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Lesson Collection

ARTSEDGE Lessons for Elementary School

Arts-integrated lessons for students in kindergarten through 5th grade

Teacher with older art class

Lesson Collection

ARTSEDGE Lessons for Middle School

Arts-integrated lessons for students in grades 6th through 8th

Students in a Circle

Lesson Collection

ARTSEDGE Lessons for High School

Arts-integrated lessons for students in grades 9th through 12th

Bessie Smith

Grades 3-4 Lesson

Musical Harlem

Students will learn to identify musical styles and musicians associated with Harlem, focusing on jazz

The Drinking Gourd Constellation

Grades 3-4 Lesson

Harriet Tubman: Secret Messages Shared through Song

Learn how African-American spirituals shared information within the slave community

freedom-riders

Grades 6-8 Lesson

We Are The Freedom Riders

Learn about the courageous efforts of the Freedom Riders during the civil rights movement

Chinese performers

Grades 3-4 Lesson

Chinese Instruments

Explore traditional western and Chinese instruments and create a Chinese instrument

Wagon and mules

Grades 6-8 Lesson

Capturing History

Examine the political and economic reasons for the African-American migration to Northern cities between the World Wars

Weaving Rug

Grades K-2 Lesson

Navajo Weaving

Through guided reading of Ten Little Rabbits and hands-on activities students will explore aspects of Native American cultures and Navajo weavings

President Obama being sworn in.

Grade 5 Lesson

Who Can Vote for President?

Learn general facts about the voting process and its importance in a democratic form of government

Storyteller Figure by Michelle Paisano, Laguna Pueblo

Grades 3-4 Lesson

A Listening Doll

Create a listening doll in the tradition of the Native American storyteller dolls

moccasins

Grades 6-8 Lesson

Moccasins Are Made for Dancing

Students will read one of Tomie DePaola’s versions of two Native American legends

moon and raven

Grade 5 Lesson

Haunting Music

Learn about orchestral “program music” inspired by the spooky and bizarre

Baseball Field

Grades 3-4 Lesson

All Around the Baseball Field

Students construct a mock baseball field and explore the sport of baseball through art, movement, and sound

Spanish dancer.

Grades 9-12 Lesson

Baila! Latin Dance in the Spanish Classroom

Learn about a variety of Latin dances through oral group presentations

Chemical Reactions

Grades 9-12 Lesson

Oxidation and Combustion: Chemical Reactions in Fire

A wide variety of science concepts can be explored through the study of fireworks

Butterfly

Grades K-2 Lesson

The Dance of the Butterfly

Create an original dance that communicates the stages of the life cycle of the monarch butterfly

The American Flag

Grades 3-4 Lesson

Oh, Say Can You See…

Students will learn about the history behind the writing of “The Star-Spangled Banner”

adjectiveMonster

Grades K-2 Lesson

Adjective Monster

Use the visual art and language arts to creatively tell stories of monstrous proportions

Paul Bunyon

Grade 5 Lesson

Tall Tales Today

Create an original tall tale featuring a "larger-than life" main character

Watching the Sunset

Grades 9-12 Lesson

Haiku: Learning and Sharing

Students will look beyond the basics of haiku poetry and focus on the content of the haiku

Irish Dancers

Grades 3-4 Lesson

You’re Invited to a Ceili: Exploring Irish Dance

Explore the traditions of Irish dance through music, costumes, and poetry

trees

Grade 5 Lesson

Trees in Nature and Art

Students will explore the use of trees in paintings and poetry

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LESSON FINDER

Find free arts-based lesson plans and projects for classrooms and afterschool

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1-71 of 71 Results:
Title &
Descriptionsort
Grade Band Arts Subject Other Subject
Sculpture

Grade 5 Lesson: Alexander Calder: Master of Balance
Viewing mobiles created by sculptor Alexander Calder, students learn about the function and form of levers. They build mobiles, experiment with balancing levers, and equilibrium

5-8 Visual Arts Math, Science
Still Life in Winter

Grade 5 Lesson: An American Scene Painter
Students learn about American artist Charles Burchfield. Students capture information and sketches in a journal, then use these ideas to create an original watercolor

5-8 Visual Arts Language Arts
photo gallery

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Analyzing Photographs: From Theory to Practice
Throughout this lesson, students will examine works of art and learn tools to analyze and discuss photography

5-8 Visual Arts, Media Arts Language Arts
Art Gallery

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Art Show with the Masters
Research information on artists' lives and works and prepare works of art based on their understanding of the artists, their time and place in history, and their works.

5-8 Theater, Visual Arts Language Arts, Social Studies
Wagon and mules

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Capturing History
Through teacher-guided discussions and hands-on activities, students will understand the political and economic reasons for the African-American migration to Northern cities between the World Wars.

5-8 Media Arts, Visual Arts Social Studies
Bodiam Castle

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Castles & Cornerstones
This lesson will explore the historic importance and function of castles in King Arthur's time and introduce students to a general history of castles and architectural terms

5-8 Visual Arts Math, History
Shadow Box

Grades 6-8 Lesson: A Character Life Box
This language arts lesson offers a hands-on opportunity for students to understand characterization in literature and to connect historical and contemporary culture

5-8 Theater History, English
Children from the Janabi Village

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Children of War
This lesson explores the realities and effects of war on children by examining diaries, journals, and letters written by children during times of war

5-8 Theater Language Arts, Social Studies
Civil War Letters

Grade 5 Lesson: Civil War Letters
Using letters written during the Civil War students develop an understanding of the message of the letters. They will create a dramatic reading based on their letter.

5-8 Theater Social Studies, Language Arts
U.S. Army band on steps

Grade 5 Lesson: Civil War Music
Learn how music was used in the Civil War

5-8 Music History, Language Arts
Mural

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Decades Mural Project
Students will learn how to use primary sources, and work in groups to create murals about the events and trends of a decade of the twentieth century

5-8 Visual Arts, Media Arts Language Arts, Social Studies
Yellowstone National Park

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Discovering National Parks
Students will learn about the history of America's national parks, and learn about the role that artists played in their creation and maintenance

5-8 Media Arts Language Arts, Social Studies
Russian Folk Dancers

Grade 5 Lesson: Discovering Russian Folk Dance
Students will learn the Russian folk dance "Troika." Then, they will work in groups of three (the traditional grouping used in the "Troika") to research Russian culture and history.

5-8 Dance English, Language Arts, World Languages
Ballerina

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Elements of Ballet
Explore and discover the elements of dance by demonstrating various simple movements. This exercise will help assess the students’ level of experience and ability.

5-8 Dance Physical Education
Aesop's Fables

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Elements of Fables
This lesson focuses on describing the general literary elements in fables. In this particular lesson, students will recognize the key elements of a fable (moral, character, and figurative language).

5-8 Theater Language Arts
Midas' daughter turned to gold

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Elements of Myth
How can myths help to explain nature and science? Students will explore these themes in this lesson. Students will read and explore several myths, identifying the elements of this literary form.

5-8 Theater Language Arts, Science
Christoper Columbus

Grade 5 Lesson: Explorers’ Experience
Students will learn about world explorers by researching facts and information relating to the routes traveled. They will discuss what motivates people to want to discover and explore new places.

5-8 Visual Arts Geography, Language Arts
Paul Bunyon and his Big Blue Ox, Babe

Grade 5 Lesson: Exploring American Tall Tales
Students will explore the common elements of folktales and tall tales while learning how these tales built the spirit of the American people

5-8 Theater Language Arts
Russian Church

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Exploring Russian Folktales
Students are introduced to the genre of folktales and engage in a study of several Russian folktales. They are asked to read the tales aloud, and then to fill in a chart about each one.

5-8 Literary Arts, Theater History, Language Arts, World Languages, Social Studies
Fencers

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Fancy Fencing
Stage-fighting, and especially sword-fighting, is important to the plot of many Shakespearean plays. In theatre, fights are based on precise choreography.

5-8 Dance, Theater Physical Education
frog prince

Grade 5 Lesson: Finding Your Own Frog Prince
Students will use a traditional tale, “The Frog Prince,” and Jon Scieszka’s variation of it, The Frog Prince Continued, to create improvised scenes and then a book for a mini-musical.

5-8 Theater, Music Language Arts
sheet music

Grades 6-8 Lesson: First Rhythmic Composition
This lesson introduces students to rhythm concepts, including the names and symbols associated with music notation

5-8 Music Math
Second Bank of the United States, Philadelphia.

Grades 6-8 Lesson: From Greece to Main Street
Students will learn defining elements of classical Greek architecture by comparing the Lincoln Memorial with the Parthenon in Athens, Greece

5-8 Visual Arts History, English
Transparent Cell

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Get Inside a Cell!
In this lesson, students will gain an understanding of the components of an animal cell.

5-8 Visual Arts Science
Children in a Japanese Internment Camp

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Giving Voice to History
Students will understand a somber period in American history. During World War II, the U.S. government ordered more than 120,000 Japanese Americans to detainment camps.

5-8 Theater Language Arts, Social Studies
Bellerophon and the Chimera

Grade 5 Lesson: Greek Mythology: Cultures and Art
Gain insight into Greek culture and make aesthetic, perceptual, creative, and intellectual connections to contemporary culture by creating and painting mythological characters

5-8 Visual Arts Social Studies, History
Fish Painting

Grade 5 Lesson: Gyotaku Japanese Fish Printing
By acquiring knowledge of historical and cultural qualities unique to this particular art form, students can gain an understanding of how Gyotaku reflects a part of Japanese history

5-8 Visual Arts Science
moon and raven

Grade 5 Lesson: Haunting Music
Learn about orchestral “program music” inspired by the spooky and bizarre

5-8 Music, Visual Arts Language Arts
Cells Dividing

Grades 6-8 Lesson: How Do Cells Reproduce?
This activity illustrates the process of mitosis, or cell division, in yeast. Cells carry on the many functions needed to sustain life. The most important is the ability to reproduce.

5-8 Visual Arts Math, Science
Cells

Grades 6-8 Lesson: How Many Cells Are Born in a Day?
In this lesson, students use calculation to predict the number of cells that result from a series of cell divisions. They then graph the results to represent their findings.

5-8 Visual Arts Science, Math
Joseph Cornell Box

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Identity Boxes
Artists Lucas Samaras and Joseph Cornell both explored the idea of personal identity through their art. Both created small "portrait" boxes that reveal as well as conceal identity

5-8 Visual Arts Language Arts
Inspired by Muses

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Inspired by Muses, Graces and Fates
Muses of ancient Greece inspired poets, playwrights, dancers, actors, musicians, and scientists. Graces added life to a party and the Fates determined a life’s destiny.

5-8 Theater Language Arts, Social Studies
Martha Graham's Errand into the Maze

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Interpreting Mythology Through Dance
In this lesson, students learn about Ancient Egyptian rituals and attitudes about death and the afterlife.

5-8 Dance Social Studies
King Arthur

Grades 6-8 Lesson: King Arthur: Man or Legend
In this lesson, students will learn about the legend of King Arthur as depicted in stories, poems, and artwork

5-8 Theater, Visual Arts Language Arts, History
Lewis and Clark

Grade 5 Lesson: Lewis and Clark: Artful Recordings
In this lesson, students take on the roles of Lewis and Clark, as they explore the original journals and create journals of their own

5-8 Visual Arts, Literary Arts Science, Language Arts
Lewis and Clark Compass.

Grade 5 Lesson: Lewis And Clark Prized Possessions
In this lesson, students explore Native American crafts and design and create their own wampum belts

5-8 Visual Arts Math, Social Studies
Dancers in silhouette

Grade 5 Lesson: Lift Every Voice and Sing
Explore and analyze Lift Every Voice and Sing, a poem by James Weldon Johnson.

5-8 Visual Arts, Music History, Language Arts
Appomattox Court-House

Grade 5 Lesson: A Light in the Storm: A Personal Look at the Civil War
Create a historical timeline and personal event timeline based on the historical fiction book and play A Light in the Storm and its main character, Amelia Martin.

5-8 Theater Language Arts, Social Studies
Portrait of American artist Andy Warhol

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Making the Ordinary Pop
Pop art examines the distinction between "high art" and popular culture, and questions the role of the artist

5-8 Visual Arts Technology
Sand Mandala

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Mandalas, Polygons, and Symmetry
Students will explore the mathematics behind mandalas, including but not limited to shapes and symmetry

5-8 Visual Arts, Media Arts Math
Toy Advertisement

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Media Awareness: The Basics of Advertising
In the first of these three lessons, students will develop a general understanding of marketing and its influence.

5-8 Visual Arts Language Arts
Candy Advertisement

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Media Awareness: Helping a Product Cross the Finish Line
Students will complete their advertisements, adding in details (such as color and symbols) and background/foreground space on the picture plane.

5-8 Visual Arts Language Arts
Game Advertisement

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Media Awareness: Key Concepts in Advertising
In this second of three lessons, students will continue their exploration of concepts in advertising.

5-8 Visual Arts Language Arts
Still-Life with Bouquet of Flowers and Plums by Rachel Ruysch

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Medieval and Renaissance Art: Botanical Symbolism
For the medieval and the renaissance artists, flowers were part of a rich visual symbolism

5-8 Visual Arts Language Arts, Science, Social Studies
Migrant Workers

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Migrant Workers Through the Lens of Dorothea Lange
In this lesson, students will learn about migrant workers to better understand the environmental and social impact of the Great Depression.

5-8 Visual Arts Social Studies, History
moccasins

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Moccasins Are Made for Dancing
Students will read either of Tomie DePaola’s versions of two Native American legends: The Legend of the Bluebonnet or The Legend of the Indian Paintbrush.

5-8 Dance Language Arts, Social Studies
Grimm's Fairy Tales book

Grade 5 Lesson: Moving Tales
Students practice using their bodies to communicate through movement, improvisation, and pantomime games. Groups then read and interpret an assigned Grimm Brothers’ fairy tale

5-8 Theater Physical Education, Language Arts
The Solar System

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Planets in Balance
Students explore the solar system through experimentation of mobile design in the style of Alexander Calder

5-8 Visual Arts Science, Math
Scene from Twelfth Night

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Playing with Puns
This theater and language arts lesson offers intellectual, creative and interpretive opportunities. Students will analyze and compare the puns and word play in selected scenes

5-8 Theater Language Arts, History
Political Cartoon

Grade 5 Lesson: Political Cartoons as Part of the Election Process
Students will organize the information they researched on the U.S. presidential election process and constitutional rights.

5-8 Visual Arts Social Studies, History
Shadow Puppets

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Puppets on the Move: China and the Silk Road
Through map-making, research, and class discussions, students will gain an understanding of the dynamics of trade in China along the Silk Road

5-8 Theater, Visual Arts Language Arts, Social Studies
The African Slave Trade

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Reliving History Through Slave Narratives
After reading narratives from former slaves that were recorded in the 1930's as part of the Federal Writers' Project, students will research slavery

5-8 Theater Social Studies, Language Arts
Broom Bristles

Grade 5 Lesson: Searching For Cinderella
There are more than 300 versions and variations of the tale known as "Cinderella"

5-8 Music Language Arts, Geography
The Star Spangled Banner Sheet Music

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Set a Poem to Music
After exploring a “singable” picture book as a class, each student examines a personally selected poem for rhythm to determine its musical meter.

5-8 Music, Literary Arts English
Mali Mask

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Sundiata, Mali’s Lion King
This lesson introduces the legendary Malian king Sundiata Keita, known as the Lion King of Mali, by using elements of traditional Malian festivals.

5-8 Dance, Theater, Visual Arts Language Arts, Social Studies
Model of a human showing muscular striations kicking a soccer ball.

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Systems of the Body: Movement and Choreography
In this lesson, students will create movement patterns that express information about the basic systems, organs, and processes of the human body

5-8 Dance Language Arts, Physical Education
Paul Bunyon

Grade 5 Lesson: Tall Tales Today
In this lesson, students are introduced to the genre of American tall tales and will create an original tall tale featuring a "larger-than life" main character.

5-8 Theater Language Arts
Ballet Dancers

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Language of Ballet
This lesson introduces students to the French vocabulary of ballet. They will learn basic ballet vocabulary through both verbal and technological instruction.

5-8 Dance Physical Education
Shadow Puppet.

Grades 6-8 Lesson: The Science of Shadow Puppets
Through online learning tools and the creation of shadow puppets and plays, students will learn how light interacts with matter

5-8 Visual Arts, Theater Language Arts, Science
Women and Men

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Tolerance: Gender Issues
In this lesson, students research how professions such as nursing, clerking, and teaching have changed gender dominance over the past 150 years in the United States.

5-8 Theater Social Studies, Language Arts
trees

Grade 5 Lesson: Trees in Nature and Art
Students will explore the use of trees in the arts (as paintings and poetry), understand basic science involved in forestry, and integrate tree arts and science in a final project.

5-8 Literary Arts, Visual Arts Science
Man playing harmonica

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Twelve-Bar Blues
Learn about the history, key players and musical qualities of the blues

5-8 Music History
I Like Ike

Grade 5 Lesson: US Presidential Election Process and the Campaign Trail
Students will create an original political campaign song for a fictional presidential candidate.

5-8 Music History, Geography
word art

Grades 6-8 Lesson: A Way With Words or Say What?
Many words and phrases that we use every day were coined by Shakespeare. He is credited with inventing over 2,000 words and expressive phrases.

5-8 Theater, Visual Arts History, Language Arts
freedom-riders

Grades 6-8 Lesson: We Are The Freedom Riders
Students will learn about the courageous efforts of the Freedom Riders while embracing the bold theme, "We Will Overcome!" as a theme surrounding the civil rights movement.

5-8 Music Social Studies, History
Weather Patterns

Grade 5 Lesson: Weather and Wind
This lesson introduces the expanding and condensing properties of air masses and the unequal heating of Earth as the force behind the wind

5-8 Dance Science
President Obama being sworn in.

Grade 5 Lesson: Who Can Vote for President?
In this lesson, students will learn general facts about the voting process and its importance in a democratic form of government.

5-8 Visual Arts, Media Arts Social Studies, Language Arts
volcano

Grades 6-8 Lesson: A World of Myths
In this lesson, students will explore how myths help to explain nature and science.

5-8 Visual Arts, Literary Arts Language Arts
John Henry

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Writing Folktales
Students identify and analyze folktales. They learn the characteristics of folktales and use them to evaluate existing tales and to create original tales of their own.

5-8 Visual Arts, Literary Arts Social Studies, Language Arts
Mythical Gods

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Writing Myths
Students will explore how myths provide explanations for nature and science. They will read and analyze the Native American myth "Giants and Mosquitoes."

5-8 Theater, Literary Arts Science, Language Arts
Animals from a Fable

Grades 6-8 Lesson: Writing an Original Fable
In this lesson, students will use the steps of the writing process (brainstorming, drafting, revising, proofreading, and publishing) to write and perform original fables as skits.

5-8 Theater, Literary Arts Language Arts
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SUPPORTING INDIVIDUAL NEEDS

Use this collection of resources and articles to devise an approach for supporting individual needs in the classroom: from English Language Learners or students with disabilities, to conflict resolution and giving feedback.

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