Dot Monsters!

Dot Mon­sters are a per­fect activ­ity to teach to the whole class or use with those “early fin­ish­ers” who end up with free time after com­plet­ing a project. Kids from 1st grade through 6th grade love mak­ing these! Dot Mon­sters nur­ture imag­i­na­tion and encour­age cre­ative think­ing and prob­lem solv­ing.… and they’re FUN!

Here’s how you make them:

1. Any size paper will work for this activ­ity, but I usu­ally use 9x12 or 12x18. With your eyes closed, use a Sharpie (“fine” point) to place 30 dots ran­domly all over your paper. (Older stu­dents may use up to 50 dots, as in the exam­ple above.) Remind stu­dents that they only need to press lightly to make their dots! (A “Magic Rub” eraser will quickly remove any stray Sharpie marks from desks!)

2. Next, con­nect your dots with straight lines to make one com­plete shape. When stu­dents try this for the first time, you may want to have them use a pen­cil to con­nect their dots and then trace their lines with a Sharpie, until they under­stand the con­cept of mak­ing one com­plete shape.

3. Then, turn your paper dif­fer­ent direc­tions and use your imag­i­na­tion until you “see” a mon­ster in one of the shapes!

4. Finally, add details to your draw­ing to help oth­ers “see” your mon­ster, too! When you first teach this les­son, it might help to brain­storm char­ac­ter­is­tics of a mon­ster and write ideas on the board. (horns, sharp teeth, scales, wings, fur, claws, spikes, etc.) Encour­age your stu­dents to add a back­ground and lots of color, too.

5. You can also include a fun writ­ing activ­ity if you want. It could be a sim­ple “fill in the blanks” form about your monster, or a more elab­o­rate story. Here’s an exam­ple to go with the mon­ster pic­tured here: “My monster’s name is the Two-Headed Party Ani­mal. It lives in Paris. It eats bal­loons and cake. It likes to do the Hokey-Pokey.“

Have fun mak­ing
Dot Mon­sters, but don’t be sur­prised when you see them turn­ing up on every avail­able scrap of paper, when­ever your stu­dents have a few min­utes to spare!

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6 Responses to Dot Monsters!

  1. Ms. Julie's Place March 12, 2009 at 9:13 am #

    I love includ­ing writ­ing activ­i­ties with art projects. I have found it sort of frees up those reluc­tant writ­ers. A pic­ture is worth a 1000 words!

  2. JuniperKberry May 7, 2009 at 11:18 am #

    I used this as a “fin­ished early” activ­ity with third, fourth and fifth grades. BIG HIT! I need a quick project for fourth tomor­row, so I think we will try the alpha­bet let­ter project. Thanks for the inspiration!

  3. R Lennon October 4, 2009 at 9:19 am #

    I am def­i­nitely going to try this!

  4. Charline February 6, 2010 at 9:44 am #

    Love your blog…

    Check out the my art room website. :)

    http://web.me.com/charlinelking/Glacier_Peak_Art_Room/Welcome.html

  5. TeachKidsArt February 6, 2010 at 3:36 pm #

    Thanks, Char­line! I love your site, too! I added it to my list of “Cre­ative Sites I Love”.… can’t wait to try some of your fun ideas!! :)

  6. JoAnn Kuhn March 6, 2013 at 12:02 am #

    I used this to enter­tain sev­eral boys I was pro­vid­ing child­care for on a vol­un­teer basis while their par­ents were tak­ing a class. They loved it!

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