POLLINATOR POSTCARD – Printmaking, Colour, Shape

Students use a Styrofoam board and broad line markers to make relief prints on postcards that they send to friends to celebrate Pollinator Week.

Required Time

60 Minutes

Grade Level

Grade 1 to Grade 3

Subject

Language Arts
Science
Visual Arts

Vocabulary

colour mirror image printmaking relief print shape

Materials

Crayola Broad Line Markers Crayola Scissors Cardstock Paper - 21.6 cm x 28 cm (8 ½" x 11") - 2 per student Ball Point Pens - 1 per student Styrofoam Boards - 10.8 cm x 14 cm (4 ¼" x 5 ½") - 1 per student Small Pieces of Sponge - about 3 cm x 3 cm (1 ¼" x 1 ¼") - 1 per student Water Containers Paper Towels

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Steps

POLLINATOR POSTCARD – Printmaking, Colour, Shape - Step One

Step One

  1. Think of the pollinators you know and what they need to stay healthy.
  2. Use a ball point pen to draw a picture of a pollinator in action on the Styrofoam board.
  3. Cut a soft shape around your picture – or you can skip this step and leave it as a rectangle.
POLLINATOR POSTCARD – Printmaking, Colour, Shape - Step Two

Step Two

  1. Colour your picture with Crayola broad line markers.
  2. Be careful not to leave fingerprints.
  3. This is your printing plate.
POLLINATOR POSTCARD – Printmaking, Colour, Shape - Step Three

Step Three

  1. Dip a small piece of sponge in water and squeeze some of the water out.
  2. Drag the sponge across the postcards to dampen the paper.
  3. Do not get the paper too wet.
    - The moisture in the paper will pick up the marker ink.
    - If the paper is too wet the ink will smear and the print will be blurry.
    - If the paper is too dry it won't pick up the ink and the print will be pale.
POLLINATOR POSTCARD – Printmaking, Colour, Shape - Step Four

Step Four

  1. Place the postcard on top of your printing plate.
  2. Hold it firmly in place and rub your hands back and forth over the paper.
  3. Feel where the edges of the printing plate are and be sure to press on them.
POLLINATOR POSTCARD – Printmaking, Colour, Shape - Step Five

Step Five

  1. Gently lift the paper off the printing plate.
  2. What do you notice about the print?
POLLINATOR POSTCARD – Printmaking, Colour, Shape - Step Six

Step Six

  1. Write something about pollinators or a thank you for being bee friendly on the back of the print.
  2. Mail it to a friend during Pollinator Week.

Learning Goals

Students will be able to:

  • create a relief print using a Styrofoam board and broad line markers.
  • create a design that includes a pollinator;
  • print 4 postcards;
  • write a message on their postcards and send them to 4 different friends;
  • use lines and shapes to communicate ideas;
  • demonstrate technical accomplishment and creativity;
  • support their ideas with evidence found in the artworks.

Extensions

Have students:

  • use the Stencil a Pollinator lesson plan available on this website to create a message about pollinators;
  • create a display about the importance of pollinators that includes their stencil prints;
  • share their display with another class and demonstrate how to make prints about pollinators.

Prepare

  1. Prior to this lesson you may want to have students experiment with relief printmaking using found objects using the Exploring Line lesson plan available on this website.
  2. Download and display the Colour, Shape and Repetition posters  available on this website.
  3. Cut Styrofoam board into 9.5 cm x 13 cm (3.75" x  5") rectangles - 1 per student.
  4. Cut sponges into 3 cm x 3 cm (1.25" x 1.25") piece - 1 per student.
  5. Photocopy and cut the postcard paper - 2 per student. (Downloads - PostcardTemplate.pdf)
  6. Gather, and make available books about pollinators, e.g., What If There Were No Bees?: A Book About the Grassland Ecosystem (Food Chain Reactions), by Suzanne Buckingham Slade, and Carol Schwartz; Give Bees a Chance, by Bethany Barton; Flower Talk: How Plants Use Color to Communicate, by Sara Levine, Masha D'yans; What Is Pollination?, by Bobbie Kalman; The Reason for a Flower: A Book About Flowers, Pollen, and Seeds, by Ruth Heller ; From Seed to Plant, by Gail Gibbons; and Bees, Bugs, and Butterflies: A Family Guide to Our Garden Heroes and Helpers, by Ben Raskin.
  7. Teach students about the importance of pollinators and Pollinator Week
  8. Prepare materials to use for a demonstration.

Introduction

  1. Conduct a read-aloud with a book such as Bees, Bugs, and Butterflies: A Family Guide to Our Garden Heroes and Helpers, by Ben Raskin focusing on:
    - the importance of pollinators;
    - how pollinators work;
    - flower preferences for different insects.
  2. Make a list of pollinators on a chart paper.
  3. Demonstrate the process for making a relief print using the Styrofoam board and broad line marker.
  4. Introduce the challenge

Activities

The Challenge

  1. Create a relief print using a Styrofoam board and broad line markers.
  2. Create a design that includes a pollinator.
  3. Print 4 postcards.
  4. Write a message on your postcards and send them to 4 different friends.
  5. Use lines and shapes to communicate ideas.
  6. Demonstrate technical accomplishment and creativity.
  7. Support your ideas with evidence found in the artworks.

The Process

  1. Ensure that everyone understands the challenge.
  2. Establish success criteria with your students, for example,
    I know I am successful when I have:
    - created a relief print

    - printed 4 postcards
    - written a message to 4 different friends
    - sent my postcards to 4 different friends
    - used line and shape to communicate information about pollinators 
    - kept my prints in good condition
  3. Demonstrate the technique as you guide students through the steps outlined in this lesson plan.
  4. Observe students as they work.
  5. Provide individual assistance and encouragement.

Sharing

  1. Place students into small groups. 
  2. Ask them to: 
    - View the works carefully.
    - Talk about what they like about each others' work, and why.

    - Describe to each other how they decided what to draw.
    - Talk about what they found challenging to do when making their prints and how they solved the problem.
    - Talk about what they can learn from the designs.
  3. Share ideas with the whole class. 
  4. Ask them to tell how they felt about doing this project.

Assessment

  1. Observe students as they work – thoughtful focus, discriminating, seeking more information, elaborating, experimenting.
  2. Observe students as they discuss their postcards – speaks with a clear voice, looks at audience while speaking, points to areas in the print, provides accurate information, answers questions from the audience effectively.
  3. Observe students as they listen – looks at presenter, asks effective questions, supports ideas with evidence found in the print.
  4. Use a checklist to track progress. (Downloads – PollinatorPostcard_tracking.pdf)
  5. Have students use the self-assessment form to evaluate their work. (Downloads – PollinatorPostcard_self-assessment.pdf)