Thursday, November 15, 2012

Starry Night

A Visual Art and Writing Lesson for Grades 3-6

The children will discuss/explore elements of art (shape, form, color, space) in van Vincent van Gogh's Starry Night and create original stories using this painting as a writing prompt.

Starry Night (readily available on internet), writing and drawing materials

Visual Art (perceive and analyze)
Writing (compose imaginative narratives)

  • Show the students a copy of the painting
  • Invite students to answer questions about the image: What basic shapes are used (circles, triangles, squares, etc.)? What colors are used (primary, secondary)? How would you describe the textures (rough, smooth)? How is the space organized and divided? What items are repeated? What items stand out or blend in?
  • Ask the students to make a rough sketch of the painting showing the general shapes, textures, and use of space (optional).
  • Prepare to use the painting as a writing prompt: Discuss how the painting makes the students feel. Invite students to share experiences that come to mind relative to this painting. Ask the students to imagine that this painting represents what they are really seeing; they are actually there seeing this particular landscape. How do they feel? Why are they there? How did they get there? What are they going to do? What happens next? Who are they with? 
  • Write stories based on the foregoing discussions.
  • Tell or read the original stories to each other (pairs, small groups, entire class--depending on time)

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