Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Book smART!

Hi everyone! It's Joanna from We Heart Art, taking a break from the Holiday hoop-la to give you a little Art inspiration for the New Year!

Using children's books as inspiration for art projects is one of my favorite "stepping-off-points" for many of the projects we do in my class. Here are two of my favorite projects for my kindergartners, using books that you (may) have never heard of! My kindergartners LOVE having a tangible idea of what their artwork may look like seeing it in an illustration first.

The first book is called "I Ain't Gonna Paint No More" by Karen Beaumont. This book, and it's sing-songy silly storyline will have you singing the entire time you are working! Trust me, you can't help yourself!

The book is about a mischievous little boy who gets into paint and makes a HUGE mess in his house. I have my students draw large pictures of themselves with crayon, drawing themselves as the little angels that they are (ha!). They love it because they have NO idea what is going to happen next! Next, I whip out the splatter box. You can click here to see how I use my splatter box in my classroom and how much fun the kids have splattering away! It is possible to make a mess and have fun in a controlled way with kinders in Art class!

(side note: i LOVE the blonde eyebrows with the black hair on this one!)

The next book I love using for my kinders is a book called "Jeremy Draws a Monster" by Peter McCarty. Jeremy learns his lesson about drawing a grumpy monster. I use string to teach my students about organic-vs-geometric shapes, but you could go in any direction with this project.

For a visual of the entire process, you can check out my blog right here. I just adore how honest and colorful all of these monsters are...and I can assure you that NONE of them are as rude as the monster that Jeremy drew!

Our ringleader here at PreK and K Sharing, Debbie Clement, even has a free download of a super-cute song called "Monster Spray" that would be great to incorporate into this lesson.

Sometimes, inspiration for art projects is right in front of your eyes and in the books you read every day! For more literacy-related art lesson plans including Tar Beach and others, check out my classroom blog!

I am Joanna Davis and I write a blog called "We Heart Art" (http://www.ourartlately.blogspot.com/). I am a National Board Certified Art Teacher and teach Kindergarten through Fifth Grade Art at Garden Elementary School in Venice, Florida. Ihave over 600 "MONSTERS" that inspire me creatively each day and keep me on my toes. I challenge you to look beyond the coloring sheets for artistic inspiration!

TBA's Ultimate Linky Party
Editor's Note: This post has been added to our very first LINKIE Party here at PreK+K Sharing, in an effort to help keep track of these brilliant resources! Just click the button for the master list of PAINTING ideas!
PreK + K Sharing


  1. LUV LUV LUV anything + everything that ties work, process, response to picture books!!! What great examples here, Joanna. LUV LUV LUV!

    Thanks so much for the shout out to my Monster Spray Mp3 give-away. What complete fun that would be: tie my song, to this picture book to the children creating their own monsters: win, win, win!!!


  2. these turned out so cool! I will link to you when I write about Monster - soon. :)

  3. What fun! I LOVE the literature- based art examples, Joanna! I pinned your post to my literature-based activities Pinterest board at http://pinterest.com/debchitwood/literature-based-activities/

  4. I absolutely LOVE your two activities. I too love bringing children's literature and art together! My children love "I Ain't Gonna Paint No More" and I can't wait to try out your art project with them.
    Thanks so much for sharing,

  5. Those are awesome ideas. I pinned this post in my Arts and Crafts board. Thanks for sharing with Afterschool!

  6. This is one of our favorite books(I Ain't Gonna Paint No More!) I love the spatter paint technique! Way to combine art and literacy! Thanks for linking up to the We LOVE paint linky!


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