Dr. Seuss Day: One Fish Two Fish Art Project

Here is a great Dr. Seuss Day art project for your little ones. Inspired by my favorite “One Fish Two Fish”, this lesson is perfect for any lower elementary grade including Kinders. If you need more Dr. Seuss-inspired lessons, check out The Members Club.

A fun drawing and painting Dr. Seuss day art project to do with your kids


  • 2 @ 12″ x 18″ white paper
  • black oil pastel
  • blue, yellow, green and red tempera paint
  • glitter and glue

Drawing the Fish

The younger the student, the more time you’ll need demonstrating eye placement. I like to have the kids point to where the eye should go and then when they get a thumbs-up from me, they are free to draw a black dot. Here’s my thinking: The children can’t erase the oil pastels, so you want to make certain they leave ample room to draw the body or else the fish might be small.
Starting at the far left (if they chose a swimming fish) or near the top (standing fish) gives the children plenty of space to draw the body.

I point out the different fish illustrations in the first few pages of the book One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish, then on the white board, I draw two styles of fish: one swimming across the paper (horizontal) and one standing up (vertical). I do a directed line drawing for both.

One Fish Two Fish

Draw two dots for eyes for standing fish or one dot for swimming

Add a circle around the eye(s) and add eyelashes if you wish

Standing: Draw a curved line over the top of the eyes and move the line all the way down the paper and curve up like a letter “J” . Then, draw a similar line on the opposite side and join together at the tail.

Swimming: starting in front of the eye, move the pastel along the top of the paper to form an arch, then make another line starting at the eye draw a line around the bottom of the paper towards the tail. Both lines can be wiggly or curved. Whatever you like!

For the standing fish make fins and add lines inside the body for scales. Do the same for the swimming fish and add a funny looking tail.

Pretty basic instructions, but if you look at the kids drawing you’ll see that any shape will do. Just have fun!

Painting the fish

Use red, yellow, green and blue tempera paint colors to paint inside each shape. It helps too add a bit of liquid white tempera paint to both the yellow and the blue to soften the colors. The blue straight out of the container can be very dark and cover the oil pastel lines too well.

Once the painting dries, trace over the lines with black oil pastel and add some patterns with other colors of oil pastel if you wish.

Cut out the fish. This is a great project for practicing cutting skills!

Creating the Background

Take the other white paper and paint stripes from one side to the other. If you wish, you can glam up your Dr. Seuss art project by adding some glitter. While the stripes are still wet, sprinkle with glitter and shake excess off into a big tub. No glue is needed.

Finally, glue fish to background!

Kinder One Fish Two Fish!

Want more Dr. Seuss lessons? Download this free PDF by clicking the yellow box below and we’ll send you a lesson on how to draw Cat in the Hat! Or click HERE for another free lesson on Dr. Seuss Day Art Activities.


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