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Main Curriculum Tie:
Background For Teachers:
Paul Klee was born in Switzerland in 1879. He liked writing poetry and music as much as painting. He decided to focus on painting and studied in Munich, Germany. He observed the world around him to inspire his paintings. With his pencil and brush, and even his camera, Klee studied the varied shapes, lines, and colors of things around him, including plants, animals, and people. In his pictures, he wanted to express more than we see with our eyes. Therefore, looking at his pictures we can see forms of actual things often surrounded by more abstract colors, lines, and objects that may represent emotions, movement, and even sound. He felt close to nature and carefully studied the natural things around him. He encouraged his own students to look beyond what the eye or camera sees to find new and exciting worlds. He loved colors and most of his paintings are filled with beautiful colors.
The artist Wassily Kandinsky is another artist you may want to study. He also does a lot of paintings using geometric shapes.
This lesson uses the environment as a source of shape identification.
It is beneficial for students to have previous exposure to the four basic
shapes (square, circle, rectangle, and triangle) and their names. Students
will practice finding shapes, therefore it is beneficial to have clear
blackline examples of each of the shapes to refer to.
Intended Learning Outcomes:
Invitation to Learn
As students share their artwork with the class, notice and record which students are able to readily identify the four basic shapes in their picture. Ask students to explain to the class how they chose the name of their picture and how they used shapes to create a portion of their picture. Check student’s spatial relation knowledge by asking him/her to describe his/her picture using terms listed in the math Core Curriculum (e.g., on, over, under, above, below, top, up, down, in front of, behind, next to, beside, etc.).
You may also want to complete the Folded Shape Books listed above
as a part of the assessment. Watch carefully as the students create their
books to make sure they are properly identifying the specific shape
focused on in the book. You may want to have the students share with
the class to reinforce the names of the shapes, as well as show a variety
of places shapes can be found in the environment. A class tally of the
different types of items (doors, wheels, windows, etc.) could be kept in
order to point out diversity of the items. Encourage students to find
unusual items, but remind them to make sure the shape identified is
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