Using Famous Artists to Create a Beautiful Mother's Day Painting

We do a fun activity a few times a year called "Special K." I am not really sure where this name came from, but we have been using it for many years! During our Special K days, our 3 kindergartens get together for a few hours on Friday and do fun projects or activities that we cannot fit into our regular daily curriculum. One of our favorites is "Famous Artists." Each of us takes an artist and the kids create a project that mimics in some way his/her style. Because we do this in the spring, we base our projects on flowers. Also, these projects make awesome Mothers' Day presents! They do not take much time, can be accomplished on a limited budget, and are super pretty when completed! I am not going to claim that these are my original ideas, but we have been doing them for so long, they seem like ours!

One of our famous artists is Vincent Van Gogh. We discuss his still life flowers in a vase. We look at his paintings and notice that many of his flower vases are painted on a table, but we usually cannot see the whole table. We look at the droop of the flowers and the different sizes of leaves. I actually place vases of flowers at the tables for the kids to look at, but tell them that they can draw flowers however they wish!

First they draw a table line and then they draw their vase. They must use their pencil  to sketch first. After they have completed their pencil drawing, they use black marker to trace over their pencil lines. Then they use colored chalk to color their pictures. I show them how to use their "finger tool" to smear the chalk. When the drawing is complete, we staple the corners onto black construction paper and spray with hairspray to set the chalk.



Our second famous artist is Claude Monet. Of course, we base this project upon his water lilies! The children use watercolors to create a watery background. Then they use watercolors to paint a water lily. The water lily is a coffee filter cut to resemble the petals of a flower. The flower is glued upon the water.




Our third project is based on Pablo Picasso's "Hand With Flowers." The children trace their hands onto skin colored construction paper and glue onto white paper. Then they make stems from green construction paper. They sponge paint their flowers above the stems.




One of my student's parents told me today that when her 3rd grade daughter was in kindergarten, she took these paintings and framed them! That is pretty cool!