Borelli, Carol, School Arts
Antique butterfly specimens collected from all over the world were the subject of three lessons for first and second grade students.
In the first lesson, the students observed the shapes, patterns and colors of these beautiful, exotic specimens. Then, each student completed a crayon drawing that reproduced one of the butterflies as exactly as possible. This assignment emphasized careful, scientific observation. To assure attention to detail, I told the students to "look like a scientist through a make-believe magnifying glass" and enlarge their butterfly to fill an 18 x 24" (46 x 61 cm! sheet of paper.
Shapes, Patterns, Colors
The following week's discussion focused on the shapes, patterns and colors the students discovered while observing the specimens. I asked the students to invent a butterfly and to keep these concepts in mind while drawing. I suggested that they paint the butterfly's body in the center of the paper using any color and then fill each side of the paper with interesting wing shapes.
We had observed from the specimens that butterflies have four wings. The students worked hard on symmetry, a concept discussed while examining the specimens.
Each student completed an 18 x 24" (46 x 61 cm) tempera painting. …