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Oil Pastel Sunflower Inspired by Vincent van Gogh

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Par­ents often tell me about the art­work their kids did with me that they have framed and hang­ing in their home. And this is the project that most often earns a per­ma­nent place on the wall! While there’s noth­ing like adding new lessons to keep your cur­ricu­lum fresh and excit­ing, we all have projects that […]

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Colorful Ofrenda Skeletons

Day of the Dead — Ofrenda Painting

The pop­u­lar Mex­i­can hol­i­day, Day of the Dead (or Dia de Los Muer­tos), gives us many oppor­tu­ni­ties for col­or­ful art lessons com­bined with learn­ing about another cul­ture! True con­fes­sion time.… when I moved from a small town in upstate New York to go to col­lege in Cal­i­for­nia, I had no idea what Day of the Dead was.… I […]

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Oil Pastel Flower Inspired by Van Gogh

Oil Pastel Still Life Inspired by Vincent Van Gogh

Stu­dents will be sur­prised to learn that Van Gogh was not pop­u­lar as an artist dur­ing his own life­time.… a great exam­ple that the opin­ions of pop­u­lar cul­ture do not always pre­vail!  This project usu­ally takes 2–3 fifty minute ses­sions to fin­ish, and the results are frame-worthy! Vocab­u­lary: • Vin­cent Van Gogh (1853–1890) — Dutch painter Vin­cent Van Gogh […]

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Oil Pastel Houses Inspired by Marc Chagall

Stu­dents enjoy cre­at­ing these quirky street-scapes inspired by Russ­ian artist, Marc Cha­gall.  There’s just some­thing really fun about crooked build­ings and ran­dom things fly­ing through the air! Mate­ri­als: 12x18 black con­struc­tion paper #2 Pen­cil with pink eraser (the eraser is handy for “sketch­ing” your lay­out!) Oil Pas­tels “Wet wipes” for clean up Exam­ples of the paint­ings of Marc […]

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Oil Pastel Cat inspired by Laurel Burch

Oil Pastel Cats Inspired by Laurel Burch

What’s not to love about these whim­si­cal, col­or­ful cats inspired by San Fran­cisco artist, Lau­rel Burch? This fun project can be adapted to most any age group.… the exam­ples here were done by my 4th graders. My stu­dents always enjoy learn­ing about the lives of famous artists, and the story of pro­lific artist Lau­rel Burch […]

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5th Grade/Middle School Masterpiece Mosaic of "Starry Night" by Vincent Van Gogh

Masterpiece Mosaics: a Collaborative Art Project for Grades K — 8

These col­or­ful projects, which I call “Mas­ter­piece Mosaics”, were a col­lab­o­ra­tive effort by my stu­dents in grades K through mid­dle school. Each grade level cre­ated their own copy of a famous paint­ing — six mas­ter­pieces in all, on dis­play now through Christ­mas at our local art store. These were really pretty easy to do, and […]

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Monarch Butterflies with Oil Pastel

Every fall, thou­sands of Monarch but­ter­flies con­verge on the euca­lyp­tus grove at a nearby park as they migrate to warmer cli­mates.  What bet­ter way to pre­pare our Kinders for their annual field trip to view this spec­tac­u­lar dis­play than with this col­or­ful Monarch oil pas­tel project!  Fol­low the steps below to make your own magnificent […]

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