Monday, 18 April 2011

Australian Bird Paintings

By Lisa, 2009

The Lesson:

In 2009 the Year 3/4 students were studying a unit of work on Australian birds.  We were learning about their body parts and features, their habitats, how they fly, their adaptations and how to listen for different bird species.  I designed this lesson to compliment these lessons and to help set the right "mood" for the classroom!  The lesson idea came from A Deep Space Sparkle art lesson on painting parrots:

Lesson Steps:

1.  Show the students photos of different Australian birds.  Also look at diagrams of birds and discuss the body parts and features of the birds.
2.  I started by doing a demonstration drawing, discussing the layout, sizing and spacing.  I then gave the students a sheet of white art paper, showed them how to start by drawing in a branch and leaves and then encouraged them to draw their own in. When I am teaching step-by-step drawing like this, I always provide hints about spacing, such as "Start your branch 3 finger spaces up from the bottom left corner of the page" etc.
3.  I then sent the students back to their desks to draw in their birds.  To help students draw the birds, I provided each table group with a variety of clipart images and drawings of Australian birds that they could copy/use to inspire them. 
4.  For the really reluctant/unconfident students, I allowed them to trace 1 or 2 of the bird features and then they were encouraged to draw the rest in themselves.  I found this gave these students a bit of support and scaffolding, which allowed them to create a successful independent drawing (without just tracing the whole thing!)
5.  After the drawings were completed, we met back together on the floor to discuss colours.  We looked at the different colours of Australian birds and I demonstrated how to mix colours together to create more realistic, richer tones.  I also explained how to wash brushes in between different colour selections, so as not to end up with dirty paint colours!
6.  The students went back and painted their birds.
7.  When dry, I asked the students to outline their birds with black texta and add in any extra details they had not already put in (either deliberately or forgotten!), e.g. claws on branches, eye details, feathers etc.  Many students forgot to draw in the claws on branches.  Next time I teach this lesson, I will make a point of reminding them!

Year 3 Bird Paintings:

Year 3 Australian Bird paintings, 2009

By Braedy, 2009
By Riley, 2009

By Minhyeong, 2009


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