I love letting kids explore the Elements of Art through Choice-Based strategies when introducing them to my class. In this article I will dive in on 3 Elements of Art Choice-Based Art Lesson Ideas or Activities that you can use in your classroom right away. Low prep and high engagement, here we go! Better yet, they allow for some fabulous choice-based opportunities to start the year off flexible in your classroom. BONUS… Scroll to the bottom to snag my FREE Elements of Art Printable Choice Board. Let’s get into it!
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Virtual Museum Visit to Explore the Elements of Art
This idea is a great way to have students actively searching for the Elements of Art like a scavenger hunt but also asks them to look at artworks of art history.
Before you start the lesson, I would write a list of all the element of art on the board and talk about what each one is. If you have elements of art posters in your room, these would make fabulous reference for your students to look at while you do this lesson.
After teaching or reviewing each of the elements, go onto a museum website that offers a virtual tour. Lots have this option, including Google Arts and Culture.
Talk them on a tour of the museum to look at art. Their job is to, like a scavenger hunt, find the elements of art in artworks. Once they find one, they can write the element down (example: line), then draw a thumbnail sketch of the artwork OR write the name of the artwork, depending on the age or how much time you have.
This way you’re not only looking at art, but kids are learning the names of famous artists and artworks, are viewing art, and art relating the elements of art to them being used in artworks. This will help them learn about them a lot quicker and you’ll have a low-prep, high impact art lesson.
Identity Portraits for Element of Art Line art activity
The next idea is that students can create a self-portrait of themselves in a choice art making medium. I recommended taking a picture of each student and printing it out (black and white is fine). just so they have something to reference when they illustrate themselves. I also encourage allowing students to add their own artist flavor, meaning they do not necessarily have to replicate the portrait and can, if they choice, design their self portrait in their own choice of style. This is your choice ultimately and you have to decide how much control you want over it. Keep in mind that it is only back to school and there is time for creating detailed, realistic portraits later and honestly, in my opinion, it is better to earn trust and respect and have them to buy into art in the beginning.
Next, have the students fill in the surrounding area around their portrait with lines or patterns created with lines. You can do simple lines for primaries or zentangle for middle schoolers, or for high school they can create a pattern of Celtic knots throughout the entire background. They can use line to help place Emphasis on their self portrait!
Element of Art Space: Hallway Perspective Drawings
Have your students grab “something to draw with and something to draw on” and take them to a hallway. For this art lesson, you can teach Perspective then have students explore it by making observational drawings of the hallway using one-point or two-point perspective techniques to explore creating depth on a 2D piece of paper. This is a great way for students to practice observational drawing while also exploring the Element of Art, Space.
FREE Elements of Art Printable Choice Board Art Resource
Alright so I know you have been waiting for this one! This is my FREE Printable, Elements of Art Choice board that you can print and use in your classroom! I love to use Choice boards or bell ringers, “when you’re done” tasks, laminate them for an art center, or even use them as the assignment and you can decide if kids will complete 1, 2,4, etc. Best of all, no mediums are listed or paper so you can choose the mediums or give the choice to your students!
Elements of Art, Art Resources for Homeschool or a Classroom
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Kathleen McGiveron (Ms Artastic)
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