Peacock Art Project for First Grade


Peacocks are truly glorious. I saw one roaming around on a recent trip to Maui. Just sauntering along…not a care in the world. I experimented a bit with this lesson before introducing it to my first grade classes. I tried cutting the peacock out (reinforces cutting skills) but this would involve an additional step of gluing the peacock onto another sheet of paper.

Instead, I painted the peacock onto a large sheet of paper. The large paper size was a big thrill for the kids (18″ x 24″) but truly, I think the project would be equally as impressive and fun for the kids with a smaller sized paper.

Here’s what you need…

  • Black Oil Pastel
  • 18″ x 24″ Construction Paper (I used green)
  • Gold, bronze, blue and red metallic liquid tempera paint (use metallic oil pastels or even metallic crayons for the same effect…or perhaps foil wrapping paper.)
  • Green, light blue and navy blue liquid tempera paint
  • Scrap piece of white paper
  • Brushes and damp sponges

Drawing the Peacock


Using the black oil pastel, begin by drawing a dot or small circle near the bottom of the paper. This will be the eye. Here’s a trick for good eye placement: set your hand flat on the bottom of the paper with your thumb touching the bottom edge. Then, where your pinky touches the paper, draw a dot for the eye.

Draw a body around the eye. Add legs. Add bumps behind the body and finally, add big, big feathers extending all the way to the outside edges of the paper.

Painting the Peacock

Paint the body with one color of metallic paint and the bumpy feathers another color.
Paint the long feathers using one or two colors (i.e. light blue and green). Then, with the third color, paint the veins of the feathers. Since the paint is wet, the blues and greens will blend together creating beautiful turquoises and deep shades.
Adding the “Eyes”
Using a scrap piece of white paper, draw a bunch of concentric circles using black oil pastels. Paint the circles with red and blue metallic paint. Cut out and paste on peacock.
First Graders proudly displayed their beautiful peacocks…

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  • Mary

    These look great! Love the colors!

  • Nf1andprek-whisper

    i have written to you before I love love your ideas, I am doing a famous women hero's unit any ideas? anyway I am going to try to buy the unit with the matruska doll ( spelled it wrong sorry) as I love doing units about them, and the art project would be great, How do you set up a add to cart to your webpage? I am selling my lesson's on certain subjects ( not art) and I have no idea how to get it on my blog LOL

  • Will F

    peacocks are one of those creatures you don't hear much about so I love this project!

  • Liberty

    Yesterday my DD asked to make a peacock for an art project… I had a general idea in my head but hopped online to see what I could come up with. I stumbled upon your blog and LOVE IT!!! Love this projest and am looking forward to doing this with my DD later this week!

    You are now in my favorites line up and I am looking forward to looking over your site some more 🙂

  • Kristin

    I am going to adapt this lesson for Thanksgiving and make it a turkey. The gold really makes it special! Thanks for the idea.

  • anne

    Hi Patty!
    I have already purchased so many of your art ideas…..I love the fresh take on subjects and I know my parents do as well. We are currently studying countries where the emphasis isn’t just on the country (social studies) but on the presentation. Many of the students used an art lesson that represents their country (Mexico and poinsettias; Kenya and dancing giraffe etc). The information reaches so many students this way. Thanks and Cheers!

    • Patty

      Thanks! Love this concept!

  • alicebugni@hotmail.com

    Where can I access Podcasts on your website, Deep Space Sparkle? Or better yet, save them to Pinterest? I’d like to be able to go back to this cute peacock lesson @ my leisure. Thanks!

    • Patty Palmer

      Hi Alice,
      A podcast is a free radio show that you can listen to via your computer or through iTunes. It won’t contain lesson plans. You’ll be able to pin the cover image of the podcast but that’ about it. As for the peacock lesson, you may pin any image to Pinterest. If you hover your mouse over any image, a P will show up. Just click on that.

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