Grades 1-5 Art

Category: Art Element: Line

Third Grade: HWEO Exploring Culture Through Art

(Note: YouTube Video/Audio may be more accessible via PC or Laptop)

Connecting: Relating artistic ideas and work with personal meaning and external context: Relate: Relate artistic ideas with Societal, cultural, and historical context to deepen understanding. (National Core Art Standards) PYP Phase 2 Responding: Investigate the purposes of artwork from different times, places and a range of cultures including their own

Both in their home room class, and art, Third Grade have begun the transdisciplinary unit of Inquiry: How We Express Ourselves. This means we address the same Key Concepts of Connection and Perspective, through the Central idea that ‘Through examining the arts, people gain insight into culture’. 

Considering questions such as “What is culture? How is culture expressed through the arts? What are some expressions of culture? And how does art help us understand the lives of people of different times, places and cultures (National Core Art Standards), and in addition to exposure to a variety of cultural reflections through the arts in their homeroom, art students have begun to specifically observe Australian Aboriginal Dot Paintings. Discussions around the meaning of ‘The Dreamtime’ lead to some wonderful and respectful listening to, and speaking about, various third grade multicultural theories/perspectives, about the beginning of time and creation.

To assist immediate engagement, students have been provided the opportunity to simply practise the very enjoyable activity of creating dot marks, while observing details in some Australian Aboriginal art works. While doing so, students have been exposed to music of the Didgeridoo, and listened to Dreamtime Stories such as Ka-ro-ra (an Aboriginal Creation Myth) The Rainbow Serpent, Tiddalik the Frog, How the Kangaroos Got their Tails, and How the Birds got their Colors.

As we move into the next stage of the unit, students are beginning to notice a common thread of symbols within the works and questions are starting to emerge regards their meaning, and ways in which they might help us to understand stories, beliefs and/or lifestyles.

For now, I leave you with a video of our first two lessons, and examples of some beautiful exploratory work happening in the art room. Enjoy!


Second Grade: Tuning In to ‘Representing the Human Form’

(Videos with sound in this post may be easier to view from a laptop or PC)

Welcome back Second Grade! We are now in the second week of our last art rotation, and this means classes (depending on their scheduled day) have attended only 2-3 lessons so far. However, as SLC’s will happen this week, herewith a quick update!

Second Grade continue with the Transdisciplinary Theme of How We Express Ourselves, and the line of inquiry “Artists use creativity in many different ways to express ideas and feelings”. To date, students have experienced the art forms of painting, ceramics and now, we are focusing on wire sculpting.

This unit flows nicely from our Portrait unit in January, in that we continue to observe how artists express the human form. Already, this week, students have begun to make connections with previous knowledge about facial proportions, as we begin to consider proportions of the entire body. Using simple stick figures, students have studied line, proportion and movement through observation of (some very keen) volunteer models. They have worked on noting how the body bends through various joints – what is possible and what is not. And with this considered how ‘action moves’ in various sports and dance looks. The end product of this unit will be a wire sculpture, which students have created by following procedure, creative thinking, the development of skills, reflection, evaluation and refining work accordingly. 

With only a couple of lessons to date, there is not too much to share with you at this moment. However, please enjoy this video, and the photos below, which may provide a glimpse into this week’s work.

Guidance for Student `Led Conference will be posted soon.



Second Grade: Painting – Lollipop Trees

The Second Grade Painting ‘Lollipop Trees’ is complete and ready for viewing near to the Elementary Office. All students have contributed to this work by adding their personal touch to the Van Gogh & Hundertwasser inspired background: artists who found innovative ways to express ideas through line, shape, color and repetition in particular. All students individually created the circular section of a lollipop tree, though not all have completed this work. We hope to find some time for ‘catch up’. To create this work students have used only primary colors to create their own gradations of secondary colors. This work focused on color theory and skills practise only. Students are now working on making more personal connections through creativity, in the medium of clay.

Second Grade: Next Steps & Ceramics

Our next step with the HWEO Unit, is to make connections with personal experiences, and add some creativity into the fold. Students are now working on remembering their observations of Hundertwasser’s work, thinking about an environment they know, and at the same time, using imagination, to envision a personal expression in the medium of clay. Students have been generating ideas, and observed a demonstration in creating a ceramic relief tile. They are building on joining techniques learned in First Grade (the Four S’s – score, slip, squish, smooth) to add interesting shapes/lines to a clay slab. This is an extremely challenging task for Second Grade and some of the greatest challenges emerge from developing skills in organisation and time management. We enjoy challenge! All Second Grade classes will be involved in ceramic work, over the course of the next week or two and more photos will be posted as the work develops.

Second Grade: Painting

(Images borrowed from: and Pixabay)

Second Grade students have been busy bees in the art room. They have begun by observing the vibrant work of Austrian artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser (Slides) and discussing his use of the art (and design) elements, line, color, shape, repetition and pattern in both his architectural designs and paintings. Through this, and specific analysis of his ‘lollipop trees’, students have practised basic mixing of primary colors to create secondary (ie. Red + Yellow = Orange) and focusing more so, on varying ratios of color, in order to create tertiary colors (ranges of yellow-orange, red-orange, red-violet, blue-violet, yellow-green and blue-green). Students have worked independently, practising the skills of color mixing and brush control while mimicking the style of Hundertwasser lollipop trees and further applied these to a large group work – a basic forest landscape with Van Gogh inspired skies (currently still in progress) Art lessons to date have involved investigation, exploration and skills practise only. The creative element of the art process shall be our next step through drawing and possibly a relief work in medium of clay. Please enjoy these photos from the last couple of weeks.

Third Grade – Design element: Emphasis

Believe it or not, colored markers are rarely used during art class. The majority of children will own a set of markers at home, and have access to them in their regular classroom.  In art, we want to provide students access to media which they may otherwise not experience. Hence the last few weeks of Printmaking. However, in relation to our Pop Art discussions, markers have been the way to go, and met with equal enthusiasm. Students have observed some work of Roy Lichtenstein, originally inspired by popular comic books of the 1950’s and 60’s. With the design element of ’emphasis’ in mind, students are currently creating their own ‘sound words’ with thoughtful use of positioning, layering, line, and pattern. Color selections are being chosen according to the prints previously created, as the two pieces shall eventually be creatively combined.




First Grade – Developing skills, and thoughtful application of color

Having created symmetrical line drawings with black colored glue (much control necessary!) students have been making use of the color wheel by applying block tempera paint. Students have chosen to select color to create visual symmetry, whether it be multi colored, or in specifically applying analogous colors. With the thrill of paint, a blissful voluntary silence has fallen upon the art room, along with some relaxation spa music, which helps students to focus. Some have taken to moments of mindfulness and meditation. Students will soon transfer these drawing/painting skills to a final art work of the year, inspired by the work of artist Georgia O’Keefe.


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