Monday, February 20, 2012

3rd Grade Onomatopoeia Pop Art Words

Based on art by Roy Lichtenstein: 


  1. I love this! How did you teach/describe to your kids how to do it? I have first graders who would love this.
    Thanks in advance!

    1. I showed the students some artwork by Roy Lichtenstein, and then I gave them a list of about 40 onomatopoeic words. Together, we spent about 10 minutes coming up with ideas for each word. For example, I would pick a word (like "pop") and ask the kids what goes "pop!". If a kid says a balloon, I'd draw on the board what it might look like, all the while asking the kids for suggestions (should half of the balloon be be above the word and half of it below the word? How should the letters look?) We talked about how the letters themselves could be the picture, or you could add things around the letters. We talked about how Lichtenstein used only primary colors, so we did too. I told the kids to paint all of the letters the same color so the word is easy to read (some didn't get the memo, as you can see from above).

      Once we'd finished our brain-storming session, the students got a piece of copy paper, and divided it into 4 boxes. They had to sketch out 4 ideas before picking the best one. The next week, we drew our designs with pencils, traced over the outlines with markers (we talked about how Roy Lichtenstein used outlines to make his art look like cartoons), and then we painted the design with primary colors.

      A trick to make bubble letters is to draw the letter very lightly with pencil, and then outline it.

      I personally think this project would be difficult for most 1st graders. Bubble letters are hard for anyone below third grade. However, you could have the kids trace the letters or something; but the style of the letters helps convey the message as well. For example with a word like "zoom" I would do italic letters. For a word like "bang" or "bam" or "pow" I would do really large letters.

      I hope this helps :). You would have to modify the lesson quite a bit to work with younger students.