Saturday, February 28, 2015

Symmetrical Turtles

2 Class Periods
Symmetrical Turtles, Kindergarten Art Lesson
Day 1:
We begin this lesson by looking at numerous photographs of turtles.  I want my students to be familiar with the parts of the turtle (legs, tail, shell, head, designs and patterns on the shell, etc.).  We briefly discuss where one can find turtles and any other interesting facts they know about turtles.

Together as a class we create a turtle out of construction paper.

The first piece of construction paper they select is the shell color.  This piece is 6 x 9 inches and I have multiple colors for the students to choose from ranging from pink to green.   I inform the students that their turtle can be any color they like.  Students round the corners to create an oval.

Students then pick 2 pieces of 4 x 6 inch construction paper, again in the color of their choice.  The pieces can be the same color or different.  I demonstrate to students on how to place the strips on top each other, fold them in half, cut the top two corners, open the paper and then cut on the fold to create the 4 legs for the turtle.

At this point in the lesson, we pause to discuss symmetry.  I call a student up to the front of the class and demonstrate to the rest of the class how we are symmetrical.  I hold a yard stick in front of the student dividing them in half lengthwise.  We discuss how on each side there is one leg, one arm, one ear, one eye and we discuss why there is only half a nose and half a mouth on each side.

We then move back to our turtle construction by gluing the legs on so they are symmetrical.

Students next take another piece of 4 x 6 inch paper, again in a color of their own choosing.  We round off the top two corners and glue this to the top center of the shell.  This becomes the turtle's head.  As students are working on this, I go around and mark a letter "X" on the messy side of the shell.  This is the side where you can see how everything is attached.
This is the messy side of the turtle.
The last piece of the turtle is the tail.  We scan our table scraps for any pieces that resembles a triangle and glue it to the center bottom of the shell.

The last few steps for the day, involve the students gluing their turtle to a 12 x 12 piece of white tag board.  Thanks to the "X" I placed on the shell, students know this is the side to place the glue on. Students use a blue marker to create water ripples around the turtle.  Using 3DO's I attached wiggly eyes to each turtle.
This is what the piece looks like at the end of day 1.
Day 2:
On the second day of this lesson, we discuss symmetry even further.  I demonstrate to students how to cut numerous shapes out of paper and how to fold their paper when they cut to ensure they get two identical pieces.

Students are required to have at least 8 to 10 shapes attached to their paper.  I give each student a ruler so they can check their symmetry as they work.  (They hold the ruler in the center of the turtle to form a line and look on each side to make sure it is the same).  I encourage students to be creative with their shapes, color selections and to play with overlapping within their designs.

Examples of Student Work:

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