Kindergarten students want to do challenging things like drawing stars, so I take advantage of this interest and create a lesson around it. At this age, the children really need to develop listening skills. I introduce the lesson by telling students that really good listeners think about how books relate to their own life. I also let them know that this helps them understand books and the directions for what we are drawing better.
Children, come join me at the rug. Today, I will be sharing a story with you, but also teaching a drawing lesson. How many of you can draw a star? I will be showing you three different types of stars that I know how to draw. If you are a careful listener, you will be thinking about how this story relates to you and that through careful listening, you will learn to draw a star.
Here are the three stars that I can draw. (I draw them on the board so they can begin to anticipate what they will be learning.)
Take Note: Eric Carle was very liberal in the paintings of man and woman. I took post it notes and covered them appropriately.
Here is the story of Draw Me a Star. The first star says, "Draw me the sun"; the sun says, "Draw me a tree," and so on: woman and man; house, dog, cat, bird, butterfly, flowers, cloud; a rainbow arching over the middle-aged artist's whole creation; and back to the night and the stars. Who can tell me something that they can relate to their own lives? What do you think about the man at the end floating away on the star?
The children give a number of thoughts about the story. Someone relates to the dog, someone else talks about the butterfly, one child makes the connection of the old man going to Heaven like his grandpa did.
At the end of the story, there are directions for making an eight-pointed star. It is very complicated for young children but I tell them that they are up to the challenge.
We are going to draw some stars today. I will give you a piece paper. It is a large piece of paper so that we will have lots of room to practice drawing stars. I do not expect you to draw a good star until we have practiced four or five times. Let's start with the easiest of the stars--a six-sided star. Draw a straight line across from left to right and then make an upside down triangle from it. Now we will overlap the upside down triangle with a right side up triangle. Let's practice that a couple more times.
Now let's try a five-pointed star. Draw a line straight across from left to right. Under the line, you will be drawing an X with the top two arms will touch each end of the line. Next you will draw an angled line from the bottom "legs", past the straight line and meeting at the top like the letter "A". We will practice this a couple of times, too.
At the end of the book, there are directions for drawing an eight-pointed star. I will read it step by step, and each time I will wait until you each draw the line that I indicated. If you get stuck, raise your hand, but do not get discouraged if you do not get this the first time. It sometimes takes four or five times before we make a good star. There is lots of room on the other side of the paper for you to practice. I think you are up for the challenge! Let's try.
Once the children have had some practice, I give them each an 8x8" square of card stock. One the card stock, the child will draw one of any of the styles of stars and then trace it with a black crayon. The star gets cut out, and then with a combination of glue and water, the children glue tissue squares to the star. If the squares are sticking off the edge of the star, the child can just fold the extra around the edge. Before the glue dries, the star gets sprinkled with glitter.
As your stars are drying, you will be writing about your fabulous star. You will be filling in the sentence frame with your personal comments about your star. If you are not sure about how to spell the word that you want, what could you do? You could use the word wall; ask a friend; sound it out; look at the other resources in the room or look in your writing folder. When your star is dry, you will glue it to your paper. I will be coming around to listen to you share your ideas and to ask how today's story related to you.