BOOK REMARK – Texture, Detail, Contrast

Students use coloured pencils to create a bookmark that represents a character from a book they have read, and write a review of the book on both sides of it.

Required Time

120 Minutes

Grade Level

Grade 4 to Grade 8


Language Arts
Visual Arts


contrast detail texture


Crayola Scissors Crayola Fine Line Markers Crayola Twistables Coloured Pencils - 24 Count Cardstock Paper - 10.8 cm x 28 cm (4 ¼" x 11") - 1 per student Rulers Pencils Erasers

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BOOK REMARK – Texture, Detail, Contrast - Step One

Step One

  1. Choose the character you want to use to represent the book.
  2. Draw the head and shoulders of the character at the top of the paper.
BOOK REMARK – Texture, Detail, Contrast - Step Two

Step Two

  1. Use coloured pencils to colour the drawing. 
  2. Add details and pattern. 
  3. Add the following to the bottom half of the paper:
    - TITLE of the book
    - AUTHOR
    - RATING
    - REASON 
  4. Outline everything in marker.
BOOK REMARK – Texture, Detail, Contrast - Step Three

Step Three

  1. Cut out around the shoulders and head at the top of the paper.  
BOOK REMARK – Texture, Detail, Contrast - Step Four

Step Four

  1. Turn the paper over.
  2. Draw the back of the head and shoulders on the back of the paper
  3. Make sure they line up with the front.
    - You may want to place the paper on a window or blank computer screen to see the outline of the front.
  4. Mark 1 cm spaces with dots down both sides of the lower half of the paper.
  5. Draw lines across the paper to connect the dots. 
BOOK REMARK – Texture, Detail, Contrast - Step Five

Step Five

  1. Write a summary of the story in a way that helps people decide whether or not they want to read it.
  2. Be sure the information is accurate and interesting on both sides of the book remark.
  3. Display the book remark beside the book. 

Learning Goals

Students will be able to:

  • create a bookmark that represents a character from a book they have read; 
  • use visual detail to communicate information about the character;
  • create the illusion of texture using line and contrast;
  • write a review of the book on both sides of the bookmark;
  • demonstrate technical accomplishment and creativity; 
  • support their ideas with evidence found in the artworks.


Have students:

  • work in small groups;
  • using their book remarks as if they were puppets;
  • create an animated conversation among the various characters they created;
  • encourage students to:
    - imagine how the characters would respond to each other
    - make sure their characters remain in role
    - have the characters tell about their experiences based on the details in the story.


  1. Pre-cut the cardstock paper – 10.8 cm x 28 cm (cut pieces of cardstock in half vertically).
  2. Provide time for students to choose and read a book they are interested in.
  3. Teach students how to write a review of a book they have read and provide time for them to write their own review.
    Stage 1:
    - look at the book itself, cover, words on the page, illustrations
    - read the book and pay attention to how it makes you feel as you read

    Stage 2:
    ​- write rough notes to tell your overall feelings about the book,
    - how would you rate it out of 5
    - what was in the book that made you feel that way
    - what characters stood out and why
    - what about the physical appearance of the book appealed to you, or not

    Stage 3:
    - write a summary of the book
    Stage 4:
    - give the book a rating out of 5 and explain why
  4. Choose several books to use as examples when describing the project.
  5. If time permits make a sample. 


  1. Show the class a book, for example, Bully, by Patricia Polacco. 
  2. Discuss the cover, placement of words on the page, illustrations.
  3. Ask how many students think they would like to read the book based on the discussion so far. Have them explain their reasons.
  4. Explain:
    - artists design books so they will appeal to readers and provide a sense of what the book is about
    - book reviewers write to tell potential readers what to expect in a book and how good they think it is
    - both roles contribute to the chances of the book being read by lots of people
  5. Introduce the challenge.


The Challenge

  1. Create a bookmark that represents a character from a book you have read. 
  2. Use visual detail to communicate information about the character.
  3. Create the illusion of texture using line and contrast.
  4. Write a review of the book on both sides of the bookmark.
  5. Demonstrate technical accomplishment and creativity.
  6. Support your ideas with evidence found in the works.

The Process

  1. Make sure everyone understands the challenge.
  2. Establish success criteria with your students, for example,
    I know I am successful when I:
    - use visual details that communicate information about the character
    - use line and contrast to create texture
    - write an effective summary of the book
    - give the book a rating out of 5
    - explain my rating
    - make sure the finished artwork is in good condition
  3. Guide students through the steps outlined in this lesson plan.
  4. Observe students as they work. 
  5. Provide individual assistance and encouragement.


  1. Place students into small groups. 
  2. Ask them to share their work and discuss the things that are especially effective and why.
    Talk about:
    - the visual details and how they influence the viewer
    - the ratings and how the explanation supports it
    - how the Book Remark influences your decision whether or not to read the book 
  3. Share ideas with the whole class. 
  4. Ask students to tell how they felt about doing this project.


  1. Observe students as they work – thoughtful focus, discriminating, seeking more information, elaborating, experimenting
  2. Observe students as they discuss the Book Remarks – active listening, insightful contributions, supporting ideas with evidence found in the artwork and from personal experience.
  3. Use a checklist to track progress. (Downloads – Remark_tracking.pdf)
  4. Have students use the self-assessment form to evaluate their work. (Downloads – Remark_self-assessment.pdf)