Friday, July 25, 2014

Rousseau Jungles with Kindergarten

Henri Rousseau was a French painter, who’s jungle pictures are an combination of memory images of his Mexican trip, visual experiences from visits to botanical gardens and zoos, and depictions of plants and wild animals he had seen on postcards and in photographs. 

-10.5" x 16" light blue paper
-12" x 18" colored paper for frame
-cut strips of brown paper
-pre-cut triangles of different shades of green paper (cut strips of 3" paper, then use paper cutter or scissors to slice diagonally for quick triangles)
-pre-cut squares (approx.  3" x 3") of greens, yellow, and/or orange paper
-white paper
-black marker
-colored pencils or markers

(Science Connection) Students will identify animals that live in the jungle, as well as the plant life that grows in the jungle environment.  Inspired by the paintings of Henri Rousseau, students will create their own jungle scene and hide animals within their environment.

This project can take about 3-40 minute class periods to make.  

On the first day, the students and I look at paintings by Henri Rousseau and identify the plants and animals in the jungle.  We then discuss how to create the jungle scene, starting with the plants and trees.  For the remainder of the class, students trim and glue down trees, branches, tree tops, tall grasses, and if time allows, a sun and fruit in the trees.

On the second day, I share ways to draw the animals using simple shapes.  Students choose at least 3 different animals for their picture, draw them on white paper, trace, then color.  I do not have students cut out on this day because clean-up is a mess with many little loose un-glued animals all over the ground.  

I've learned that leaving the cutting and pasting is best for day three, which also gives room for finishing touches (like the students who wanted to add a sun or finish a tree).  Have students trace a thin circle around the animals before cutting out.  This saves the trouble of having heads and tails accidentally cut off since students will have a line to follow instead.  Students can then glue down their animals wherever they wish in the jungle, as long as it's within where the animal should be (no turtles in the sky!).  When students have finished their jungle landscapes, glue a 12" x 18" paper to the back for a frame

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