Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Welcome Spring

We are so ready for Spring. While the Sunflower isn't a spring flower in North Texas, the color is really warming us up. I changed my 2nd grade mixed media sunflower lesson from years past after seeing
 Patty's lesson on Deep Space Sparkle. I used some of her ideas with regards to the painting and stems.
 I start my lesson with my favorite book, Camille and the Sunflowers

The student's make a symmetrical vase the first day on folded 6"x 6" paper using a wax transfer method 
with china markers.  We painted them with Prang watercolor trays also on the first day.

Then cut and glue the vase to the 12" x 18" paper, or if you have had ice days like we did, I cut and glued them so we could make up some time. 

This is where I got my idea for Patty's blog. I used the Dick Blick concentrated watercolors and 80 lb sulfur paper to paint the table and the wall. The color was amazing. 
In the past  they used the Prang trays of watercolor for this part. 

Instead of using cut paper for the flowers the student's observed my lovely faux sunflowers and drew their own with china marker, no pencil, and colored with oil pastels. In the past I had my student's draw the flower with the stem and glue them on. It was a cutting challenge. 

Today we cut and glued the finished flowers to the background! It was so exciting to work on those cutting and gluing skills as well as showing space by overlapping the flowers. 

These flowers were growing down the street from me this past summer! 

My favorites just as they were for Van Gogh!


  1. These are bright and beautiful! Thanks for posting!!!

  2. The colors really popped. I plan on using these paints again. Thanks.

  3. These are really great! I bought Van Gogh's Cat at our book fair last year, what a great book made by kids!

  4. This is stunning lesson! I love the combination of watercolor, oil pastel, and cut paper. Just to clarify the steps, it looks like you had them draw the stems above the vase with green oil pastel before painting the wall background. Is that correct? What directions did you give them to draw the stems? Had they already drawn their flowers so they could coordinate their placement?

    1. I posted a reply below. Sorry for the delay.

  5. Yes they drew the stems and painted with water colors. I asked them to draw a minimum of three.. They drew and cut the flowers the next day.

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  7. OK, two more questions - First, what size paper did they draw the sunflowers on? It looks like each sunflower was drawn on a separate square piece of sulphite paper. The pieces look to be about 3x3 or 4x4 inches. Is that about right? Secondly, what is a wax transfer method, and how does it work? Thank you very much!

    1. The sunflowers were were drawn on a 4 x 6 paper. The vase was made on a square sheet of paper folded in half. Draw half of the vase on the fold. Trace with china marker then refold with the black drawing in side the folded paper. Rub over it with the scissor handles to transfer the drawing to the other side of the paper. You then draw over the transfer to make it look like the other side.

  8. Did you instruct students to draw flowers that were not straight on? I noticed they have one straight on, and a couple where you see different views? Just wondering how you explained, demonstrated this?


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