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Autumn Scratchings

Make a scratch-out picture with paint over crayon to show some signs of the season.

  • Grade 3
    Grade 4
    Grade 5
  • Multiple Lesson Periods
  • Directions

    1. Discuss the signs of changing seasons with students. How do we know it is fall? What symbols remind us of autumn? How do seasonal changes differ in temperate and tropical climates?
    2. Students rub heavy patches of traditional fall colors on white construction paper using Crayola Crayons. Fill the whole sheet with vibrant colors.
    3. Have students cover their work area with recycled newspaper. Paint over the entire crayon design with black Crayola Tempera Paint using a Crayola Paint Brush, color the entire sheet. Dry.
    4. Using plastic dinnerware as an etching tool, students scratch pictures in the paint. Include trees, leaves, pumpkins, gourds, acorns, nuts, berries, fruits, or vegetables.
  • Standards

    LA: Read with sufficient accuracy and fluency to support comprehension.

    LA: Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative language such as metaphors and similes.

    LA: Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development and organization are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.

    MATH: Form ordered pairs and graph the ordered pairs on a coordinate plane.

    SCI: Ask questions about the natural and human-built worlds.

    SCI: Engage in a critical reading of primary literature of science, appropriate to grade level, and discuss hypotheses and conclusions.

    SS: Examine the interaction of human beings and their physical environment.

    VA: Use visual structures of art to communicate ideas.

    VA: Select and use subject matter, symbols, and ideas to communicate meaning.

  • Adaptations

    This activity can be introduced with Ellen Robena Field's poem A Fall Song. Students can have this read to them or read it independently. Have students identify the descriptive language found in the poem. Students can use this introduction as a springboard into identifying types of leaves and trees. Once students have created their projects they can write a poem that reflects autumn and their personal projects.

    Students research holidays and special observances that occur during the autumn months. Students can write a summary of their research and post it with their artwork.

    Students place a pressed leaf on the Coordinate Plane and determine ordered pairs that correspond with the points of their leaves. (Grades 3 and 4 use Quadrant I only; Grade 5 can use Quadrants I-IV.) Sketch the leaf and color it using Crayola Colored Pencils. Write directions for someone to use to duplicate your Coordinate Plane leaf, including ordered pairs needed. Have another student follow your directions.


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  • Creativity.
  • Capacity.
  • Collaboration.
  • Change.
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