Objective: To enhance writing through the use of textured visual art using string art
Age: 5+ Time: 30-45 minutes (writing varies) Grades: Kindergarten +
- Yarn (or string or floss thread)
- Tempera paint
- Art Tray
- Paint cups
- Construction paper
- Glue or tape
- Lined paper
String Art Writing Lesson
1) Choose a tray to place your paper on to confine your visual. Holding it is optional if you have someone to do that for you.
2) Fill small containers/plates with various tempera paints.
3) Use string or yarn to cover in paint either by brush the paint on with a paintbrush it or placing the yarn into a paint-filled container.
4) Press the yarn onto the paper, overlapping patterns and creating lines. Notice the heavier the paint, the thicker the lines!
5) Your lines will change due to the direction you place your string or yarn, as well as the thickness of the paint. Repeat this, changing colors as desired. What happens when you ‘flick’ the string/yarn against the paper being held?
6) Carefully let the visual dry. NOTE: If you leave it in the tray, your painting may get stuck.
7) Attach your painting to colored construction paper to accentuate the details. You can use glue or tape.
8) Choose your writing to enhance your picture and display creatively.
Assess the students for their use of creativity and sense of subject setting. Depending on what you are evaluating will determine the outcome of your assessment. You can assess for oral presentation skills and comprehension of their ‘topic’ of study. Perhaps you can asses for rich vocabulary or descriptive language, due to the art mediums and texture displayed. Prepare the students in advance so they know that you are looking for. See “Other Ways to Use This Lesson”.
Other Ways to Use this Lesson
You can trim the edges of your string art painting with shape shears or cut it entirely into a different shape. Attach your painting to colored paper and display as one piece or cut into pieces and glue, overlapping pieces as a mosaic piece of art. Ask the children what the visual reminds them of and that can become their topic to write about. Perhaps you may want to add sand to the wet lines and dry to add texture. Feel free to add stickers or pre-cut shapes after it dries, to enhance your topic. Remember, kids are easily stimulated by color, texture and movement. Their oral and written language will undoubtedly be inspired through hands-on experiences, so let them engage with a variety of art mediums. Have your children write a poem or write across the painting with marker, using it as a backdrop. Create a card or invitation for someone special. Attach a pre-cut animal shape and write riddles, make fact cards, or write a descriptive or informational paragraph. Whatever you do, there are no strings attached!
About the Author:
Kim Waltmire is a state and national award-winning educator. She holds an honorary seat with the 2006 USA Today All-Star Teacher team. Kim is a graduate from CCSU with a Masters in Early Childhood Education. She published a writing & literacy book; Picturesque Writing, now self-published as The Art of Visual Writing for elementary teachers K-5. Kim also published a Read-Along Series for primary grades, coupled with spelling, grammar, science and social studies lessons for k-12 with a home-school company. Her writing and Project Based Learning strategies were recognized and published in the Creative Classroom Teacher’s magazine; May/June 1998 issue. She was recognized for her educational contributions and Project Based Learning by Oprah Winfrey, interviewed on CNN, Fox News, and honored by the CT State Governor several times. Kim has taught elementary school for 28 years and presently an Educational Literacy Consultant. Kim’s passion is teaching writing literacy for all learning styles.