Children will learn about different artists and artistic styles and engage in an activity to expand their observational, creative thinking, and fine-motor skills.
- Engage children in a discussion about art and artists. Ask them if they know the names of any famous artists or if they have ever been to a museum, or ask them to describe any type of art that they have in their homes.
- Show children some art books. Select several works of art from each book to share and discuss. Find similar subjects (for instance still lifes, portraits, or landscapes) and ask the children to compare the paintings or drawings. Can they describe the different styles of each artist? Discuss the different materials that artists use (collage materials, paint, watercolors, chalk or oil pastel, or pen and ink).
- Set up a still life display in the art area and encourage children to create a drawing or painting of the items. Invite three or four children to work at a time. Provide them with drawing paper and pencils so they can first create a "sketch" or drawing.
- Set up another table with a variety of art materials. Encourage children to explore the different types of materials.
- Find an area in the classroom or hallway to display children's work. Engage children to discuss their work. What are the differences and similarities between different pieces of artwork? Encourage them to notice and celebrate their own artistic style. Together, create a language experience chart to summarize what children have learned.
- Keep books about artists in your library so that children have opportunities to learn about different artists and develop an appreciation for the many ways that people see the world.
Curriculum Connection: LANGUAGE/LITERACY
Every Picture Tells a Story. Provide children with books about different artists. Ask them to spend time looking through the books and to choose a painting or drawing that they find interesting. Photocopy each child's choice and ask each to write a story about the artwork. Assist children who need to dictate their story. Then, provide time for children to share their work.
Katie Meets the Impressionists by James Mayhew
Pablo Picasso by Ibi Lepscky
Story Painter: The Life of Jacob Lawrence by John Duggleby