Santa Barbara Mission Paintings

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The Santa Barbara Mission is perched on top of a gentle hill over looking the city and the distant ocean. An extensive rose garden offers the visitor a place to picnic, play and enjoy the Spanish architecture of the mission. This is my city. The weather is glorious and I imagine the Spanish Franciscans who founded the mission in 1786 thought so, too. Three adobe churches were constructed on the … Read More →

America’s Southwest Landscapes

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Bryce Canyon and Arches National Park in Utah offers the most humbling panoramas. Majestic rock formations, iron-rich colors and endless blue skies are an artist’s dream. These landscapes in my newest PDF offers the student artist a glimpse into the magic of Utah. In this 15-page lesson plan, students learn how to draw a landscape focusing on perspective and space to create distance. Students use chalk and oil pastels to draw … Read More →

American Flag Art Project

american flag art project

What can you do with a box of paper scraps and 40 minutes? An American Flag Collage, of course! My Kinders drew a box and lines on a piece of 12″ x 18″ white paper and then filled the square with torn blue scraps of paper. They added red papers of all textures and shades to the stripes. This was a great exercise in fine motor skills as the children … Read More →

Liberty Bell Art Project

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Looking for an easy Liberty Bell art project? This lesson leans more towards craft than art but many standards are reinforced: composition, history, tracing/cutting, and color mixing. To start, my students sponge painted a piece of 12″ x 9″ paper with blue, red and white paint. I provided the paint, but left the children to create whatever background they wanted. Some smeared the paint over the paper with the sponge … Read More →

James Rizzi Skyscraper Art Lesson

Rizzi-Skyscraper-art-lesson

James Rizzi has left his mark on the world. His amazing illustrations has made an indelible impression on me and my students. Last Fall, my sixth graders did a unit on James Rizzi which included Faces and Simple Birds. This time we had fun with James Rizzi Inspired Skyscrapers. This is a super easy lesson for older students. 100% fun and successful. The technique is simple: oil pastel and watercolors. … Read More →

American Indian Art Lesson Plans

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Learning how art impacts every culture and civilization in the world is an important part of any art curriculum. I remember learning about Canada’s native population in second grade. Making igloos from marshmallows and creating my own “Eskimo” paper doll remains my most vivid childhood art experience. The art hasn’t changed much, but the verbiage has. The National Museum of the American Indian was a tremendous help in sorting out commonly … Read More →

Grand Canyon Painting Lesson

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Here is another lesson inspiration from the book,  Wow! America! by Robert Neubecker. A journey across the United States brings us to the great Grand Canyon. Layers of rock, canyons and eroded arches appear endless, broken up only by the slight variations of colors. This lesson focuses on creating depth in a picture. The concept here, near and far can be used or simply the foreground, mid-ground and the background. The results … Read More →