Baltimore Curriculum Project Draft Lessons

Introductory Notes

These lessons generally follow the grade-by-grade topics in the Core Knowledge Sequence, but they have been developed independent of the Core Knowledge Foundation. While the Core Knowledge Foundation encourages the development and sharing of lessons based on the Core Knowledge Sequence, it does not endorse any one set of lesson plans as the best or only way that the knowledge in the Sequence should be taught.

You may feel free to download and distribute these lessons, but please note that they are currently in DRAFT form. At this time the draft lessons on this web site do NOT have accompanying graphics, such as maps or cut-out patterns. Graphics will be added to this site later.

In participating BCP schools, these lessons are used in conjunction with the Direct Instruction skills programs in reading, language, and math. If you use or adapt these lessons, keep in mind that they are meant to address content and the application of skills. You will need to use other materials to ensure that children master skills in reading, language, and math.

Kindergarten - Visual Arts - Lesson 7 - Line

Identify different kinds of lines in art and nature.
Use continuous, curved line to create a drawing.

Slide of Matisse's drawing The Swan
Piece of newsprint and pencil or black marker for each child


Tell the children you are going to draw some lines on the chalkboard for them. There will be four different kinds of lines: wavy, curved, zigzag, and straight. Say: Watch carefully as I draw these different kinds of lines. When I am finished, you will tell me which are the wavy lines, which are the zigzag lines, which are the straight lines, and which are the curved lines. Quickly draw the four kinds of lines on the board. The four groups may look something like:

zigzag straight curved wavy

When you have helped the children to identify the four kinds of lines and discussed the most obvious differences between them, tell them that next you want them to identify some of each kind of lines in your classroom. As they tell you what they observe, write each thing under the correct column on the chalkboard. The most obvious will be straight lines in vertical corners of the walls, horizontal line of the floor, door, and window, etc. If they have trouble, have them imagine being in other places, such as the seashore (wavy lines of breakers in the ocean, boats bobbing at anchor), a city street (spiral or wavy line of water going down a drain) outside in a field (zigzag line of lightning in the sky, curved lines of clouds).

If they haven't already looked at themselves or each other, suggest that they do now. Start with the round lines of their faces. Some children may have wavy hair; others, kinky or zigzag lines in their hair. Have them each look at the palms of their hands. Ask: What kinds of lines do you see on your palms? (curved).

See whether you can get them to reach the conclusion that there are more wavy and curved lines in nature than in man-made objects; more straight lines (telephone poles, arrows, vertical and horizontal lines) in man-made objects than in nature.

Next, show them the Matisse slide of The Swan. Tell the children that this art work was made by a man named Henri Matisse who lived on the continent of Europe. (Have someone point out Europe.)

Ask: What do you see in this art work? (a swan, a bird)

What can you tell me about the colors? (not many, just one other than the color of the paper)


Kindergarten - Visual Arts - Lesson 7 - Line

What about the lines? Do you think they are important to Matisse? Which of the four kinds of lines we talked about today did Matisse use mostly? (curved, wavy)

Do you think this swan is weak or strong? Why?

Remind the children about the conclusion you reached that living things tend to have more curved than straight lines; non-living, more straight lines. Ask whether the swan is living or non-living. Tell them that animals and people are a part of nature.

Recommended Book

Hoban, Tana. Spirals, Curves, Fanshapes and Lines. New York: Greenwillow Books, 1992.

Photographs help reinforce concepts of spirals, curves, fanshapes, and lines.


Give each child a piece of paper and either a broad, soft pencil for drawing or a black marker. Ask: When you look at the paper, what kind of lines do you see? (straight)

Say: Each of you place flat on the paper the palm of the hand you don't use to draw or write. Next, take the pencil or marker, and draw around the outside of your hand with fingers slightly spread. Try to do it in one long, curved line without lifting your marker at all.

Have the children look at what they have drawn on the paper. Let them add any kinds of lines they wish to the drawing--straight, zigzag, diagonal, or curved, to create a design that they can give a title for you to write down.

If time permits, have the children take a fresh piece of paper and with the same marker or pencil, make a drawing or design without lifting the marker off the paper at all. Anyone who wishes could look at something specific as they draw, so they only feel what is happening on the paper; otherwise, they may look at their papers as they draw and create from their imaginations or from something they can see. The important thing is not to lift the pencil or marker all the while they are drawing and to do it with some freedom, not too much deliberation. Discuss the drawings the children have made, having each child tell which process he or she used and what they had in mind.


Kindergarten - Lesson 8 - Line and Pattern


Review warm and cool colors.

Identify different kinds of lines in a colorful painting by Matisse.

Learn that repeating lines create patterns.


Slide of Matisse's drawing The Swan

Slide of Matisse's painting The Purple Robe

One large, continuous strip of white shelf paper to stretch on wall for group drawing


Shirts or paper with plaid, striped, polka dot patterns; wrapping paper with patterns to use as examples


Ask: Who remembers the name of the picture we saw in the last lesson? (The Swan) Show the children the slide of the swan to remind them of what it looked like. Then ask: Who remembers the name of the artist? (Matisse) Does anyone remember what we talked about with this drawing? (Lines--curved, zigzag, wavy, and straight)

Next show the slide of The Purple Robe. Ask: Would you believe that this painting was done by the same artist? (probably not) What's so different about this? (It's a painting, not a drawing; it's filled with many different colors; it's very bright. Any other responses that indicate good observation are acceptable.)

This painting provides a good opportunity to review briefly what the children learned about colors in September. Ask: Do you think Matisse uses warm colors or cool colors in this painting? (both)

Have the children take turns telling where Matisse used warm and where cool colors. Next have the children tell you what else they see in the picture (flowers, woman, robe, wallpaper, tile floor, rug, table, couch, table, vase, anything else they notice).

Ask: Does that seem like a lot of different colors and a lot of different things to have in

one painting? (yes) Do you think it makes the painting seem lively or calm?

Next, ask the children to tell you what kinds and colors of lines they see in the background of the painting and what colors they are (straight, thick red lines on a gold background, wavy white lines on a gray background). Tell the children that when the same kind of line is repeated many times, that creates something we call a pattern. Say: Matisse's patterns depend on both color and line in this painting.

Ask the children next where else they see patterns, and then to describe what each one looks like. (If you have a pointer or yardstick, the children can point to the pattern they describe even if they aren't sure precisely what to call the object that is patterned.) Be sure they include the pattern on the woman's robe and blouse, on the vase, on the floor and on the rug, on the table, and on the couch. In each case, try to have the child identify both the color and the particular kind of line that Matisse uses to create the pattern.

To continue this kind of observation, you could ask: What is the difference between the red stripes on the wall and the white stripes on the woman's robe? (Red stripes are thick and


Kindergarten - Lesson 8 - Line and Pattern

straight; white stripes are thinner and not quite straight.) What do you notice about the pattern

on the table and the pattern on the woman's skirt? (They are nearly the same, with the same kinds of lines, but one is black and the other is white--almost like a negative and positive in a snapshot.

Finally, ask a few children to tell which is their favorite pattern in the painting and why.

Group Activity

Attach the continuous piece of paper to a wall so that the children can comfortably reach it. Have several sets of crayons available. Tell the children that together you will all create a

mural of patterns. Start by taking a color and making a pattern of repeated circles or lines. Direct the first child to add to the pattern by using a different color or modifying the existing pattern in some way. (Cross lines, encircle solid circles of one color with circles of another color, etc.) When one section of the paper is covered start another. Be sure that you are very specific in asking each child to do something quite specific as to both color, line, and shape (i.e. a solid circle vs. an outline circle).

Example of continuous strip of changing patterns from publication of Baltimore Museum of Art


Kindergarten - Art/Craft - December


Listen to and enjoy the poem I Do Not Mind You, Winter Wind by Jack Prelutsky.

Create a winter scene using the crayon resist technique.

Experiment with color and paint.


Dark blue construction paper (8 x 11) one per student


White tempra paint

Paint brushes

Small containers to hold paint mixture



Say: Today I would like to read to you a poem about winter. Let's think about winter weather. Ask: Who can use some words to describe winter weather? (cold, snowy, freezing)

Ask: What are some fun activities we can do only during the winter time? (sledding, build a snowman, ice skate)

Say: Listen carefully to this poem. See if you agree with what the poet has to say about winter wind. Read:

I Do Not Mind You, Winter Wind

by Jack Prelutsky

I do not mind you, Winter Wind

when you come whirling by,

to tickle me with snowflakes

drifting softly from the sky.

I do not even mind you

when you nibble at my skin,

scrambling over all of me

attempting to get in.

But when you bowl me over

and I land on my behind,

then I must tell you, Winter Wind,

I mind . . . I really mind!

Say: Do you agree with the poet? (Allow children to respond to the poem.)

Say: Now we are going to make a winter scene. Think about some of the activities we listed that are fun to do in the winter time. Think about how the snow falls and makes everything white. Think about how there are no flowers and no green grass in the winter time. Think about how the trees look without their leaves.


Kindergarten - Art/Craft - December

Distribute one piece of dark blue construction paper to each student. Tell the children to use their crayons and color a winter picture showing one of their favorite winter activities. The

children must press very firmly with the crayons, putting as much wax on the paper as possible. Encourage the children to add a horizontal line across the paper to distinguish the ground from the sky. Remind them that there should be no green grass, no flowers, and no leaves on the trees.

While children are coloring, prepare the paint wash by mixing white tempra paint and water (equal portions) in a small plastic container. When children have finished coloring their papers, they will wash the paint mix over the paper using long horizontal strokes. This works best when large paint brushes are used. The paint mix should cover the entire paper. It will not stick to the areas that have been colored heavily. Place the finished paper on newspaper to dry.

It is important that the children color firmly in order to achieve the desired effect.