Harry Wong
Oct 2017
Vol 14 No 3

2 Art Activities: Arrow to the Sun and Impressionist Painting

By Teachers.Net News Desk

by Barb Gilman

Project: Art activity using the book Arrow to the Sun by Gerald McDermott.

Objective: Warm Colors, Angular Shapes, Straight Lines

Medium: crayons

Materials: 8 1/2 by 11 inch white construction paper, 3 warm color crayons

Background: When looking around the natural world, artists may use colors that give a warm feel. These colors may include red-violet, red, red-orange, orange, yellow-orange and yellow. Lines may be straight. Shapes may be angular.

Procedure: The teacher will begin the lesson by reading the story Arrow to the Sun by Gerald McDermott.

Arrow to the Sun: A Pueblo Indian Tale
by Gerald McDermott

$6.49 from
More information

While reading the story, take time to point out the beautiful illustrations. After reading the story, discuss what colors and shapes were used in the story.

What colors are considered warm?

What makes a line straight?

What makes a shape angular?

At this point, each student picks out 3 warm color crayons to use. Each child is then given a white piece of construction paper.

The student begins by drawing a circle, anywhere on the page, with one of their warm color crayons. This circle may be in the middle, the right or on the left side of the paper. From this circle, they will draw lines radiating from the circle. They will then fill up the whole area with lines, angular shapes and designs. The goal is that the sun and each ray will be filled with unique designs. At this point, the teacher may refer back to the book to show the type of designs Gerald McDermott used.

Technique to explore: When coloring very hard and fast, the students may notice that their colors ‘sing’! After the project is complete and no white space is left on the paper, the student may take a tissue and rub it over the entire paper to make it very shiny.

Optional: While the students are working on their project, Native American music can be played. Or Native American storyteller tape, such as The Boy who Lived with the Bear as told by Joe Bruchac.  [Read on for another Art activity, Impressionist Painting.]

Impressionist Painting

Susan Nixon – 2nd grade 

In preparation for our visit to a Monet exhibit in Phoenix, I had our retired art teacher come in to do some special projects with my second graders. She had prepared quite a few things for teaching at the museum.

I just had to share this first one, because anyone can do it, and it was fabulous! You might want to give students a little background on impressionist painting – painting what you feel instead of exactly what you see. Monet painted his garden at Giverney many times, including his Japanese bridge, the rose trellis, the lily pads, etc.

On fingerpaint paper, the students draw with pencil, putting in the major things they want to show up. Then the students use markers to color in everything – don’t color things solidly. If it’s water, make it go only side to side.

On 12 x 18 paper, spray water (just from a squeeze bottle thing), smooth the water over all the paper, then put the marker picture face down. Smooth over the back of the paper, peel up and you have a great impressionist painting!

We framed ours in construction paper and displayed them as an art show for parents during conference time. [Visit the Art Education Chatboard for more great ideas and to share yours!]



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This entry was posted on Monday, April 1st, 2013 and is filed under *ISSUES, April 2013, Teachers.Net Resources. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.
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