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At Blick, we love those "light bulb" moments when an idea inspires and the creative juices start to flow.

Geared for a wide variety of age and skill levels, we offer hundreds of Lesson Plans designed to meet the National Standards for Visual Art Education and bring the value of creativity to any teaching experience.

All original. All free. Help yourself!

Click here to download our 2015 Lesson Plans Booklet

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Byzantine Medallions
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Grade Level

Miniature Treasure Keeper

Joseph Cornell's (1903-1972) most characteristic art works were boxed assemblages created from found objects. These were simple boxes in which he arranged surprising collections of photgraphs or bric-a-brac in a way that combines the formality of Constructivism with the lively fantasy of Surrealism. Students will gather pieces of nostalgia or found objects to embed in plaster within an arrangement of mini canvas "boxes".

K – 12

Paper Memory Quilt

The stitching together of layers of padding and fabric may date as far back as ancient Egypt. In America, quilt-making was common beginning in the late 18th century. A paper memory quilt is a fun way to keep ephemera (paper items) that have significance. This project will teach important design skills as pieces of paper are cut apart and reassembled. Insight into pattern, rhythm and repetition is gained.

2 – 12

Rolly Bowls

Glazing isn't the only way to create beautiful surfaces! Agateware pottery features swirling marbelized colors and was probably first developed to imitate the qualities of agate, a semiprecious stone with striated patterning. These swirling effects can be created by working with thin slabs of colored clay that has been layered to create patterns. This technique allows for both precise patterns and free, random effects.

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3 – 12

Scrimshaw-Style Yupo Engraving

As early as 1750, New England whalers passed the time by engraving nautical artwork on bones, tusks, etc. As a means of experiencing this traditional American craft, students can etch into Yupo using scratch tools, then fill the lines with oil pastel.

Watch the Video

5 – 12

Sole Pendants

In this project, students explore the beauty of texture found in a surprising place... on the soles of their shoes! Texture is all around us, and oftentimes exists right under our noses.

Watch the Video

K – 3

String Painting

Inspired by Huichol Nierikas — beautiful paintings made from yarn pressed onto beeswax — this is a simple way for students to experience the color, geometric linework and symbolism of this Native American art form. Using colorful string applied to an adhesive-backed piece of felt, students create their designs without messy glue or sharp cutting tools.

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3 – 12

Tibetan Wishing Banner

Tibetan wish or prayer flags traditionally are used to promote peace, compassion, strength and wisdom. Tibetans do not believe that the flags carry prayers to the gods, but rather that their messages and wishes will be blown by the wind to spread goodwill and compassion into all-pervading space. In this project, students will use a liquid wax resist that will be painted onto silk rectangles and need not be removed. Vibrant color and a final gold embellishment finish the piece.

2 – 12

Venetian Volto Mask

The Italian word “volto” translates as “face”. These full-face masks were known as “citizen’s masks” because they were originally worn by common people during the Carnival of Venice. By draping acrylic felt over a reusable form and using Rice Paste (a gluten-free maché alternative) to stiffen, students create a sculptural mask that can be decorated with paint, glitter, feathers, rhinestones, etc.

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3 – 12

WonderFoam Collagraph Prints

WonderFoam is familiar to almost everyone who has ever presented a craft project to children — but, if you'd like to move beyond the "foamies" to a real art technique, incorporate WonderFoam into printmaking! “Collagraph” is a process in which materials are arranged collage-style on a rigid surface, coated with tempera paint and then transferred to paper. Students learn to make repeating patterns with shapes.

K – 6
Special Education

Byzantine Medallions

The wealthy Byzantine Empire had a huge influence on personal ornamentation. Characterized by extensive iconography, pendants and medallions were widely produced to denote faith, office or rank. For this project, students use air-dry clay and colorful rhinestones to create their own Byzantine-style medallions. Gilded with gold powder and finished with a gloss coating, they can be used as ornaments or placed outdoors as mini stepping stones.

K – 12

Impressionistic Marker Painting

You won't believe what these markers can do! The juicy, alcohol-based ink reacts with itself or with hand-sanitizer to make painterly drawings on clear plastic film.

Watch the Video

3 – 12

Acrylic “Skins”

This project utilizes acrylic paint, but in a totally unique way...dried! Acrylic paint "skins" are easily created just by brushing paint on a non-stick palette or baker's parchment and letting it dry. You can use this plastic, flexible paint in a number of ways to create mosaics, mixed media collage, stained glass-like effects, jewelry, book covers and more!

Watch the Video

K – 12

Mr. Blacks’s Dog House

This beginning project introduces early elementary students to basic clay construction skills. Employing both fine and gross motor skills, students assign a unique personality to their pet, then bisque fire and add the definition of spots and color with glazes.

K – 3

Embossed Metal Encaustics

Considered a lost art for many centuries, encaustic painting is enjoying a resurgence because of modern techniques, tools and materials. While encaustic painting requires moving molten wax from a heating element to a surface, the technique used in this lesson plan creates textured “reservoirs” in metal foil that channel and cradle sprinkled wax chips as they melt. Interesting dimensions and contrasts between the metal and translucent wax occur when cooled.

Watch the Video

5 – 12

Monotype Hoop-La

Functioning as both a painting and a print, a Monotype is unique and irreproducible. The “hoop-la” over Monotype can be experienced in your classroom with this simplified, safely water-based process using acrylic paint, printing foam and fabric. The technique builds the print a layer at a time and tools are used to remove or “subtract” color between layers. Stretch the finished print ona gold macramé ring for an instant frame.

Watch the Video

3 – 12

Picasso-Inspired Soft Sculpture

By looking through the vast array of figurative paintings done by Picasso during his cubist phase, students may find many possibilities for soft sculpture adaptations. Fine art, sculpture and textiles combine to make this eye-catching piece!

Watch the Video

K – 12

“Art-O-Motion” Mechanical Sculpture

In 1913, Marcel DuChamp mounted a spinning bicycle wheel to a stool to make what is considered the first kinetic sculpture. Since then, many artists have paired physical science and engineering with artistic vision to create amazing pieces of mechanical sculpture. This simple, pulley-operated design has students design “gears” that spin on spools when a string is pulled.

Watch the Video

5 – 12

Fantastic Faux Fossils

Students create their own “fossil bed” by modeling three-dimensional shapes of animals, plants or insects, then “burying” them beneath layers of tissue paper. Add earth-tone pastels to make them look as if they just came from an excavation site.

Watch the Video

K – 12

Fauvism is for the Birds!

Les Fauves (translation: “The Wild Beasts”) were a group of artists whose work was characterized by seemingly wild brush work and strident colors. The colors the Fauves used are also favored by wild birds. Hummingbirds like red, orange and pink. Songbirds prefer colors that mimic trees and bushes. To see which species of birds are attracted to these “beastly” colors, students create a painted, hanging birdfeeder from a stretched canvas or “upcycled” wooden frame.

K – 12
Special Education

Illuminated Initials

The practice of illumination — decoration of pages with ornate lettering, luminous color and precious metals, was developed during the middle ages when literacy was rare and books were even more so. With this process, students design one of their own initials on reflective board and add transparent color — it appears to glow with reflective light from within.

3 – 8

Percussive Pods

Rattles are the only musical instrument found throughout the world. While their physical forms vary, their uses are very consistent. Many cultures give infants rattles as a toy. In rituals and ceremonies, rattles are used prominently and often believed to possess supernatural powers. Students explore texture and clay construction as they form a rattle inspired by natural shapes: seed pods, shells, gourds, rain-sticks, etc.

Watch the Video

K – 12
Special Education

Pop Art Portraits: in the style of Andy Warhol

Andy Warhol, a key figure in the Pop Art movement, “mass-produced” silk-screened portraits of celebrities such as Marilyn Monroe and Elvis Presley. Transferring an image of themselves onto clay and duplicating it several times, students can experiment with color combinations in portraits, just as Warhol did.

Watch the Video

5 – 12

Upcycled Leather and “Turquoise” Cuffs

Worn as protection in battle, support for heavy labor and to identify status, leather cuffs have shielded wrists throughout mankind’s history. To the Pueblo and Navajo, turquoise is considered sacred and powerful, the perfect adornment. This project invites students to design a cuff from an old leather belt. Embellish with “turquoise” beads fashioned from polymer clay or with stamping, lacing and marker designs.

3 – 12

Egg-stra Easy Watercolor “Crunch”

Traditionally, eggshell mosaics are made by first dying then positioning each shard individually — a time-consuming and delicate process. This project introduces a new way to crush and color eggshells, creating intricate veining and texture all at once without pre-dying or arranging each fragment. The simple glue-and-paint process and satisfying “crunch!” of breaking eggshells will delight children of all ages and skill levels.

Watch the Video

K – 12
Special Education

Thematic Clay Picture Frames

A lesson plan from AMACO®. Students select their favorite photo and design a custom picture frame to display it. After the bisque firing, the picture frames will be painted and decorated using the new AMACO® Teacher's Choice and Teacher's Palette low-fire glazes.

K – 6

Navajo-Inspired Bottles - 2 Projects by Mayco® Colors

Navajo pottery tended towards functional ware and minimalist design and decoration. Pinch, slab and coil construction methods were used to make bowls and bottles, for carrying water and food consumption. In these projects students will use their knowledge of Navajo symbols to create Navajo inspired designs on a clay bottles.

4 – 8

Peace Windows: in the style of Marc Chagall’s stained glass

Late in his career, artist Marc Chagall produced a number of paintings in glass with colorful, dream-like images symbolizing peace, love, tolerance and faith. In reality, Marc Chagall’s life was filled with tragic events and the world he lived in was anything but peaceful. In light of this fact, students can begin to understand an artist’s ability to share healing, inspiration and encouragement, using “peace” as a theme.

Watch the Video

K – 8
Special Education

Polynesian “Medicine” Sticks

Polynesia is a large area in the central and southern Pacific Ocean containing more than 1,000 scattered islands. Many of these islands share cultural similarities among the various groups of people who live on them, especially in terms of their mythologies. Stories often include gods or deities that rule nature. In addition to the oral tradition, "god sticks" are made to represent these deities, usually in the form of a human face or figure wrapped in bark cloth or cord.

3 – 8

“Print & Go” T-Shirts

Printing creative T-shirts and fabrics doesn’t always require stencils and screens — students can easily design their own giant stamps and paint them any way they want. Even if each shirt displays the same message, each will be a completely unique work of art! This process is perfect for group settings — schools, camps, daycare centers, clubs, family reunions and special events — but it is also ideal for countless home decorating and craft projects.

K – 8
Special Education

Stencil a Painting

Stencils and repeated patterns have been used in painting as long ago as 9,000 years, when early humans placed their hands against cave walls and outlined them in charcoal or paint. In this lesson, even a stencil made of basic shapes can be effective. Each stencil can be used repeatedly, and by changing oil pastel color, overlapping images, or using only a part of an image, the result is a cohesive composition that has depth and color fusion.

4 – 12

Watercolor Texture Casts

Molding, casting, sculpting, painting and monoprinting — this simple project pulls all of these together into one low-relief sculpture that demonstrates the elements of texture and color. Texture is defined in clay by pressing objects in or sculpting with tools. Next, the clay is painted with watercolor and covered with papier mâché, which lifts the color as it dries, absorbing it directly into the casting.

Watch the Video

3 – 12

Color Scramble

In the 1960’s, Frank Stella became known for his minimal geometric paintings of concentric squares that used color to create visual movement. Each concentric square of color related to the next, whether they were harmonic or contrasting colors. In this lesson plan, students consider color relations and “paint” a Stella-style work with colored masking tape,

4 – 12

Cubist Portrait Bust

The first thing children learn when learning to draw a face or a figure is to view each part as a basic shape. This project approaches sculpture in the same way. Using geometric Styrofoam shapes, students build a bust or torso. The finished result resembles a simplified version of something you might have seen from Picasso or one of the other Cubist painters, only in three dimensions. This project is a good introduction to sculpture for young students.

K – 6

Graffiti Fun Art

Encourage students to design a personal and stylized signature or “tag.” The tag can be a given name, a nickname or something they’ve made up to represent themselves. This school version of graffiti shows students that lettering is not only important in communicating, but that it can also be an artistic expression.

1 – 6

Itajime Decorative Paper

Itajime Shibori is a technique for folding, clamping and dyeing paper or fabric resulting in beautiful designs – very similar to tie-dye. The folds and clamps keep the dye or ink from penetrating fully in certain areas making patterns and giving a dimensional appearance on a flat surface. This project is a great way to teach students the scientific concept of diffusion and color mixing.

3 – 12

Master Palettes

Drawing on the reverse side of a matte sheet of acetate, students create “windows” into the work of a chosen artist, using similar colors, subject matter and style to describe the artist’s focus. See if the class can guess which artists are represented on each student’s “palette.”

K – 6

On the Wall Motifs

Students select a commercial business and consider images, symbols and colors that will best represent the company. The repeated “wallpaper” patterns are made with a stamp designed and carved by the students. This fun project will help children understand how simple images communicate a message, whether in business or elsewhere.

4 – 6

Pot Holder Quilt

A great collaborative art project. Each student weaves a colorful pot holder then stitches it with the class pieces for a quilt or wall hanging. The project is bright, colorful and fun. It is also a great exercise in dexterity and cooperation.

2 – 6

Pyramid Book

Unlock the secrets of an ancient Egyptian pyramid with this easy-to-construct box that opens to reveal “treasure” inside. When closed, the outside walls are held in place with a clay disk. Remove the disk and open the pyramid to reveal what's inside. Younger students can make artifacts from clay to place inside. Older students may be challenged to learn the inner parts of the pyramids and add paper pages to write about and illustrate their discoveries.

3 – 8

Stilt Houses

A stilt house is constructed on posts above water, allowing people to live in areas that have very little dry land. Found in many coastal and wetland regions of the world, stilt houses can be ultra modern or very basic. In this lesson, students build a stilt house while being mindful of the area where the house might exist and the lifestyle of its inhabitants.

3 – 7

Tubular Bowls

A few simple geometry skills and a little time spent making paper rolls is all that goes into this eye-catching art paper bowl. It's a great way to recycle materials or use up scrap paper, and your students will learn about repeating patterns and design rhythm as they place each tube of paper on a piece of self-adhesive film.

3 – 12

Chenille Stem Stitchery

Spanish painter Joan Miró is known for his playful art. Although he was a world renowned artist, his work gives the impression it could have been created by a child. Miró was interested in reducing characters to their simplest forms and using very basic, bright colors. He felt some of the best ideas were inspired by the simplest things. In this project, students attach and weave Chenille Stems onto stitchery canvas to make simple shapes and designs.

K – 6
Special Education

Festival Flowers

The easiest way to make colorful, three-dimensional paper flowers! Even young children will enjoy painting carnation-like blooms and creating full bouquets for Mother’s Day gifts, May Day celebrations, a Cinco de Mayo fiesta or a Hawaiian Luau. Each flower costs just pennies to make. Because the watercolors blend together and form new hues, painting each bloom is a good way to illustrate color mixing.

K – 8

Deconstructed Books

There's more to "deconstructing" a book than just altering the pages. In this project, deconstructing means changing the object from a book to a sculpture. The tools are very basic — scissors, glue, paper punches and a desire to experiment!

3 – 12
Special Education

Drapo Dazzle

Inspired by the sequinned banners of Haiti, students will make a banner of their own design using a variety of glittery, sparkly, shiny materials and brilliant colors. Use this opportunity to learn about the art and history of Haiti, a unique blend of African, French, Spanish and Native Caribbean cultures.

K – 8

Fiber Fusion Vessels

This project should be considered “Part Two” of our Fiber Fusion lesson plan. This project helps students stretch their imaginations and further develop a |two-dimensional artwork they’ve created by turning it into a three-dimensional sculptural piece.

7 – 12

Making Elemental Drawing Materials

Blick Art Materials was not around to provide art supplies 32,000 years ago, but, somehow, the earliest humans found a way to draw and paint on cave walls using materials made from basic elements all around them. Similar to the Paleolithic era, students will make their own drawing tools by transforming simple materials from the classroom, and then using them to communicate through images.

K – 12

Mini Furniture Fabrications

Students often take furniture for granted, yet how much do they really know about the furniture where they eat, sleep and study? Have they ever looked at these objects and considered them art? Or considered that an artist may have had a hand in creating them? This awareness exercise will help students learn to “see" the things surrounding them.

7 – 12

Mise-en-Scéne

"Mise-en-Scéne" is a French expression referring to the physical setting of a stage performance. The background scenery is designed to help tell a story in a play or on film by creating an environment and setting the mood. Students select a chapter from a book, an act from a play, a song or a poem, and then create a 3-dimensional setting for it.

N/A

No-Fire Nouveau Tiles

Beginning in the early 1880s, the “Art Nouveau” style flourished in all forms of art. Beautiful pottery was mass-produced during this era, especially in the form of decorative tiles. Tube lining — a technique in which a design outline was created first and then filled in with color — is the definitive look of Art Nouveau. If kiln-glazed ceramics are not an option for your environment, this project is a way to produce glossy, hand-painted tiles that look like the real thing.

Watch the Video

K – 8
10 – 12
Special Education

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