I rarely try new lessons with Kindergarten. It freaks me out. I like to stick to what I know, and what works well because sometimes that is just how I am! Plus, I’ve spent years getting my Kindergarten curriculum to where I want it and like it. But this year, I tried a new lesson that I found while browsing and old Arts and Activities magazine. Architecture and Observational Drawing (two of my favorite things) all rolled into one lesson!
I demonstrated on the Elmo how to use shapes to construct buildings, and emphasized drawing large
Students build a structure with blocks (I had them work in teams)
Students draw what they built and later I had them add creative details using line types and their own imagination.
This was a great lesson, and one of my favorite new lessons that I have tried because it got my Kindergarten students away from the follow me back and forth and into true observational drawing, which is a great goal for any art student- To be able to draw what they see. Although it was challenging for some, I was amazed at the detail students were able to achieve and how excited they were to try their hand at this exercise. All I had to do was put some faith in the abilities of the students and let them try something more advanced. The products may not have wowed a crowd, but the process was oh so important and great for teaching shapes, lines, observational drawing and architecture, plus it only took 2, 40 minute class periods. I’ll be sure to add this lesson to my yearly grid.
What are other ideas do you have for observational drawing with lower elementary students?