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Poinsettia Plant Mixed-Media for Third Grade

This project is as about as easy as you can get. The only area of “struggle” was cutting out the pot. Despite it’s challenges, this component of the project provides a valuable opportunity to understand symmetry.

What you’ll need:

12″ x 18″ white construction/sulphite paper
– 12″ x 18″ Black construction paper
– Tempera Paints (I selected red, yellow, rose, white, etc)
– Sponges cut in “petal” shapes
– 6″ x 6″ colored construction paper
Paint brushes
– Yellow or orange tempera paint
Gold metallic tempera paint
Tissue paper
– Scissors
– White School glue
Glitter

The poinsettia plant…

With a paint brush, add clusters of dots of paint to create the centers of the flowers on the top half of the white paper. The kids can use the backs of the brushes for small dots, or paint larger circles with the bristles.
Using a paintbrush, paint desired color onto a petal-shaped sponge. As the kids get good at this, let them experiment by adding two or more colors to the sponge. Press painted sponge gently on paper, pointing tip of sponge towards the center of the flower. Press sponge again. The paint will begin to weaken after the third or fourth press.

Making the pot…

While the poinsettia dries (I usually put these aside for the next class), bring out the supplies to make the pot.
To make the pot symmetrical, fold the square of paper in half. Now this part is tricky. (I’d recommend trying this yourself so you can pick the right verbiage to teach the kids.)
Start at the bottom of the folded paper (left hand holding the paper and right hand holding scissors or vice-versa for left-handers), begin the cut in the middle of the bottom edge. Cut upwards and on an angle. You might find it easier to cut the notch of the pot out first, then cut the diagonal line.
Open up the fold and you have a perfect pot.
Using a small sponge, dab gold metallic paint onto surface. Let dry.

Adding tissue paper…

Gently fold small squares of tissue paper and tape or glue onto the backs of the pot. The tissue paper should ruffle slightly when the pot is turned over.

Putting it all together…

Now that the poinsettias are dry, cut around the flowers. If a flower is not connected to any of the others and you end up with more than one piece, no problem. The goal is to glue them back together onto a piece of black construction paper.

Glue the flower section to the black paper and then glue the pot with the tissue paper. For an added feature, my students outlined selected areas of their flowers (the dots, the stems, etc) with white glue and we added glitter.
This added a nice holiday touch and a much needed sparkle to our classroom!

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Want more lesson ideas for the holidays? Download this free lesson guide by clicking the yellow button below and I’ll send you my 5 Non-Religious Projects for the Holidays!

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