Fantastic Origami Inspired Cyclops Eye


Halloween is around the corner and with the students all excited about costumes, candy and all things creepy, it can be tough for art teachers to not fall victim to doing the typical seasonal activities. My rule of thumb for holidays is that whatever I do, it has to have an instructional purpose and be different.

I found this lesson (with easy instructions) when I hosted an after school activity last year. This is the perfect time to share it with you so that you can adapt it to your heart’s content. What do you get when you challenge your students to make a cyclop eye by folding paper, origami style? An instant winner that will engage your students in a lot of creepy fun!

I suggest you practice making one for yourself a couple of times to get the hang of it. You basically make all the folds first, work on the eyeball, fold everything and finally work on the eyelid.

Let your students make several if there is time however this lesson took 45 minutes to do with a group of students from grades 1-5. What would a witch eye look like? A zombie? An animal? See all the possible variations on this?



Once you have made the folds, and you have guided the students to draw and outline their eyeball, it’s up to the student to create the eye details however they like. Veins, bloodshot eyes, the sky’s the limit. We used oil pastels because I love how vibrant the colors are but feel free to try water color, pencils, or whatever you like using in class.



The final part is to fold everything closed and work on the eyelid. Again, your students should have the freedom to make the eyelid however they like. How about adding strips of curled paper for eyelashes to give it that realism? Adding texture?

This lesson was a hit with my group of kids and know your students will feel the same. I would love to hear back and see how your Cyclop eye turned out and the variations your students came up with. Feel free to share over at the Art lessons For Kids Facebook page.

Happy Halloween lovely readers!


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Papier Mache Greek Vases in Grade Seven

scratch art 2

This gallery contains 16 photos.

This has got to be one of my favorite papier mache projects ever! It took a while to complete but was so worth it. Besides, I love long projects and think it’s a great opportunity for kids to slow down … Continue reading

Recycled Paper Weaving in Grade Two

What happens when the copy lady in your school accidently makes too many copies?  You  recycle the paper  into wonderful paper weaving creations of course! I saw this idea in an Arts and Activities magazine many years ago and thought it would be a perfect lesson to try with my second graders.  As I have mentioned before, I pretty much save EVERYTHING! You never know what wonderful art project could be in store with your recycled items.

1. Find some old cardboard and cut them up into 9×12 pieces for each student. Get all your recycled paper (it could be colored paper too!)  and give  8-10 pieces to each student.

2. Have each student  twist each piece of paper until they have 8-10  ‘logs‘. Make sure they start twisting  from the longer side of the paper so the logs will be long.

3. Have the students  glue down the ends of their twisted paper onto the cardboard. These should be glued in a VERTICAL manner as they will be the warp. Use white glue and have the students count to 20 on each end to make sure it sticks down.

4. Put your kiddos into small groups and give each group a  different color as you will be rotating the paint throughout the lesson. They should begin by painting the cardboard base and under the paper logs. Switch the colors around between groups and let the kids paint each log with lines, stripes, dots, etc. They will come up with creative ways to paint. Just make sure they don’t paint the bottom of the logs as these will STICK to the cardboard and you don’t want this to happen.


Next lesson, give out the rest of the log pieces and explain they need to go under, over and weave their paper. Some logs will come loose and this is ok. Have the kids finish weaving and then glue the end back down. Give out some more paint and let the kids finish their creations. Try this lesson with Grade ones and even grade three. They could even weave in other recycled material such as thick yarn, corrugated pieces of paper, etc.


These look pretty cool huh?





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Wooden Scrap Art in Grade One

I found a box full of different sized wooden pieces and let my grade ones go wild! They all picked out between 10-20 pieces and played around with their composition and planning.

They painted a piece of cardboard in either white or black to serve as the background for their shape collage and the students painted all of their wooden pieces  with a solid color. When these were dry, they added designs and details with oil pastels– 2-3 colors per shape.

Finally they glued their pieces. Some kept to the original idea they had when the pieces were not painted and others went with a whole different look and feel.

I loved the plain collage and the colored one. As a variation they could be painted in warm or cool colors, complimentary colors, etc. Lovely don’t you think?

A Sneek Peek in Grade One!

Here’s a little something I am working on with Grade One’s. I have started my school wide 3D sculpture unit so that’s what you’ll be seeing on my blog from now on.

Grade one is have a blast and so am I! It’s amazing what you can do with a bit of imagination. I found this box of assorted wooden shapes that no one claimed and Louise Evelson came to mind but with a colorful twist! More to come on this…

Assorted wooden pieces come to life!

Assorted wooden pieces come to life!