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!