First Grade

Essential Questions: 

  • Where can we find art?
  • Can art help me understand other subjects?

  • How does an artist use art to communicate?

  • How am I using shape in my artwork?

  • How and where do artists get their ideas?

  • Why create art?

  • What makes my art look good?

  • What do you think the artist was trying to say?

  • How did you make your artwork meaningful?

  • How did you communicate your ideas through your artwork?


  • Elements of Art and Principles of Design

  • Colors: primary, secondary, warm and cool

  • Lines and shapes

  • Textures and patterns

  • Positive and negative space in 2-D and 3-D works of art

  • Careers in art

  • Sculpture and 3-D works of art in a variety of materials

  • Identify landscape, portrait, still life, self portraits.

  • Introduce artists and cultures


  • Use the Elements of Art and the Principles of Design to create a cohesive composition.

  • Use a variety of line to create texture.

  • Mix secondary/intermediate colors using primary colors.

  • Create an artwork using background, middleground, and foreground.

  • Create tints and shades.

  • Create 2-D and 3-D works of art.

  • Create a one-point perspective artwork.

  • Create a mixed media artwork.

  • Create pattern using a variety of line and shapes.

 Suggested Projects:

  • Create a Collage Self Portrait.

  • Compare Matisse and Van Gogh flowers in a vase using a Double Bubble map.

  • Koi Fish painting (pastel resist)

  • Shape Landscapes

  • Robert Delauney Shape paintings

  • Color Mixing Primary to Secondary and paint a picture with the colors you mixed.

  • James Rizzi Birds

  • Joan Miro’ Crazy line to critter drawing

  • Personal Sketchbook

  • Giraffes Can’t Dance inspired dancing giraffes

  • Texture Pendants

  • Pinch Pot Penguin

  • Panda with bamboo painting

  • Cardinals on a snow covered branch

  • Movement drawings Keith Haring

  • Clay Pinch Pots

  • Origami Animals

  • Hopper inspired Seascape

  • Introduce cultures of world…Africa, Asia, Latino, Australia, etc.
  • Van Gogh inspired landscape using  construction paper crayons on black paper

  • Patterned farm landscapes inspired by American farmland photographs and Grant Wood

  • Positive and Negative Warhol inspired stamped hands

  • Create a digital portfolio to document art throughout year.

  • Student chooses their favorite artwork from their sketchbook and explains why it’s their favorite.

  • Observe, discuss and critique works of famous works of art.

  • Have students create unique and personal titles for art works.

  • Have students fill out a personal rubric to evaluate their own work.

  • Display authentic work throughout school, district, and community.

  • Listen to music and create an abstract composition using Elements of Art and Principles of Design.

 Response Assessment:

  • What makes my work original?

  • How does my work express my emotions?

  • What is the main idea in the work of art?

  • What inspires me?

  • How is your artwork meaningful?

  • How does the artwork express ideas about the community?

  • Can art express the hidden emotions of a person?

  • How does the artwork represent a moment in time?



(1) The student expands visual literacy skills, utilizing critical thought, imagination, and the senses, to observe and explore the world by learning, understanding and applying the Elements of Art and Principles of Design. Students use what they see, know and have experienced as sources for examining understanding and creating artworks.

(A) Identify similarities, differences and variations among subjects in the environment, using the senses.

(B) Identify the Elements of Art, including line, shape, color, texture, and form and The Principles of Design including emphasis, pattern/ repetition and balance, in nature and in the human-made environment.


Creative Expression

(2) The students communicate their imaginative thoughts and ideas by challenging their creativity in producing original artworks and solving art problems using a variety of media with appropriate and progressive skills.

(A)   Invent images that combine a variety of lines, shapes, colors, texture and forms.

(B)   Place components in orderly arrangement to create designs.

(C)   Increase manipulative skills necessary for using a variety of materials to produce drawings, paintings, prints, constructions and sculptures, including modeled forms.


Historical/ Cultural Heritage

(3) The Student demonstrates an understanding of Art history and culture by analyzing artists styles, historical periods and a variety of cultures. Students develop global awareness and respect for the traditions and contributions of diverse cultures.

(A) Identify simple ideas expressed in artwork through different media.

(B) Demonstrate an understanding that Art is created globally by all people throughout time.

(C) Discuss the use of art in everyday life.

(D) Relate visual art concepts to other disciplines.


Evaluation and Response

(4) The students respond to and analyze artworks of self and others, contributing to the development of lifelong skills of making informed judgments and reasoned evaluations.

(A) Explain ideas about personal artworks.

(B) Identify ideas found in collections as real or virtual art museums, galleries, portfolios, of exhibitions using original artworks created by artists or peers.

(C) Compile collections of artwork such as physical artwork, electronic images, sketchbooks, or portfolios for the purpose of self evaluations or exhibitions.



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