Wednesday, March 18, 2015

The Grouchy Ladybug

3 Class Periods
The Grouchy Ladybug, Kindergarten Art Lesson

About the Artist:

Students learned about artist and writer Eric Carle.  Eric Carle was born June 25, 1929 in New York. At the age of six he moved to Germany and did not move back to the United States until the age of 23. He quickly found a job as a graphic designer for The New York Times.  His work for The Times was noticed by author Bill Martin, Jr. who asked Carle for help in illustrating a children's book called Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? (1967)  A few years later, Eric started his career by illustrating and writing his first book The Very Hungry Caterpillar (1969).  The artist is still alive today and has written over 70 children's books.
Eric Carle
Day 1:
I read to students the story A House for Hermit Crab by Eric Carle.   We examine the pictures closely and discuss the colors and textures we see within the artwork.  During this time, I really do not give students too much information about Eric Carle.  I instead emphasize that we will be making pretty paper like we see in the story to create a picture of our own for our next time in art together.

I divide students up in groups.  I give each group a large piece of white paper and pour paint on each piece of paper.  Students are allowed to use foam brushes, scrapers, rollers and their hands to paint with.  Once the paint starts to cover most of the paper I layer the paper with a second color that can easily mix with the first.  I don't need to tell you how the students squeal with excitement over this. The pieces are then set off to the side to dry as clean up takes place.

The colors that I have students create are red (orange or pink is the second color that we mix with it), black (which has purple or blue added to it), green (blue or yellow is added as the second color) and purple (white is added).
Students making paste paper.

Day 2:
I share with students a brief PowerPoint about artist and writer Eric Carle.  Students become very excited about this artist because so many of them have heard or read an Eric Carle story.  Students become even more fascinating when they learn that Eric Carle not only writes the stories but creates the pictures for his books.  

We examine his technique of creating hand-painted papers and how he cuts and layers these papers to create his collage like pictures.

I then read The Grouchy Ladybug by Eric Carle to the students.  After the story, we discuss how we made our special paste paper and compare it how Eric Carle makes his paste paper.

Together as a class we begin to make our own version of the grouchy ladybug.
Students creating ladybugs from the paste paper they created.
Day 3:
We use the last day as a day to add the finishing details to our ladybug.  This usually consists of the spots, legs and face.  For students that finish early, I have a variety of Eric Carle books for them to look at and a few Eric Carle activity sheets for them to work on.

Student Examples:

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