Thursday, December 8, 2011

Erica's Alphabet Soup

Last year, Erica, who blogs at Art Project Girl, organized a group share of sub lesson plans. Probably my favorite lesson in the bunch was hers, because it was simple and clear, did not require any special books, art prints, or strange materials, had educational value, and I thought the kids would enjoy it and be successful.

I decided to use this lesson before Thanksgiving when I was going to be out of school to attend my state conference. I introduced the project briefly to the kids in grade 3 & 4 as they were finishing another project, and they completed the work with the sub when I was out.

The basic instructions: use a Sharpie to write every letter of the alphabet. Each letter had to touch either another letter or the edge of the paper. Then use markers to fill the spaces that are formed with patterns and designs. We talked a bit about composition, and I gave kids permission to repeat letters if they had big empty spaces that they wanted to fill or if they had letters that weren't touching. This bulletin board below is the work of the 3rd graders. I didn't photograph the 4th grade work.

Thanks, Erica, for a great lesson!


  1. Awesome! Thanks Phyl, I'm glad the kids liked it. Some students really made some interesting compositions. I think it is so liberating when they learn they can go OFF the page. For years there seems to be an invisible fence around their pictures and in about 3rd grade they start breaking the rectangle. . . at least my groups do. Some of them even started changing the size of the letters which is cool and gives it depth:) I might use this as a sub lesson too. I have to be out a part day this week. Thanks!

  2. Hi, Phyl......I posted a link to this post (and Erica's) on my newest blog, Art Sub Lessons. jan