In this activity, students are encouraged to gather natural materials from their surrounding environment and use them to create works of art.
This activity is a great opportunity for students to be creative and to observe patterns in the natural world.
This is a great activity to encourage creativity and observation in students.
Students can use natural materials to make patterns based on colors, shapes, or textures.
Suggested materials for this activity include glue, putty or tape, crayons, construction paper, colorful thread, scissors, and a container for collecting natural materials.
Students will need access to the outdoors to collect natural materials for their artwork. This activity is somewhat weather-dependent because natural materials are best used for artwork when they are dry.
Before gathering materials, teachers could ask students to make a list of the plants, rocks, and other natural items they might expect to find. After gathering materials, students can look back at their lists to see how many items they found. Teachers can ask students to think about the following questions:
Why do we find some items (e.g. flowers, green leaves) only during certain times of the year?
Why do we find other items (e.g., rocks, sand, dirt) all year long?
Do you think someone who lives in a very cold climate will be able to find palm trees or tropical flowers growing in their community? Why?
Can you think about a plant that mostly grows in a dry/cold/hot/wet climate?
An optional extension for this activity involves teaching students how to press flowers or leaves.
Other similar resources include this crafting activity to make your own reusable bag or these instructions for six simple upcycling projects.
This activity will inspire students to create naturepiece and learn the arts as they interact with their natural environment. This is recommended for the classroom.
National Core Arts Standards
Visual Arts: Standard 1 - Generate and conceptualize artistic ideas and work.
VA:Cr1.1.1a Engage collaboratively in exploration and imaginative play with materials.
VA:Cr1.2.1a Use observation and investigation in preparation for making a work of art.
Visual Arts: Standard 10 - Synthesize and relate knowledge and personal experiences to make art.
VA:Cn10.1.3a Develop a work of art based on observations of surroundings.