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 "Though a living cannot be made of art,
Art makes life worth living.
It makes living, living.
It makes starving, living.
It makes worry, it makes trouble, it makes a life that would be barren of everything, living.
It brings life, to life."

~ John Sloan


  Jessica Corolla  
  Mathematical Grid Drawing Lesson Plan
Lesson Overview

A.     February 6th, 2010
B.     Seven 45 minute Lessons
C.     Group Practice followed by Individual Project
D.     Incorporating Georgia O’Keeffe’s style into Mathematical Grid Drawing
E.      Fourth Grade
F.      Miss Jessica Croll

A.     2.3.5.A- Select and use appropriate instruments and units for measuring quantities (e.g., perimeter, volumes, arena, weight, time, temperature).
B.     2.3.5.B- Select and use standard tools to measure the size of figures with specified accuracy, including length, width, perimeter and area.
C.     9.1.5.D- Describe and use knowledge of a specific style within each art form through a performance or exhibition of a unique work.
D.     9.1.5.H- Use and maintain materials, equipment and tools safely at work and performance spaces.

A.     Students will learn how to do a graphic enlargement grid drawing which examines the proportions of a drawing and utilizes the practice of scale drawing. They will also appreciate the styles and techniques signature of Georgia O’Keeffe by imitating her work utilizing methods with oil pastels.

A.     Given that the students have already learned about, discussed, and viewed examples of Georgia O’Keeffe’s work and biography, students will create their own O’Keeffe-like oil pastel drawing, utilizing the mathematical concept of graphic enlargement and scale drawing. Students will present their works at the end, and should be able to explain their mathematical process of graphic enlargement as well as a brief description of their artistic techniques using at least three of the artistic vocabulary words discussed.


  • Pencils

  • Erasers

  • Grid Drawing Practice Worksheets (see attached)

  • Rulers

  • Coloring Book Pages

  • Construction Paper

  • Tape

  • Sketch Paper

  • Large Poster Paper

  • Oil Pastels

  • Blending tools (i.e. paper towels, paper stylus, etc.)

 Medium- The art material that is used in a work of art. Plural is media.

Pastel- A type of media. Colors go from soft to brilliant in a stick form. When the paper is covered completely, it is known as a pastel painting.

Primary Colors- Red, blue, and yellow

Secondary Colors- Orange, violet, and green. Each color is midway between the Primaries from which it can be mixed.

Shade- Using a mixture of black mixed with a color to make it darker. The opposite of shade is tint.

Tint- Tint is the opposite of shade. Tinting is combining white with a color to make it lighter.

Value- Shadows, darkness, contrasts, and light are all values in artwork.


A.     DAY ONE

                                                               i.      MOTIVATION and INTRODUCTION

a)      Students will be lead into a review discussion about Georgia O’Keeffe and her work. Then students will be told that they will be creating their own O’Keeffe-like paintings using oil pastels and mathematical methods during the next week. Teacher will ease nervous student’s fears by showing students her own drawing, and assuring again and again that everyone will be able to make a beautiful painting like this. Teacher will also tell students that the end of the project will be the 7th class, which will be an “Art Exhibit Opening”, complete with refreshments and the artists presenting and explaining their work before they are put on display. Parents will be encouraged to come and help with the “Art Exhibit Opening”.

                                                             ii.      DEVELOPMENT

a)      Students will spend the first day practicing a grid drawing as a class. Worksheets will be handed out, and a grid will be drawn on the board. Teacher and class will go step-by-step, square-by-square, to replicate an image both on the board and on each student’s individual paper. Teacher will be sure to discuss how the drawings are to scale, and lead students into answering how they might choose their own scale, which they will have to do with their O’Keefe-like drawing. As the students gain more confidence throughout the class drawing, teacher will give them more time to work ahead and finish the picture on their own.

                                                            iii.      STRATEGIES FOR DIVERSE LEARNERS

a)      As this is not a very language oriented, and a very class involved AND individually motivated lesson, this does not need much accommodation for students with special needs. Students will be allowed and encouraged to work at their own pace, and once students get to work by themselves, teacher and aids will be available to offer help when it is needed. Teachers and aids, however, should not DO a project for ANY student, as individual interpretation is encouraged.

                                                           iv.      SUMMARY AND CLOSE

a)      Students will walk around the room at the end of the period and look at each other’s interpretations of their pictures. This will prompt the teacher to lead the class in a discussion about how different, unique interpretations are not only ok, but encouraged in art, and that this will be rewarded on the final product. This will hopefully provide nervous students with more confidence about how their final project will turn out.

                                                             v.      ASSIGNMENT

a)      Students will be given second grid drawing worksheet to take home with them, including choosing their own scale to do the drawing in. The more practice the students get with this technique, the more comfortable they will be to use it on their final product.

B.     DAY TWO

                                                               i.      INTRODUCTION

a)      Reminder of the final project, and overview of the previous night’s homework, much in the same manner of the worksheet done the previous day. Students will then be told that they are going to be sketching out their final projects today.

                                                             ii.      DEVELOPMENT

a)      Students will start out by picking out which coloring book image that they wish to use. Before selecting their image, however, teacher will demonstrate how to make the view-finder with the construction paper and the tape, and discuss how the final product will only be a section of the coloring book image, using her original image compared to her final product, which is always on the board as a final goal for the students to look for. After students have selected the image of their choosing and found a view with the viewfinder, the teacher will stop their progress and lead the class into a discussion and review of choosing of scale while handing out the large poster paper. The teacher will state that each student must have their scale figured out and approved before sketching starts. Students will then draw a grid on their picture and a grid on their large poster paper that corresponds to it after it meets approval. Students will then use the rest of the period to finish sketching, and will be reminded to use soft, whisper, sketching lines that can be erased easily.

                                                            iii.      STRATEGIES FOR DIVERSE LEARNERS

a)      Again, this project is very individually paced, so teachers and aids will be available for assistance, but NOT for answers or to do it for students.

                                                           iv.      SUMMARY AND CLOSURE

a)      Instruct students to clean up their areas, that wherever they are is perfectly fine because they will have plenty of time to complete the project, but invite those who want to take the project home to feel free and finish their sketches. Teacher will then lead the class in a brief, informal discussion on if students were surprised and or delighted in their sketches so far, and ask about any concerns or questions students may have.


                                                               i.      INTRODUCTION AND MOTIVATION

a)      Students will be told that today they is an all art day, where they will be free to finish up their sketches and will begin exploring the medium of oil pastels and different ways to use them.

                                                             ii.      DEVELOPMENT

a)      Before students get their sketches back, teacher will hand out lots of sketch papers and oil pastels (in groups) to students. This is so that students can take as much time as they want experimenting with the various blending and application techniques of using oil pastels without the threat of harming their sketches. Teacher will then guide the students through their exploration of the media, first by leading them in a review of the color wheel and how difference colors mix together to make other colors, shades, and tints, and then by encouraging students to try various blending techniques. This lesson will be structured almost as an experiment, as students will discover how oil pastels work and blend, and the teacher only occasionally offering suggestions on what students could try to use next. Teacher will state, while students are experimenting, that final projects will get higher points on the rubric if they use these blending techniques on their artwork, as this representative of Georgia O’Keeffe’s signature style. Students will be told that, when they are ready, they can bring their sketches out and either finish their sketching or start using their oil pastels on their drawing, but reminded that constant experimentation on sketch paper is encouraged and alright.

                                                            iii.      SUMMARY AND CLOSURE

a)      Teacher will instruct students when it’s time to clean up, and offer the opportunity for students to take their drawings home again, granted they go through the proper sign-out procedure for the artistic materials. Teacher will also lead students in another brief and informal discussion about what they learned about how to use oil pastels, and if anyone had any ideas about how they might want to use color in their projects.


                                                               i.      INTRODUCTION AND MOTIVATION

a)      Teacher will tell students that these are open studio days to work on their projects so that they have plenty of in-class time to finish the assignment (and a weekend) before the “Art Exhibit Opening”. On Day Five or Six, possible brief planning for refreshments and helpers for the “Art Exhibit Opening”.

                                                             ii.      DEVELOPMENT

a)      Students are given sufficient class time to work on and perfect these projects, as in both set-up and clean-up, time is inevitably cut short. Student’s own pace will be encouraged, however students that finish their artwork before the conclusion of Day six will be encouraged for first work on what they will be presenting at the “Art Exhibit Opening”, and then be an apprentice/helper to their classmates.

                                                            iii.      STRATEGIES FOR DIVERSE LEARNERS

a)      Students with special needs might need more time to complete this project than allotted, so they will be given first preference over taking materials home to work on them, and/or offered additional times they can come to the classroom and work on them. However, as everyone else, they are still expected to have a completed project by the seventh class.

                                                           iv.      SUMMARY AND CLOSURE

a)      Each day, the teacher will remind students that they should have their projects and presentations completed for the seventh class, and that presentations are to be completed on their own time, since the presentations are informal explanations of their procedures. A rubric of expectations of this project will have been passed out to the students by the third class period, so any questions and concerns will be addressed.

                                                             v.      ASSIGNMENT

a)      Students will be invited to take their works home, and also required to work on their presentations for the “Art Exhibit Opening” at home on their own time.


                                                               i.      INTRODUCTION AND MOTIVATION

a)      This is the final day of the project, the “Art Exhibit Opening” day, with refreshments and helpers/audience members, which will hopefully be motivation enough for the students to be excited about and proud about their work. Teacher will start “Art Exhibit Opening” by acting as an MC, introducing the artists, applauding their beautiful works, and referring back to Georgia O’Keeffe, the mathematical concepts used, and the art media practiced in this project before turning it over for the students to do their presentations.

                                                             ii.      DEVELOPMENT

a)      Students will present their projects one at a time to the class and the audience. When not presenting, students may enjoy their refreshments, and must offer positive remarks and observations about their peer’s work. Everyone’s artwork, interpretation, and effort will be celebrated. Students, in their presentations must describe the mathematical scale they used in their sketches, how they used their grid drawing, the methods they used with the oil pastels to create their blends and textures, using at least three of the vocabulary words, and one observation or comment relating their work to Georgia O’Keeffe’s work.

                                                            iii.      STRATEGIES FOR DIVERSE LEARNERS

a)      ESOL students may have a different rubric when it comes to their presentation, as they might struggle with the language for describing their processes. Consideration must be taken for each student, and grading should be based on their effort.

                                                           iv.      SUMMARY AND CLOSURE

a)      A final discussion of the project and how the students feel about their art overall, and how they think this helped them understand both how to use the oil pastel medium and mathematical grid drawing. Student’s artwork will then be on display around the classroom and in the hallway as an Art Exhibit.



A.     ASSESSMENT                                                           


Poor (D)

O.K (C)

Great (B)

Excellent (A)




Mathematical Explanation

Very little or no explanation of grid drawing and choice of scale, and no sign that any real measurements were used

Gives an explanation of describing the creation of the grid drawing and choice of scale that is somewhat confusing, doesn’t include any measurements

Does a pretty good job of describing general procedure of creating grid drawing and choice of scale, doesn’t include any or many measurements


Clearly explains the general procedure of creating grid drawing and choice of scale, using measurements




Artistic Explanation

Very little or no explanation of procedures of how oil pastels were used, and no evidence of any technique used in the piece

Gives a confusing or incoherent explanation of procedures of how oil pastels were used, with no reference to the techniques used in the piece

Does a pretty good job explaining procedures of how oil pastels were used, and a few general examples of techniques used in work

Clearly explains the general procedure of how oil pastels were used and specific examples of techniques pointed out in work



Vocabulary Usage

Uses none of the artistic vocabulary discussed and doesn’t offer any explanation or understanding of vocabulary

Uses less than three of the artistic vocabulary discussed, and/or doesn’t explain vocabulary


Uses and explains three of the artistic vocabulary discussed


Uses and explains more than three of the artistic vocabulary discussed

Georgia O’Keeffe Connection

Does not relate own work to Georgia O’Keeffe, does not demonstrate any knowledge of Georgia O’Keeffe’s style

Barely relates own work to Georgia O’Keeffe, does not demonstrate any knowledge of Georgia O’Keeffe’s style

Relates own work to the style of Georgia O’Keeffe in a generalized way without pointing to specific similarities and/or differences

Thoughtfully relates own work to the style of Georgia O’Keeffe, pointing out specific similarities and/or differences


Art Exhibit Opening Presentations

Students who do not produce anything to present during the Art Exhibit Opening will receive a Failing Grade (F)


                                                               i.      Teacher will look at final products and presentations, and see what the students understood and conveyed best in their presentations, and what should merit more focus and have some more time devoted to it. Teacher will also note student’s enthusiasm and self-esteem and sense of accomplishment and pride during the activity, as this lesson is supposed to boost, not crush, these things.

Updated March 2007