LITTLE DINOSAUR – Printmaking, Illustrating a Story

Students use a Styrofoam plate and tempera paint to make a print of a motif for a story they have written about dinosaurs.

Required Time

80 Minutes

Grade Level

Grade 1 to Grade 3

Subject

Language Arts
Science
Visual Arts

Vocabulary

brayer illustration line motif pattern repetition shape texture

Materials

Crayola Tempera Paint Styrofoam Tray Ball Point Pen Soft Roller Plastic Tray Construction Paper – 22.9 cm x 30.5 cm (9” X 12”) Magazines Paper

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Steps

LITTLE DINOSAUR – Printmaking, Illustrating a Story - Step One

Step One

Make 4 thumbnail sketches of dinosaurs and plants. Choose the one you like the best for your print. 

LITTLE DINOSAUR – Printmaking, Illustrating a Story - Step Two

Step Two

Draw into the Styrofoam using a ball point pen. Add more details, and lines and dots to create texture and pattern. This is your printing plate.

LITTLE DINOSAUR – Printmaking, Illustrating a Story - Step Three

Step Three

Place 2 magazines beside each other. One will be for putting the paint on your Styrofoam plate. The other will be for making the print. Place the Styrofoam plate on a page of one of the open magazines. Place a piece of paper on a page of the other open magazine. Pour 2 primary colours of tempera paint into a plastic tray. 

LITTLE DINOSAUR – Printmaking, Illustrating a Story - Step Four

Step Four

Gently roll the soft roller into the paint to make a new colour and to cover the roller with paint. 

LITTLE DINOSAUR – Printmaking, Illustrating a Story - Step Five

Step Five

Roll the paint over the Styrofoam plate. This is called inking the plate.

LITTLE DINOSAUR – Printmaking, Illustrating a Story - Step Six

Step Six

Gently lift the inked plate off the magazine page. Place the inked Styrofoam plate face down on the paper that is on the other magazine page. 

LITTLE DINOSAUR – Printmaking, Illustrating a Story - Step Seven

Step Seven

Turn the clean magazine page onto the back of the inked plate. 

LITTLE DINOSAUR – Printmaking, Illustrating a Story - Step Eight

Step Eight

Rub your hand, or a printmaking brayer, over the magazine page which is on top of the Styrofoam plate. This will transfer the paint to the paper. 

LITTLE DINOSAUR – Printmaking, Illustrating a Story - Step Nine

Step Nine

Turn the magazine page back. Carefully pull the Styrofoam plate off the paper to see your print. Place it in a safe place to dry. 

LITTLE DINOSAUR – Printmaking, Illustrating a Story - Step Ten

Step Ten

A motif is a design or shape that may be repeated in a work for decoration or to help tell a story. Make a smaller design of a dinosaur motif to help tell your story. 

LITTLE DINOSAUR – Printmaking, Illustrating a Story - Step Eleven

Step Eleven

Print the small motif on each end of your big print to complete your illustration.

Learning Goals

Students will be able to:

  1. Create a relief print using a Styrofoam tray and tempera paint;
  2. Create an illustration for a story they have written about dinosaurs;
  3. Use repetition of line and pattern to create rhythm;
  4. Demonstrate technical accomplishment and creativity; and
  5. Support their ideas with evidence found in the works.

Extensions

  1. Have students use primary colours and white to mix a variety of colours and tints and use them to make a series of prints. 
  2. Have children work with another class to share their stories and teach their peers how to make prints.

Prepare

  1. Prior to this lesson have children experiment with relief printmaking using found objects. See techniques lesson on this website.
     Exploring Line.
  2. Download the Colour and Line posters available on this website.
    Posters 
  3. Gather picture books about dinosaurs, for example, Boy, Were We Wrong About Dinosaurs, by Kathleen V Kudlinski, Big Book of Dinosaurs, by Alex Frith, First Facts Dinosaurs, by DK, National Geographic Little Kids First Big Book of Dinosaurs, by Catherine D. Hughes
  4. Have children find answers to their own questions about dinosaurs through and inquiry-based learning project. As part of their research have them write stories about their favourite dinosaur. 
  5. Create a sample.

Introduction

  1. Place students into small groups.
  2. Provide each group with a picture book about dinosaurs.
  3. Ask students to look at the illustrations in the book very carefully.
  4. Provide each group with the Plus/Minus/Interesting chart. (Download - PMI_Chart.pdf) 
  5. Ask groups to list the things about the illustrations that go in each column.
  6. Discuss ideas with the whole class.
  7. Make a list of the characteristics of illustrations that appeal to them the most. During the discussion draw attention to the use of colour, line, pattern, and space.
  8. Explain that they are going to create an illustration for their story.
  9. Show students the printing plate and the print you have created. Ask them to discuss what they notice about the print compared to the Styrofoam printing plate. (Design is reversed, effect of line and colour.)
  10. Introduce the challenge.

Activities

The Challenge

  1. Create a relief print using a Styrofoam tray and tempera paint.
  2. Create an illustration for a story you have written about dinosaurs.
  3. Use repetition of line and pattern to create rhythm.
  4. Demonstrate technical accomplishment and creativity.
  5. Support your ideas with evidence found in the works.

The Process

  1. ​Guide students through the steps outlined in this lesson plan.
  2. Demonstrate how to draw into the Styrofoam and how to make the print. 
  3. Remind students that the design will be reversed when it is printed
  4. Observe students as they work.
  5. Provide individual assistance and encouragement.

Sharing

  1. Once all the prints are complete ask students to share them in partners or small groups. 
    Ask them to:
    Look closely at the illustrations.
    - Share thoughts about the work.
    - Talk about how line and pattern are used to create rhythm.
    - Discuss how the illustrations help to tell the story.

    - Talk about what was difficult about making the print and why.
    - Tell what was satisfying about making the print and why.
  2. Ask some students to share their ideas with the whole class.
  3. Display the illustrations along with the stories so students can view them throughout the next few weeks.
     

Assessment

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