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The 7 Elements of Art and How-to Teach them

You might be asking, What are the 7 Elements of Art and How Do I Teach Them? The Elements 7 Elements of Art are: Line, Value, Color, Space, Shape, Form, and Texture and they are the foundations or building blocks that artists use to make art. Let’s dive in and learn about the 7 Elements of Art, Which You Should Teach First, and How to Teach them.


What are the 7 Elements of Art and How do I Teach them?

The Elements of Art are the Foundations or building blogs of artworks and creating Visual Art. The 7 Elements of Art are: Line, Value, Color, Space, Shape, Form, and Texture. The Elements of Art are used by Artists to Create Art and are essential for your students to know and learn how to use so they have the tools needed for making art. Let’s dive into the 7 Elements of Art and Learn How to Teach them.


What are the 7 Elements of Art?

The 7 Elements of Art are: Line, Value, Color, Space, Shape, Form, and Texture.

Line: Line is described as a moving dot. It is the most basic element of drawing and can be used to create shapes, contours, can vary in thickness and texture, can be used for shading, and create texture. Lines can be horizontal, vertical, zig zag, curved and even a variety of lengths.


Color: Color is the Element of Art that involves reflected light. When light reflects off an object, a hue is produced. Colors can be Primary, Secondary, or Tertiary. Colors can also be placed in Color Schemes such as Warm, Cool, or Neutral.


Value: Value is the Element of Art that describes the relative lightness or darkness of a color. Value can be created with tints, tones, and shades.


Shape: Shape is the Element of Art that describes enclosed two-dimensional areas. Shapes can be geometrical or organic in nature.


Form: Form is the Element of Art that describes an actual three-dimensional shape or the illusion that it is three-dimensional. They have volume & take up space.


Space: Space is the Element of Art that is used to create the illusion of depth on a two-dimensional surface. Space can be created with a variety of strategies including linear perspective, overlapping, size, and placement in relation to a horizon line.


Texture: Texture is the Element of Art that is associated with the way a surface feels or how it might feel if it were to be touched. Texture can be soft, rough, smooth, fuzzy, etc.


What Elements of Art Should I Teach First?

I am quite often asked this question. What Elements of Art should I Teach first? Everyone has their own opinion but I have my own and I teach it in this way because the early ones are needed for creating the ones learned later. For instance, you need to know value and line to create both Form and Texture. This is my order for which I teach the Elements of Art and I go more in depth on this in my FREE Elements of Art Pro-D webinar that you can register for and watch online at your convenience.

The order I Teach the Elements of Art is: Line, Value, Color, Shape, Form, Space, and Texture. In my opinion, this order is easiest for children to understand and provides a natural progression of building blocks.


What is the Easiest Element of Art to Teach?

I also get this question asked often and it really ties into the order I teach the Elements of Art. I teach easiest to hardest because it not only makes sense and provides scaffolding for the Elements of Art, but also I believe in building student’s confidence rather than crushing them at the starting line (for this reason, Texture is the last one I teach). And speaking of Line, I always start with the Element of Art Line and believe it is the Easiest Element of Art to Teach because line is a moving dot and can be created in many ways by all ages. It is accessible and is needed for creating and understanding the other Elements of Art. After that, I teach Value because it is simple, then I teach Color.


Embed the Elements of Art into All Art Lessons

Any time you’re teaching drawing or art, no matter what, it is an opportunity to teach or reinforce the Elements of Art and show it in action. Outside of teaching art lessons that focus on an element of Art or teaching a full unit, I believe in talking about Elements of Art as I use them in any art project. if I am creating a summer artwork but am only using warm colors, I will point that out during my demonstration and talk about color and Warm color schemes and how warm colors make us feel. I don’t have to go crazy on it, but you can definitely do a think-pair-share or do a 5 minute classroom discussion or just mention it to reinforce it to your students. It is like test prep but all the time so that is solidified in your student’s minds and they can see it in action.

Essentially, you’re making your thinking visible to your students and are showing them intentions behind what your doing and showing them how the Elements of Art are used as building blocks in ANY artwork.

Another way to do this is to view historical artworks and ask students: “What Elements of Art do you see? Let’s do a think-pair-share (think to self, whisper to buddy beside you, share out to whole class)”.

La Berceuse (Woman Rocking a Cradle; Augustine-Alix Pellicot Roulin, 1851–1930), Vincent van Gogh, 1889
La Berceuse (Woman Rocking a Cradle; Augustine-Alix Pellicot Roulin, 1851–1930), Vincent van Gogh, 1889
3 Free Ms Artastic Art Lessons for your Classroom!

Click here to download my Free Art Projects that you can use in your classroom!

Where to Find Elements of Art Lessons, Projects, and Resources

You can find ready-to-use Elements of Art Lessons in a few places, all of which will allow you go go breadth and in depth on the Elements of Art so that you can teach them confidently and stress-free .

1) Free Elements of Art Webinar (Online Pro-D Resource): Gain valuable insight for teaching the Elements of Art to your students! I will talk about the order in which I teach the Elements & provide you with ideas for art lessons you can do for each Element. Pro-D Certificate included with workshop. *Special Bonuses included! SIGN UP NOW

2) Find Elements of Art Projects, Lessons, and Resources: You can find easy-to-use Elements of Art Resources in the Ms Artastic TeachersPayTeachers store. I highly recommend looking at the Elements of Art category for all my Elements of Art resources that includes everything from workbooks, task cards, art lessons, and full art units on each of the Elements of Art.

3) Find them in the Artastic Collective Art Curriculum: If you’re looking for a more complete solution, you can get a fully planned Art Curriculum that includes my Elements of Art resources at the Artastic Collective. Enrollment only opens twice a year so it is essential that you get on the waitlist so you’re ready to join when it is open. Make sure you click here to learn more about this life-changing Art Curriculum designed for Art Education.


What are the 7 Elements of Art and How do I Teach them?

The 7 Elements of Art are: Line, Value, Color, Shape, Form, Space, and Texture. Remember that these are essential for your students to know and learn how to use because they will provide a solid foundation for creating their own artworks. Remember to teach What the 7 Elements Are, Teach the Element of Art Line first, then teach Value and Color next, Embed the Elements into ALL your art lessons, then grab some Elements of Art resources to teach confidently in your classroom.

Elements of Art Workbooks K-12

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You might be asking, What are the 7 Elements of Art and How Do I Teach Them? The Elements 7 Elements of Art are: Line, Value, Color, Space, Shape, Form, and Texture and they are the foundations or building blocks that artists use to make art. Let's dive in and learn about the 7 Elements of Art, Which You Should Teach First, and How to Teach them.

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