This art lesson explores the scientific discoveries of dinosaurs and other prehistoric creatures found in Alaska, as well as the important role artists play in helping us to imagine what these extinct creatures may have looked like. Students draw an Alaskan dinosaur and add crayon rubbings for texture. A torn-paper landscape gives the art perspective.
Bull Kelp Collage
Students are inspired by a Tlingit legend, and learn about a local seaweed scientist and artist. After learning about the characteristics of bull kelp, students draw bull kelp from observation on translucent paper. Colored tissue paper is added with glue and water. Finished artwork can be hung in the window.
Butterflies and Bugs
Students look at butterflies and bugs in nature to learn about symmetry. They make a symmetrical butterfly or bug.
Students create small wire and cardboard figures, inspired by the story of American artist, Alexander Calder’s, miniature circus. Figures are painted and can be hung from a line or placed in a class scene.
Students are introduced to the concept of camouflage from the book, Vincent Van Gogh?s Cat. Each student draws a cat from observation which is colored to camouflage with a famous artist “environment.” The finished cats are graphed and students solve math word problems about cats.
Characters in our Community
In this lesson, students become familiar with the artwork of Rie Muñoz, a well-known Alaskan artist. They sketch and then paint a real person or animal they know in their communtiy. This lesson reinforces beginning watercolor skills, working wtih the brush and using the paints responsibly. It celebrates the children's reflection of their community.
Charles Mason Photography
Students examine the work of Fairbanks photographer Charles Mason and make a humorous collage, combining multiple images they unify with charcoal gray tone techniques to simulate black and white photography.
Chimpanzees and Jane Goodall
Students study Dr. Jane Goodall and her work with chimpanzees. They learn about the environment they live in and learn to draw a chimpanzee in its natural habitat.
Clan House Visit
Students work together to create a crayon resist replica of Preston Singletary’s glass house screen which can be displayed in a classroom window. They learn the basics of “Formline design,” the primary design format of the Northwest Coast Native cultures. A mini clan house model provides the class with knowledge about traditional clan houses in preparation for a visit to the Walter Soboleff Building in Juneau.
Students learn that clay comes from the earth, and becomes pottery when heat is added. Students are inspired by photos of cultural masks. They create a clay mask molded from their face. They add texture and color focusing on symmetry, embellishing with primary or secondary underglaze colors.
The book No One Can Ever Steal Your Rainbow by Barbara Meislin is used for inspiration. The students create a “peace” mural by designing their own rainbow on 'puzzle pieces' and assembling into a class mural. Each student writes a wish for the world and the wishes then become part of the art.
A Community Made with Lines
Students explore how buildings contain many elements of lines in walls, doors, windows, arches, etc. They use tools to print straight and curved lines to create their own buildings, which can be part of a community.
Cooperative Nature Murals
Students learn about Mexican muralist Diego Rivera, who incorporated everyday life in his mural themes. Choosing one of two nature themes, students create a cooperative mural depicting a class beach trip, or a class hike. They use a posable people template as a guide, and draw and paint environment such as plants, animals, rocks.
Drawing from Observation: Butterflies
Student artists/scientists observe and draw real butterflies. Kit includes 30 butterfly specimens. They draw the lines, shapes, patterns, color and symmetry of these amazing creatures, and record questions about butterflies.
Drawing from Observation: Flowers
Using a real flower to draw from, students explore how shape, color and lines are part of the flowers "language" to attract necessary pollinators.
Drawing from Observation: Seed Pods
Students observe seed pods to examine types of seed pod structure, looking for how and where seeds are stored.
Keys to Printmaking
Students create a “printing plate” using materials with texture. In this experience they consider shapes and make choices about design. Session 2 is a printing workshop! Students print their design on folded paper creating a set of cards. They notice where the “focal point” of their artwork is and use their imagination to interpret their abstract designs.
Mapping Our Place
Students worked together to create a map of the Juneau area, nestled in the middle of the lands of the Aak’w Kwáan and T’aaku Kwáan.
Students map squares include unique patterns, and some of the symbols they drew into their maps show natural resources of the area.
Students maps include some of the local Tlingit place names, such as downtown Juneau: “Dzantik'i Heeni,” translated “Flounder at the Base of the Creek.”
Masks and Symmetry
Students look at various examples of cultural masks, discussing symmetry and design. They then make their own symmetrical mask using paper and oil pastels.
Mirror Drawing with Heather Hansen
Students watch a video of performance-artist, Heather Hansen. They work in partners to create a drawing, mirroring each others movement and marks wtih colored chalk. This lesson creates a calm and supportive environment.
Oral Stories and Alaskan Animals
Session 1: After sharing a story behind one of Aleut artist, Alvin Amason's artworks, students create art in his style. They choose an Alaskan animal from a personal story and use a "resist" technique with oil pastels and tempera paints.
Our Wild Foods
Students are inspired by the story “Mary’s Wild Winter Feast” to make a connection with wild foods in Southeast Alaska. They create an art piece that, like the illustrations in the story, reflect both realistic depictions of wild foods, and Northwest Coast Native form line design.
Painted Mural with a Chop
Students are introduced to abstract art. They apply masking tape to a large white paper, then paint a cooperative mural in groups of 4 or 3, then add texture. They remove the tape to create contrast, then each make a personal“ signature chop” or stamp to complete the mural.
Partner STEAM lesson with River Rocks science kit. Students learn how to create a simple small vessel from clay, in the palm of their hand. Clay is made of the tiniest particles of rocks and other natural matter. The pots are decorated with sand and glaze and glass, all made from sand. Firing in a kiln is required.
Students are introduced to Molas, the art made by the Kuna Indians from Panama. Students compare Tlingit Regalia and Kuna Molas. They make a layered paper mola using Alaskan animals. Students incorporate line, color, shape, and pattern in their art.
Students use information about actual pictographs found here in Alaska to do drawings on sandpaper with watercolor crayons. Oil pastels are used to recreate the surrounding area around the pictograph.
Students draw a self portrait. They glue colored paper puzzle shaped pieces on their self portrait, then color with chalk. Finally black paint is added to the important lines on their portrait, emphasizing the power of line. It is a Tlingit value to give credit to those who teach or mentor. Students gave credit to people who taught or influenced them, and a special place.
Students are inspired by an instructional video of Juneau performing artist, Ryan Conarro. Students choose a character from a Filipino folktale "Why Mosquitos Buzz Around our Ears," follow instructions for making a shadow puppet, and participate in a brief performance with a sheet and light (provided.) This lesson prepares students for further creation and use of shadow puppets.
Students create “shaveroonies”-- imaginative creatures from outer space. They are made by cutting paper (shaving it), texturing the pieces and piecing them together into fanciful creatures.
Skiiers: Colors of the Arctic Winter Games
Students create dioramas for a paper-sculpture skiier outfitted in a race suit designed by students. All suit colors correspond to an Arctic Winter Games team. Students will position their skiers in action poses to best show off their unique suit designs. Accessories, such as warm hats, glasses and raccing bibs are added to individualize the team skiers and extend student's creative efforts.
Students are inspired Uri Shulevitz’s Caldecott award winning illustrations from his book titled, Snow. Students draw geometric shapes with a black marker to create a village, then choose a color scheme, and paint the village with water color paints. Finally, tempera paint is applied with a cotton swab to portray a “snow village.”
Story in a Bag (Drama kit)
This drama lesson explores collaborative storytelling through improvisation. By following a Story Spine to teach basic story structure, students are guided by the teacher/narrator in creative dramatic play to invent character and plot within a setting.
Students identify different kinds of lines in famous artworks. They create a continuous line abstract drawing. They embellish the drawing with colored markers. Students name their embellished line art and write about their “Story Line.”
Students discuss what is 2- and 3- dimensional and what defines a sculpture. They look at examples of art in their community. Students create a small free-standing sculpture based on a story (any good story will do.) This is a model of a larger sculpture they are proposing to build for an imaginary new library.
Students study Grant Wood and look at his unique paintings of Iowa. They then draw a landscape, texture and pattern it and add color sparingly to complete their art.
Thinking with a Line
Students play some simple string games to learn vocabulary words for directions and types of lines. They describe lines seen in photos and in artworks. Students use a simple line printing method printing straight and curved lines. Students create a design of either an invention that contains simple machines, or buildings.
Tidal Zones Mural
Students use photos of beach creatures and plants, in each of four local southest "tidal zones" to create a mural. Background texture is added with rubbing plates and creatures are drawn with oil pastels.
Trees and Beyond
Students examine Van Gogh paintings of landscapes paying particular attention to near and far. They learn that size and placement of trees are important to show perspective. After learning to draw basic tree forms, students create a landscape that shows perspective using markers and oil pastels.
Students practice watercolor techniques and color mixing using primary colors and creating a color wheel. Students draw a leaf from observation, and paint it implementing new skills.
Watercolor with Rie Munoz
Students learn about Alaskan artist Rie Muñoz. They learn watercolor techniques and proper paint brush use, and create a watercolor that features a watercolor “wash” and painted “texture.” The story The Runaway Mitten, illustrated by Rie Muñoz, provides inspiration for the paintings.
Wire Action Figures
Students learn to draw stick figures that bend and move like real people, focusing on action words that describe the movements. Students create a wire stick figure from pipe-cleaner and use this like a small artist mannequin to form into actions that they can draw. Students create a simple book with their drawings and embellish their wire figure with colored wire, in