Pop Art Self Portraits


  • We construct accordion books in the art room, designing everything from the book covers to the stories within. We learn about Book Arts in the art room, and the wide variety of ways artists work with books. To begin, we use a storyboard to plan our book. Students learn about the various genres of books and how to come up with ideas. Often, the unit is in conjunction with instruction delivered by our school librarian. In the past, student themes were drawn from the school-wide theme if there is one. For example, in the past, the "Book of the Season" was "Be Kind", and students wrote a story about a time they were kind. 




  • Typically in third grade, students experience stitching as an art form. They learn that stitching is merely a line made with thread, yarn or embroidery floss. Each student works on a "sampler". The sampler is burlap material. After learning about the "eye" of the needle and trying to thread it with yarn, they also have to tie a knot. Each student will try the following stitches in order to learn how to stitch a line:

    • running stitch - - - - - - -
    • back stitch ------------------
    • couching

    After attempting each of these stitches, students draw a design of their choice and stitch it. They gain confidence, and many will happily try the techniques at home!

Third Grade


    Compliment Hearts

    Students paired up to brainstorm a list of "positive words". These were defined as words you would say when asked to do something, or words that describe a favorite friend. After brainstorming, students wrote the words on hearts they traced onto watercolor paper. They painted them with primary colors, and mixed the primary colors to make secondary colors. This lesson reviewed the units on color families but added the element of mixing the colors we needed.

    student working  close up student working

    students working

    close up close up  

    Pop Art Portraits and Andy Warhol

    Students explore the world of Andy Warhol in the art room. Students learn fun facts about Warhol and create 6 identical portraits, each in a different color scheme. We simulate the act of  working with Warhol in his Factory.


    Students learn about three new color families and review two familiar ones. We also learn how to draw a face using to correct proportions.



    Warm and Cool Color Landscapes

    Third graders learn about landscape and how artists use color to change the mood of a landscape. We start with a lesson on drawing landscapes, in which we draw eight different sketches, fueled by lots of examples.

    Next, we choose our favorite one and trace the pencil lines with black marker.

    We then trace a "copy" of our landscape. We create two abstract versions of our landscape... one in warm colors and one in cool colors. Some students use the window to aid the tracing process.

    We learn about warm colors and how artists use color families to communicate a feeling, region, season, or temperature. Students use oil pastels to add color to their first drawing.

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