Wednesday, December 2, 2015

the kinders are tearing it up!

This week the kinders are continuing to work with shape. So far this year, they had created drawings. With this lesson, the little ones are cutting and tearing paper to make the shapes in their artwork.
I'm using an piece by Japanese illustrator Kaori Kumura as the focus image for the lesson.

We look quietly at the image for a minute and think about what we see in the picture- this seems like eternity for the kids as many immediately raise their hands to share. I ask them to put their hands down, so everyone can focus. As they share what they see with me, I write the items on the board. When we are done I ask them if we are looking at an inside place or outside place. We then talk about how this image is an example of a landscape.

The first step is to tear some cloud shapes. I model how to hold the white paper vertically and to push with one hand and pull with the other. We try to tear the paper into 2 parts and then tear it into some smaller parts. I encourage the kids to keep at least one big cloud. Students place about 6 of their torn pieces on their sky paper for their clouds. 

Then comes the glue! There are never any issues when kinders glue, especially for the first time;) 

I show them how to keep the cloud pieces on the bigger paper when gluing and then flipping the pieces over and pressing them in place. We want to keep the tables clean for the kids that come in after, so we always use the background paper as a placemat when we glue.

We then move on to our first mountain and our first cutting step. We draw a crooked line on a 6x6 square and cut along the line. I model finger position in the scissors, cutting away from your body, and all that good stuff. Students decide whether they will use both pieces of the square or only one and glue it in a corner. Before gluing, we look at how the shape fits nicely into a corner of their bigger sheet.

 We move on to our middle mountains and draw a stretched out zig zag to cut along. Students choose one half of that sheet and glue it in place. The paper for this step is 4.5x9".

 The final step our the mountains or hills in the front. We draw a very wide, crooked "v" shape across a sheet of paper that is 3x9". Students may use the cut corners of this piece or they may use the inside of the "v" shape.

I have to say that the kids have done such an impressive job cutting out their shapes. The kinder teachers have got them off to a great start!

To wrap things up, if we have time, we build a sentence about the lesson together and write it out on a sentence strip.


  1. These look great! Thanks for sharing your steps.

  2. Yes, thanks for the steps. Love these and will be trying it out!

  3. I'd forgotten about it until now, but I used to do, with my 2nd or 3rd graders, a similar project, but we tore EVERYTHING. We tore a few colors directly from one side to another, so that we could use the pieces to create layers of mountains and hills. Then, once our layered landscapes were in place, with at least two layers of mountains and a third layer for foreground, they used each other's scrap 1/2's of paper, and scissors if they wanted to, to create houses of different sizes, road, trees, and more. It was a great introduction to perspective. But I never thought of using the process as early as kindergarten! Reading your post, I don't know why not!