This activity is aimed for 5th grade students to integrate an art activity with a descriptive writing lesson. Students will write a descriptive paragraph about a family member that they admire, and then a classmate will use this paragraph to draw the person.
Step 1: Materials Needed
The first day of the activity, the students will complete the writing portion of the lesson. They will begin by writing a descriptive paragraph about a family member that they admire. They should include a description of what the family member looks like, along with what they like to do. They need to be very explicit with these descriptions.
After students have completed their paragraphs and edited them, they will switch papers with a partner in the class. They will then draw the person based on the description from their classmates paragraph. They will be provided with paper, colored pencils, crayons, and markers.
The end product should be a picture of the family member that includes all of the details that is in the paragraph. The paragraph will be based on the amount of details that is included while also being graded on grammar and conventions. The drawing will be graded on whether or not it includes all of the details that are in the paragraph.
Step 9: Tips and Tricks
In order to help eliminate some frustration and confusion, teacher should give a short lesson on the techniques needed to draw an realistic face.
A few quick tips include:
-Students should draw a circle and then draw a line across the center like an equator and then from top to bottom.
-The brow line should be in the middle of face.
-The hair line should be a little bit down from the top of the circle.
-The bridge of the nose should be halfway between the "equator" line and the bottom of the circle.
Make sure to explain to the students the importance of the descriptive paragraph. If there is not adequate description, the drawing will not be realistic.
Step 10: Lesson Plan
Format & Content for Integrated Lesson Plans
EL.1.5 2006 - WRITING: Applications
At Grade 1, students begin to write compositions that describe and explain familiar objects, events, and experiences. Students use their understanding of the sounds of words to write simple rhymes. Student writing demonstrates a command of Standard English and the drafting, research, and organizational strategies outlined in Standard 4 - Writing Processes and Features. Writing demonstrates an awareness of the audience (intended reader) and purpose for writing.
VA.1.5 2008 - CREATING ART: Studio Production: Develop a range of subject matter, symbols, and ideas for artwork and utilize skills of critique, reflection, and revision
Students create artwork based on family and personal experiences, demonstrating perceptual skills and using symbols to express ideas. They demonstrate thoughtfulness, care, and respect in their art, sharing work with others.
• Students will learn to write using both complex and simple sentences.
• Students will learn to write using detail.
• Students will learn to write complete paragraphs.
• Students will learn to use symbols to demonstrate experiences.
• Students will learn to use many different materials to express an idea.
Description of the Core Content Lesson
The Core Content lesson that I chose for my lesson will teach students to describe their thoughts and transfer them into their writing. Students will pick two family members that they look up to and will write a paragraph about each. They will need to describe what the family member looks like, why they look up to this family member, and hobbies or interests that the family member has. Students must use details and descriptions in this paragraph. I will introduce this lesson by reading my paragraphs that I wrote about my most influential family members. Students will be able to use paper, pencils, pens, dictionaries, and what ever else will help them.
Description of the Visual Activity
The Hands-on Visual Activity that corresponds to the above lesson will have the students exchange their paragraphs with a partner and then they will have to draw a picture of each of the family members from the paragraphs that they receive. They will need to include at least two symbols that show what the family member enjoys to do. Materials that they will be able to use are crayons, colored pencils, thick markers, skinny markers, paint, white paper, and colored paper. Students will begin by reading the paragraphs that they received. They will then draw the family member (either their whole body or just their face) by using the descriptive paragraph and then they will draw all of the other symbols that describe the family member and their favorite hobbies. The teacher will give a short lesson explaining how to draw features on a face accurately. This activity will take place over two days. The students will write the paragraph on one day and the next day they will do the drawing activity.
These two standards connect almost perfectly for the grade level. The students will use their paragraphs in order to make their portraits. They will need to include enough detail and description so that their partner is able to easily draw what the family member looks like while also including what the family member likes to do. It forces students to work harder at including greater detail to their writing, which will benefit them for the remainder of their schooling career. This assignment will also teach students to use many different materials in order to create artwork based on their classmates’ family. They are also forced to create symbols for the hobbies and experiences that are included in the paragraph that they receive. Combining these two contents will provide students an enjoyable yet educational activity that will be very beneficial for them.
To assess this lesson, I will have the students write their name on all of their work. They will turn in the picture that they drew connected to the paragraph that they used to draw it.
o Does the paragraph include detail and descriptive words?
o Does the paragraph make sense?
o Does the paragraph use both simple and complex sentences?
• Paragraph Conventions
o Does the paragraph have the correct punctuation?
o Does the paragraph have the correct capitalization?
o Is the paragraph indented?
o Does the drawing portray what the paragraphs describe?
o Are at least two symbols included?
o Does the students follow instructions (two paragraphs, two drawings)