Visual and Performing Arts Teacher Resources

Visual and Performing Arts resources foster different forms of creative expression, whether through drama, music, film, dance, or visual art, and teach students to value aesthetics. In addition, they provide learners with the historical and cultural contexts for events.       

Hands-on activities can be used to introduce young learners to the concept of symmetry while an activity for middle schoolers connects art, advertising, and nutrition. Other lessons, activities, and videos permit students to discover the themes, values, and traditions of world cultures.       

The arts have long been used to draw attention to and encourage response to important social issues, environmental concerns, and even the horrors of war. Here’s an article packed with suggestions for how to integrate the arts into science classes and this lesson connects science, math, and art.

No matter your subject area, Lesson Planet has teacher-curated resources designed to spark the interest of your students in the visual and performing arts.

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Value (Art)

For Teachers 3rd - 6th
Value is an important aspect of art to consider. It adds realism and mood to a work of art. This video shows various examples of value, as well as great descriptions.
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Twig Construction: Recycled Materials

For Teachers 1st - 6th
Construction projects of any kind require learners to use spacial reasoning, creative thinking, and critical analysis skills. They design and make a twig/leaf structure out of natural and recycled materials. This project would be great...
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Non-Edible Recipes (art recipes)

For Teachers Pre-K - 4th
Oh your eyes are going to pop when they see this long list of are recipes! Each of the 29 links redirect you to an art supply recipe that will help you make a number of art supplies. Doughs, paints, clay, glue, paste, and chalk are a...
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Art and Careers

For Teachers 9th - 12th
Students study and inquire what museum curators do and their responsibilities of collecting, displaying, researching, maintaining, and promoting their collections. They research an art museum and choose one work of art that is their...
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"Art History Kites"

For Teachers 9th - 12th
Here is a great art activity that can be connected to several different subjects. Kids get creative as they create kites that are inspired by a famous artist or period in art history. They begin the process by choosing their inspiration,...
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"Shadow Art"

For Teachers 9th - 12th
Now here is an art project I would totally enjoy. It includes the use of two very inexpensive materials, shadows and junk! The class uses collected junk and a light source to create a positive space image and its shadow. They will...
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Pop Art Clay Portraits

For Teachers 5th - 12th
Create the classic Andy Warhol mass-produced image using clay slabs. Explore the pop art movement using image transfer techniques. This project incorporates art history as well as multiple clay tools. The finished product is an...
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Art Journal

For Teachers K - 12th
Here's a prescription for creativity—keep a daily art journal. Words, images, shapes, objects, all can be used as prompts that exercise the creative imagination. Set aside a couple of moments each day for this engaging activity.
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Space (Art)

For Teachers 3rd - 6th
How do you describe space? The young artist in this video does a great job at discussing space and different techniques to portray space in art.
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Art Classification

For Students 3rd - 5th
Different types of art have embedded, visual clues that help define and classify them. Learners view seven pieces of art and then draw a line from the art piece its type. This is a great way to build visual literacy and classification...
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Paper Ring Art

For Teachers 1st - 3rd
A few bits of paper can really go a long way when it comes to art. Learners build motor skills and a creative voice as they shape and glue thin strips of paper, creating an original scene. 
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Pop Art Pins & Magnets

For Teachers 5th - 12th
Students examine cereal and snack boxes and then create magnets and/or pins using the Pop Art demonstrated in these pieces. This multi-level instructional activity emphasizes the differences between commercial art examples and fine art...
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Lesson: French Revolution and Visual Language of Power

For Teachers 9th - 12th
Take a look at the French Revolution and neo-classic art, then compare it to current social issues and contemporary art. Kids analyze several pieces painted by Jacques-Louis David in regard to style and subject then compare them to...
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Lesson: Michael Patterson-Carver: Politics and Art

For Teachers 9th - 12th
Michael Paterson-Carver creates art that expresses political concepts, allegory, and activism. Learners will examine several of his pieces and his perspective. Then they create an original piece that conveys a message.
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Drawing Portraits Using a Grid

For Teachers 5th - 8th
A well-developed art lesson is always great to have around. This lesson on portrait drawing includes a full procedure, modifications, background information on artist Chuck Close, recommended websites, and a few thoughts from the...
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Cityscapes

For Teachers K - 12th
A perfect resource for an art teacher of any grade. First, click on the resource's second tab, entitled "Activities," to find four unique grade-specific instructional activity all based on the theme of cityscapes.  Each activity utilizes...
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Start with a Circle...

For Students K - 12th
The Golden Ratio. The Divine Proportion. Yup. It's math and art blended into one colorful activity. Young artists combine colored tissue paper circles and parts of circles to create geometric patterns. As a bonus, kids get to figure out...
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Instrument and Visual Appreciation of Art

For Teachers 9th - 12th
There are a lot of great ideas to be found here. To better understand the connection between art and history, learners research several music and art pieces, then relate them to major social events. They study the lives and works...
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Animal Self-portrait Mosaics: A Visual Arts Elective

For Teachers 7th - 8th
Out-lined here is a two-week procedure that has the class creating ceramic animal tiles that are metaphorical representations of their own personalities. They discuss animal images found throughout history, what they mean, metaphor, and...
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Follow the Leader: Line in the Visual Arts

For Teachers 9th - 12th
Students explore line in painting and drawing and examine how it is defined in the visual arts. Recognizing line in the composition of a number of art works and how it affects these works of art is the focus of this lesson.
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African Ecology and Art

For Teachers 7th - 12th
Explore Samburu culture as students examine art work by many artists and compare and contrast their styles. They view Kenyan images and find Kenya on the map. Students identify conflict in the animal world and draw animals and record in...
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The American Wilderness? How 19th Century American Artists Viewed the Separation of Civilization and Nature

For Teachers 9th - 11th
The attitudes of European settlers toward the American wilderness, as reflected in art and literature, is the focus of this resource packet designed for teachers. Included in the unit overview you will find lists or paintings and works...
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Expressing Emotions through Art Lesson 3—Everybody Works Together

For Teachers K - 2nd
See how art can communicate the idea of working together with your class. They will view art and describe space, color, shape, and lines in art. Then they will overlap in their art to show a sense of space. In the end, they will be able...
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If Paintings Could Talk: Art and Language

For Teachers 6th - 8th
Middle schoolers learn about the artist Canaletto, play a vocabulary game, and create a landscape using collage technique. Background information on the artist is provided along with instructions for the game and vocabulary words to...