Inspiring children one color at a time

Line Drawing Art Lessons:Turtles

By on Jun 30, 2009 | 20 comments

Line drawings are a super easy way to start off your art curriculum. I usually do some type of line drawing with all my grade levels at the beginning of the year. Not only is the set-up simple and there is virtually no clean-up, but it gives me a chance to get to get to know my students and their art interest.

The projects may look simple, but in fact, there is a lot going on!
These turtle drawings develop fine motor skills: drawing with a marker, cutting and pasting, establish a sense of freedom with art (mistakes are not only fine; they make great art!) and finally they beautify your classroom during these first few weeks of school which makes parents happy and students proud. What more do you need?

Okay, so here’s how to do it:

Supplies:
Drawing Paper
Black fine-tip marker (Sharpies make a dynamic statement)
Colored construction paper

Instructions: Drawing the Turtle


Directed line drawing for the turtle:
1. Draw a large upside down letter “U”
2. Connect the bottom with a slightly curved line. Then, make another line just above the bottom line.
3. For the belly of the turtle, create a scalloped edge by drawing little upside down bumps along the bottom line.
4. Add two letter “U’s” for the feet.
5. Add a sideways “triangle” for the tail.
6. Add a head by putting your marker on the very bottom corner of the shell and drawing a large bubble shape. Make sure to keep the neck thin and the head big and round. If you want, you can add a mouth.
7. Fill in the turtle shell with lines, connecting the curved lines to make a patchwork of shells.
8. Now, fill in all the small sections in the shell with different patterns. Use hearts, zig-zags, bubbles, spirals, checkerboards, wavy lines, etc. Be creative!

Now, here’s a tip: When making a pattern of lines, make sure to connect the lines to the outside of the shape. Don’t stop short!


These sweet turtles were done by Kinders! Needless to say, they were very proud. One of the secrets to making the project appear easy, is to draw lots of pattern samples on the board. Ask the children what a line is and then draw some. Point out patterns on classmate’s shirts, on the wall, etc. Get interactive!

    20 Comments

  1. Tangle Turtles!! Love these.

    Ms. Julie's Place

    June 30, 2009

  2. I made one of these last night. Thank you very much for the drawing instructions. I am not very good at drawing and your instructions were perfect! I love my turtle.

    My daughter wants to do one with a seahorse. :)

    Joi

    July 1, 2009

  3. I love this idea! Can't wait to try it…. thanks for sharing this!!!

    TeachKidsArt

    August 19, 2009

  4. I love your website. It's very helpful to me since I am a new elementary art teacher and graduated from college with only secondary internship experience.

    Thank you for sharing!

    aimee

    September 10, 2009

  5. Love your ideas my daughter and I try before I teach at school and she can't wait for our tuesday art testing day …thank you

    davecrombie

    September 14, 2009

  6. oho good dear !!!! very interesting blog and a good posting !!! you must maintain your blog, its interesting !!! Nice Buddy
    ________________________________

    Research Papers Help

    marry

    January 4, 2010

  7. Gotta love the "line"! Good luck with your site!

    Patty Palmer

    June 12, 2010

  8. LOVE this lesson! I homeschool my kids and this lesson was used at a co-op that we attended. This year, I’m doing it at home with my K and 2nd grader to wrap up our turtle week! Since we live in Asia, I GREATLY appreciate having access to all of your awesome lessons online! What a great help! Thanks for all the work you have put into this wonderful site!!

    amber

    November 18, 2010

  9. Your site has been such a big help with getting new ideas. Nothing makes the day fly by like trying something new with your students!!!

    Karlos

    February 23, 2011

  10. a great lesson for my special education class!

    ashley

    March 17, 2011

  11. I’m sure you know this by now, but there is a book named A dome for a Home about a turtle looking for a cozy home. written by ruth martin illustrated by michael Garton.

    karen

    September 1, 2011

    • you can introduce the turtle project by reading the book.

      karen

      September 1, 2011

    • Thanks for the book rec! I’ll look for it.

      Patty

      September 2, 2011

  12. What is the colored construction paper for? My guess is that the turtle is cut out and pasted onto a colored background?

    Renata

    December 6, 2011

  13. I work at an English kindergarten in Siberia, of all places, and was recently asked by the school’s director to start teaching art! I had mentioned, in passing, my art history major and some low-level painting classes that I had taken and I suppose she thought it’d be a great idea for me to teach art. Needless to say, I was lost, confused, and terrified and am now slightly less so thanks to your phenomenal site! Thank you for sharing your wonderful creativity.

    M

    August 27, 2012

  14. Thnx i found this as an ideas to my lines and coloring ideas for my pupils in prep. 😉

    rosabella jose fernando

    April 19, 2014

  15. How long did this lesson take with kinder?

    Wendy

    August 4, 2014

  16. I am having problems printing the Turtle project…purchased the Art Curriculum booklet. Is their an additional fee to purchase linked lesson. May be its my printer, yet I have no problem printing the booklet. Any suggestions for my dilemma?

    feelinspirit@aol.com

    October 9, 2013

  17. There are no lessons embedded directly into the workbook, so you must be referring to a link to my DSS site. Sometimes I link to lesson plans that you could purchase or free lessons that have been made available on my site. I can’t help with printing problems, but you might want to copy and paste the text onto a word doc. Hope this helps.

    Patty Palmer

    October 10, 2013

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