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Sunset Cityscapes

Sunset Cityscapes

The examples in this post were done by 1st graders, but older kids will enjoy this, too. “No Rulers Allowed!”…. if you want results that are charming and almost “Seuss-like”! For a typical class that meets for one hour or less, you’ll want to do this project over 2 class periods. Materials: 9×12 watercolor paper (or heavyweight construction […]

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Basic Japanese Notan Design for Grades 1 and Up - great for practicing cutting and gluing!

Basic Japanese Notan Designs for 1st Grade & Up

Are you looking for an easy project that will give your youngest students more practice with scissors? This very basic Japanese Notan lesson is perfect for working on cutting and gluing skills, and kids will love the striking designs they create! Notan is a type of Japanese art that uses the contrast of light and dark to make an eye-catching composition. (Pronounce it just like it […]

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Notan Ornament back

Christmas in July! Japanese Notan-Inspired Ornaments

Even though Christmas falls on the same day every year, it still manages to sneak up on me! Why is that??! My best intentions are always to post some new Christmas art projects & ideas a month or two ahead of time, but then the busyness of the season just gets the best of me! […]

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Collage 2 w/Positive and Negative Shapes

Basic Collage with Positive and Negative Shapes

I do this project with my first graders every year to help them understand the concept of positive and negative shapes.  This project also teaches symmetry and offers important practice in cutting on a fold and applying glue.  First graders are often surprised by the shapes they see when they unfold their papers – they […]

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Mexican Papel Picado

“Papel Picado”, or “cut paper”, is a colorful decoration found at most Mexican celebrations. The “secret” of success for making your own papel picado is to sandwich the thin tissue paper inside a folded, heavier weight paper before cutting it. This makes it easier to work with, less likely to tear, and gives you a […]

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Cursive Cut-outs

I posted this lesson awhile back as “Name Aliens”, but I’ve since figured out a better way to teach this, so I improved the directions. As soon as kids can write their names in cursive, they’re ready to create these whimsical creatures! To make “bugs”, just add six legs instead of two! (Adapted from the […]

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Recycled Magazine Flowers

Here is another unique project that we used for Mother’s Day cards, but would be fun to do anytime! I saw this featured on the One Pretty Thing site, from Family Fun. My 5th graders had a blast making these (even the boys, who usually resist anything to do with flowers!) and it gave me […]

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