# Symmetry

Discussion in 'Art Teachers' started by Crzy_ArtTeacher, Apr 13, 2009.

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Apr 13, 2009

Symmetry and art, it goes hand in hand. Well as a school we're focusing on using more vocab and really integrating those math concepts into every lesson. I'm looking to find some really good symmetry lessons for every grade level, but specifically at the moment for the lower grades.

I think I'm going to start with blotto butterflies with my first graders. Anyone else have some lessons based on symmetry they'd like to share? It'd be much appreciated!

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Apr 13, 2009

Try some simple origami. There are diagrams all over the Internet, and I'd guarantee you can find some things for first graders to fold!

4. ### SamothraceCohort

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Apr 13, 2009

Oooh! I did symmetrical bugs with my 3rd graders, easily could work for 2nd.

I cut a bunch of 6x6 squares in a variety of colors. They each need three squares, in different colors. We folded each in half to cut out a new symmetrical shape. I told them to make them interesting..no circles..no squares. Then we decorated each part by itself with symmetrical designs, I had them use construction paper crayons. We started by picking which would be the face and drew the eyes on..of course, being symmetrical.

After all parts were done, we glued them together to make a giant 3 part bug. We made the 6 legs with an accordian fold. To make sure the folds stay springy...we folded the 1x6 paper in half, turned it like a tent and brought each side up to the top fold (hope that makes sense..it controls the numbers of folds they get) If you want to go crazy you can have them symmetrically decorate the legs..and we glue them on symmetrically.

They are SUPER fun when you hang them in the hallway by the bottom of their feet, they kind of pop up off the wall.

For K, could you do symmetrical shape collages, do the folded in half paper bit and cut out some fun shapes.

5. ### SecurisCohort

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Apr 13, 2009

I haven't attempted to do radial symmetry with groups younger than 3rd but here's what I have done.

3-6, I teach them how to make graphite transfers and symmetrical drawings using a fold technique. Then I have them draw a simple symmetrical drawing in a pre-sized pie shape and transfer that to an appropriate sized circle (6 times around). Color as desired, pencils, paints, crayons.

I also have this printing activity that could be altered to almost any conceptual objective. I use camper sealant foam strips to make homemade stamps in a variety of shapes. Then using water-color markers, we stamp until we have our mono print. Add lines with markers or color pencils for added variety of line quality.

You could get them to make symmetrical stamp plates or radial stamp plates and go from there.

There's the Aztec calender, they could draw and embellish their own calender based on what they see.

Airplanes are symmetrical, and every child I've ever ran across likes a good airplane. However, this might get them into trouble in other classed due to them making airplanes when they should be learning double digit multiplication.

There's also the Golden Mean and it's relation to nature as as well as extensive use in Greek culture to measure just about everything. It was considered the aesthetic of perfection.

Drawing faces. Make a copy with half a face and have them draw the other half.

I did a recognition activity where I had 3rd and 4th graders identify Asymmetry, Symmetry, Approximate Symmetry, and Radial Symmetry in selected artworks. It became a game and to stipulate, they had to defend their answer because sometimes there was more than one answer.

6. ### ArtTeacherKRookie

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Apr 14, 2009

I just finished a symmetry lesson with 1st, 2nd, and 3rd (they've gotten so little art instruction that I'm currently chunking to catch kids up to where the curriculum says they should be).

I introduced everyone to symmetry by having them fold paper in half, draw an image on one side and then used a spoon to "print" the image onto the other. So if you made a flower in grass with 2 clouds, you ended up with a large picture of 2 flowers in grass with 4 clouds when you unfolded the paper. For some kids, they put the oil pastel on heavy enough that they only needed to do it once, some had to trace over their images to match the right value.

I've just done a lesson with my 2nd grade where they made masks out of construction paper by folding it and cutting on a shape so that it was symmetrical on both sides. Then they added designs with other colors of construction paper and oil pastel details, keeping it symmetrical the whole time. Our last step was to add watercolor to create a resist to make the designs more interesting (this took about 2 1/2 periods, we had testing in the middle of the project). One thing I wish I had done more of was reminding them once again on the last day that they wanted to keep their masks symmetrical. I mentioned it, but didn't stress it enough and some of them lost their symmetry by getting too excited with the watercolors. I did have a lot of kids come up and tell me that it was their favorite art project and they really got a kick of how I demonstrated how oil and water don't mix by putting oil in a clear container and adding water. In fact, this project went so well that I chose the last day of it (tomorrow for one class) to be my last observation of the year.

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