Tuesday, September 6, 2011

1st Grade Trees

Last week, 1st grade finished the unit on line by learning about thick and thin lines. We used thick and thin lines to paint trees with watercolors, using the thickest line for the tree trunk, and the thinnest lines for the smallest branches. I showed the students how to make very thin lines using just the tip of their brush.

This week, the 1st graders are starting a unit on shape, beginning with symmetrical shapes. Since we had just made trees last week, with no leaves since we were focusing only on lines, I thought it would be fitting to make symmetrical leaves for our trees.

I began 1st grade today by drawing a few symmetrical leaves on the board, and discussing their shapes with the students. Then, I drew half of a few leaves for the students to finish, having them draw the mirror image. Once the students fully comprehended the concept of symmetry, I showed them how to make leaves by folding a paper in half and cutting an arc.

Last week, I let the students paint their tree in any color they wanted, so today I provided a wide range of color choices for the leaves. Some of the students went wild with blues and purples, but others took a more realistic route. Below is a finished tree by a student who clearly had the upcoming season of fall in mind.

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