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Student Projects

Creativity Takes Courage

Authors: Diane Hawke, Linda Salamanca , Jen Schultz

Grade: Kindergarten

Subject: Art

How does learning about art impact how we see the world?

  • Why is art important?
  • How are artists resilient?
  • How does art speak to you?
  • What types of medium do artists use?
  • What is the purpose of an art museum?

In this project, kindergartners explored eight different artists and their work. The students examined not only individual artist’s pieces and style, but also made parallels to various artists’ lives and techniques. They learned to express their ideas and opinions about the artists and types of art they enjoyed. Through various field experiences and art projects, students discovered learning through mistakes and building grit. After examining each artist, the students created a piece of art in his/her style. For the final product, students chose which artist he/she connected most with, then created a self- portrait in that style and wrote a reflection piece about why they chose that artist.

  • Piece of art in the style of each great artist
  • Self portrait in the style of the artist of their choice
  • Writing piece on why they chose that style
  • Pocket facial feature guide

Informational writing
Opinion writing

Reading Informational Text:
Ask and answer questions about different artists/styles
Compare and contrast artist’s styles

Social Emotional:
Perspective taking
Learning from mistakes

Geometry – finding shapes in the real world (art)
Composing and decomposing shapes to create art

Fine Motor Skills:

When deciding whether or not this project was kindergarten-friendly, the teachers visited the San Diego Museum of Art. While there, we shared our project idea with a museum docent. Upon hearing the scope and sequence of the project, she was excited by the idea of kindergarteners being exposed to museums and art as the museum had not worked with primary students before. This was a driving force to move forward with this project.


This project went beyond what we expected of the students. It conjured up questions about how art affects you, the connections one can make individually to an artist, and that there are multiple perspectives around art. The students were excited to learn that a local artist’s sculptures were around San Diego and took their families to see many of them. The scope of the project gave students the knowledge, skills and language to reflect on art beyond what was explored in the classroom. One family shared that their child was able to have an in-depth conversation with a local artist they met. The student was confident in her knowledge of art and reflective in learning about the artist’s work.

“Art is important because it speaks to different people in different ways” -Bellamy

“Art speaks to me because it moves me to different places and times.” -Sophia

“Even when artists feel like giving up they keep painting.” – Olivia

“An art museum is so people can look at different types of art and make opinions if they like it or not. They can also look at art and see different kinds.” -Crosby

“Art speaks to me by how it looks. A Vincent Van Gogh painting speaks to me.” -Julian