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Visual Arts Resources

Fasten your smock, get out your art supplies, and prepare to get your hands dirty. Examine the physics behind Alexander Calder’s mobiles, the symbolism in the botany rendered in renaissance paintings, and the careful patience used in weaving a wampum belt in this exploration of a wide range of arts.

Grades K-2 Lesson
Use the visual art and language arts to creatively tell stories of monstrous proportions
Grade 5 Lesson
Viewing mobiles created by sculptor Alexander Calder, students learn about the function and form of levers
Grade 5 Lesson
Students learn about Charles Burchfield, then create an original watercolor
Grades 6-8 Lesson
Students will examine works of art and analyze and discuss photography
Grades 6-8 Lesson
Research information on artists' lives and works and prepare works of art
Grades 6-8 Lesson
Examine the political and economic reasons for the African-American migration to Northern cities between the World Wars
Grades 3-4 Lesson
In this lesson, each student creates an original comic strip to convey a mathematical concept and explores comics as a form of communication
Grades 9-12 Lesson
In this lesson, students will enhance their creative writing skills and develop their individual writing voices through surrealist techniques
Grades 3-4 Lesson
Experience the art and culture of Chinese calligraphy and ink painting through watercolor and Chinese instrumental music
Grades 6-8 Lesson
Students will work in groups to create murals about the events and trends of a decade of the twentieth century
Grades 9-12 Lesson
Analyzing political cartoons will allow students to develop both factual knowledge and interpretive skills
Grades 9-12 Lesson
This lesson will introduce the history and concepts of the Surrealist movement
Grades 9-12 Lesson
Students use age-old techniques to construct and decorate a burnished coil pot
Grades 3-4 Lesson
Students will examine paintings depicting different types of weather
Grades 9-12 Lesson
Learn how Mexican art at the beginning of the 20th century was influenced by historical events
Grades 3-4 Lesson
In this lesson, students will learn about the migration of African Americans to Harlem
Grade 5 Lesson
Gain insight into Greek culture, and create and paint your own mythological characters
Grade 5 Lesson
Students can gain an understanding of how Gyotaku reflects a part of Japanese history
Grades 3-4 Lesson
Using collage, students create a scene from the life of Harriet Tubman
Grades 3-4 Lesson
Examine Harriet Tubman's life through informative resources and impressionistic art
Grades 6-8 Lesson
Artists Lucas Samaras and Joseph Cornell both explore the idea of personal identity through their art
Grades 9-12 Lesson
This lesson explores the history and evolution of the Japanese woodblock print
Grades 9-12 Lesson
Using James Palmersheim's Silver Creek's November II as a starting point, students will create their own landscape paintings
Grades K-2 Lesson
This lesson introduces young students to different art styles and teaches them art-related vocabulary
Grade 5 Lesson
In this lesson, students explore Native American crafts and design and create their own wampum belts
Grades 3-4 Lesson
Students experiment with interpretative dance as they recreate the weaving process to Native American music
Grades 3-4 Lesson
Create a listening doll in the tradition of the Native American storyteller dolls
Grades 6-8 Lesson
Pop art examines the distinction between "high art" and popular culture, and questions the role of the artist
Grades 6-8 Lesson
Students will explore the mathematics behind mandalas, including but not limited to shapes and symmetry
Grades K-2 Lesson
Explore how illustrations contribute to the telling of a story using character maps
Grades K-2 Lesson
This multi-media visual and language arts lesson offers intellectual, creative, and interpretive opportunities
Grades 6-8 Lesson
For the medieval and the renaissance artists, flowers were important symbolism
Grades K-2 Lesson
Through guided reading of Ten Little Rabbits and hands-on activities students will explore aspects of Native American cultures and Navajo weavings
Grades 9-12 Lesson
The Fibonacci Sequence manifests in nature and visual arts
Grades 9-12 Lesson
Examine the social impact of photography
Grades 6-8 Lesson
Students explore the solar system through experimentation of mobile design in the style of Alexander Calder
Grade 5 Lesson
Organize information researched on the U.S. presidential election process and constitutional rights
Grades 9-12 Lesson
Learn about the three elements of art through a study of other artists
Grades 9-12 Lesson
In this lesson, students will explore connections between music and visual art
Grades 9-12 Lesson
Study the work of artist Cai Guo-Qiang and performance-oriented art
Grades 3-4 Lesson
Students grow both sunflowers, and their knowledge of science and art
Grade 5 Lesson
Students will explore the use of trees in paintings and poetry
Grades 3-4 Lesson
Students will explore three careers in visual arts - Fashion Design, Architecture, and Graphic Design
Grades 3-4 Lesson
Students are introduced to characteristics of the wind through poetry and van Gogh’s paintings
Tipsheet
Tips on how to foster interesting and authentic discussion in the classroom
Tipsheet
Here are the best and safest ways to share your student's work with the world!
Article
Help students build techniques to interpret what they see
Article
Ideas for making the most of a visit to an art museum
Article
Tips for how to set up DIY creative spaces for kids in your home
Field Guide
Everything you need to know before you go to an arts event in a gallery
The Story Behind The Picture
Dorothea Lange captured the hopelessness of the Great Depression in her first documentary photograph
Master + Work
See how Lange used her camera to tell the story of Depression-era Americans
Article
In The Problem We All Live With, artist Norman Rockwell took a stand against racism
Article
How to hear Bessie Smith “sing” in Romare Bearden’s art
Flash Interactive
Follow Cai Guo-Qiang and pyrotechnician Phil Grucci as they prepare their performance art piece
Flash Interactive
Learn about Shadow Puppetry and stage your own shadow plays!
Interactive
Get behind the work of the art world's Man of Steel
Audio Series
Explore how President Kennedy raised awareness of the importance of the arts
Video Series
Matt Alt explains the art and history of Japanese jumbo machinder toys
Video Series
An excerpt from Cai's Tornado: Explosion Project for the Kennedy Center
Video
“Alphabetical Engineer” Danny ‘Dan-One’ Polonco talks about graffiti art form as a means for self-expression
Video
A festive Otsukimi (Japanese moon-viewing) by shodo performing artist Koji Kakinuma
Video
Calligraphy artist Koji Kakinuma presents one of his trademark innovations, Trancework
Video
Shigeo Kawashima's sculptures take bamboo as an artistic medium to a new level
Video
Shin Tanaka is a Japanese artist, graffiti writer, paper toy creator, and designer
Video
Architect Tadao Ando explores sustainability and the environment
Video
The Terra Cotta Warriors are a collection of 8,000 statues that were buried over 2,000 years ago in the tomb of China's first emperor Qin Shi Huang
This Day in the Arts
February 11, 1934: Mary Quant is born in Blackheath, England
This Day in the Arts
February 18, 1848: Louis Comfort Tiffany is born in New York City
This Day in the Arts
February 25, 1841: Pierre-Auguste Renoir is born in Limoges, France
This Day in the Arts
March 06, 1475: Michelangelo is born in Caprese, Italy
This Day in the Arts
March 30, 1853: Vincent Van Gogh is born in Zundert, The Netherlands
This Day in the Arts
March 31, 1889: The Eiffel Tower is inaugurated in Paris, France
This Day in the Arts
April 06, 1483: Raphael is born in Urbino, Italy
This Day in the Arts
April 11, 1869: Sculptor Gustav Vigeland is born in Mandal, Norway
This Day in the Arts
April 15, 1452: Leonardo da Vinci is born in Florence, Italy
This Day in the Arts
April 20, 1893: Joan Miró is born in Barcelona, Spain
This Day in the Arts
May 11, 1904: Salvador Dali is born in Figueres, Spain
This Day in the Arts
May 15, 1923: Richard Avedon is born in New York City
This Day in the Arts
June 08, 1867: Frank Lloyd Wright is born in Richland Center, Wisconsin
This Day in the Arts
June 22, 2009: Kodak discontinues manufacturing Kodachrome film
This Day in the Arts
July 05, 1946: Louis Reard introduces the bikini
This Day in the Arts
July 15, 1606: Rembrandt is born in Leiden, The Netherlands
This Day in the Arts
July 19, 1834: Edgar Degas is born in Paris, France
This Day in the Arts
August 06, 1928: Andy Warhol is born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
This Day in the Arts
August 10, 1903: Eleanor Lambert is born in Crawfordsville, Indiana
This Day in the Arts
August 19, 1839: Daguerre presents the first daguerreotype
This Day in the Arts
September 10, 1890: Elsa Schiaparelli is born in Rome, Italy
This Day in the Arts
September 12, 1940: Cave paintings are discovered in Lascaux, France
This Day in the Arts
September 21, 1912: Chuck Jones is born in Spokane, Washington
This Day in the Arts
September 30, 1902: Binney & Smith is incorporated
This Day in the Arts
October 02, 1950: Peanuts debuts in the funny pages
This Day in the Arts
October 08, 1946: Christian Dior opens his first fashion house in Paris, France
This Day in the Arts
October 20, 1973: The Sydney Opera House opens in Australia
This Day in the Arts
October 21, 1959: The Guggenheim Museum opens in New York City
This Day in the Arts
October 27, 1923: Roy Lichtenstein is born in New York City
This Day in the Arts
October 31, 1632: Johannes Vermeer is baptized in Delft, The Netherlands
This Day in the Arts
November 04, 1914: Vogue throws the first fashion show in New York City
This Day in the Arts
November 14, 1840: Claude Monet is born in Paris, France
This Day in the Arts
November 15, 1887: Georgia O’ Keeffe is born in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin
This Day in the Arts
December 01, 1761: Marie Tussaud is born in Strasbourg, France
This Day in the Arts
December 31, 1869: Henri Matisse is born in Le Cateau-Cambresis, France
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