- Give children about 30 seconds to look all around the artwork. If possible, pass it around so children can feel and see it up close.
- Write numbers 1-10 on the board or a sheet of paper. Ask the children to help count aloud before beginning the brainstorm activity.
- Encourage students to describe items in the artwork. Model the descriptive language you would like children to use.
- Example: "A blue bird in the sky"
- Once you’ve listed 10 items, pass the artwork around again and encourage children to look really closely to find new things.
- Repeat the same steps to try to get 10 more words or items to describe the art.
- Ask children prompting questions when they are struggling to come up with words.
- What animals do you see?
- What kinds of plants do you see?
- Tell me about the clothes the people are wearing.
TIP: If you are using color copies and not an original art object, have children use removable number stickers to identify 10 things in the art object. Then, have them come up with a word for each numbered item. Remove the stickers and try to find 10 more things. This can be added to a center once children are familiar with the routine.
Related Creative Activities
A Portrait of One’s Own
After spending time exploring aspects of the Ancestor Portrait and the importance of ancestor portraits in the Chinese tradition, students will create an ancestor portrait using mixed media materials and present it to the class.
Combining Human and Animal Forms
Students will use visual observation skills to carefully examine the Assyrian Bird-Headed Deity limestone relief and explore the movement, sounds, and traits of different animals. They will first explore these aspects in humans and birds of prey, as seen in the limestone relief, and will then do the same with “animals” they create from two or more animals. This lesson enables children to draw upon previous knowledge and imagination in order to act out the movement, sounds, and other traits of the animals they create.
If You Give a Man a Horse
Students will read the book If You Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura Numeroff, explore Charles Deas’ painting Long Jakes, and exercise their imaginations to create their own cause-and-effect story.
Let’s Make a Story
This lesson allows students to use their imaginations to identify, explore, and express their understanding of Sandy Skoglund’s Fox Games. They will discuss the imagery as a class and create a group story with each student contributing one sentence about the foxes in the installation.
Designing a Dish
Students will locate different symbols on the Chinese Dish with Eight Buddhist Emblems, then choose three of their favorite symbols to create on their own paper plate dishes.
Memory & Song
Students will list colors, shapes, and images they see in the Malagan figures. The teacher will then put the items on the list into a song (using a familiar tune) to help students remember all that they saw.