Teachingartonthecheap's Blog

Second Grade: Giant Picture Postcards

Posted on: March 28, 2010

Creative Reuse Lesson Plan         Second grade: Letter Writing

Written by Keri Piehl for SCRAP /Whitman ES 2009-10

Giant Postcards

Cost per student: $.15, slightly more if you factor in the laminating

Materials: water color paints, 1 inch masking tape, white or light cardstock or heavy paper, water dishes, water, paint brushes, newspaper, clean wet rags, chalk pastels, backer paper to look like non-picture side of postcard, lots of postcards for examples, laminating machine or spray fix

Students will use a variety of techniques to create a landscape reminiscent of a postcard.

Elements of art: space, value, color

Vocabulary: Postcard, landscape, wash, blend

1. Begin by sharing postcards with the students; I picked out all the traditional looking landscape cards from my collection. We discussed the various subjects and talked about how cities and towns choose their nicest views to put on a postcard, not a trashed lot, roadkill or dirty alley. Many of the postcards had featured skies with vibrant colors around dawn or dusk and we noticed how the colors blended together to form a background for the photographer’s subject.

2. To begin, have the students tape down their paper on all four edges- just tape it right to the table with masking tape. It is important that the tape be ½ on the edge of the paper, ½ on the table. I just ripped off the tape and had the kids work on helping each other prepare their workspace.

3. Using our widest paint brushes, I showed the kids how to create a wash of color that would become the sky and background of their picture postcard. Use long, graceful brushstrokes, overlapping to blend the colors. Some kids made theirs look more like gradient lines and some just had various amorphous shapes of colors; both worked.

4. Students gently peeled the tape off and left them to dry; the tape left a nice clean border around the edge. This lesson took us 2 weeks, but you could finish them the next day depending on what kind of class you are teaching.

5. We reviewed some postcard examples and thought of some good subjects. After putting down a sheet of newspaper under each child’s water-colored background, they used chalk pastels to create a vibrant landscape focusing on natural subjects like trees and waterways, or man made structures.

6.When they finished, I carefully glued on a piece of paper  on the back of their art that looked like a postcard, with lines for the address, an outline for where you would place the stamp, etc. I then laminated the artwork, sealing the two pieces together and making a postcard they could practice filling out over and over again with a wet or dry erase marker.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


  • None
%d bloggers like this: