Pattern Play


  • SWBAT recognize line, shape (organic/geometric), color (elements of art), and pattern
  • SWBAT identify these elements in artworks (visual aids)
  • SWBAT utilize them to create a mixed media collage


  • Andrea Gill, Illusionary Flight, 1992  (pattern, line, shape, color)
  • David Huffman, Belly Button Window, 2006 (mixed media collage, color, shape, etc.)
  • Claire Falkenstein, Body Centered Cubic, 1960 (intersecting lines create shapes)
  • Claire Falkenstein, Untitled Surrealist Painting, 1945 (intersecting lines create shapes)
  • Paul Jenkins, Phenomena Intervening Mantle, 2006 (sections of color create shapes)
  • Wayne Thiebaud, Pies, Pies, Pies, 1961 (line, color, shape, pattern)
  • Wayne Thiebaud, River Intersection, 2010 (lines, colors create shapes, patterns)

Instructional Materials

  • Dry Erase Markers 
  • Image reproductions 
  • Books (Elements of Art themes)


Opening Discussion 

  • Discuss/identify line, shape, color, and pattern in visual aids. 
  • Discuss mixed media and collage.


  • Draw a continuous (swirly) line from one side of the cardstock paper to the other (make sure it loops and intersects itself in various areas and takes up the entire paper) to create your first line 
  • To make your second line, attach strips of tape (at least 3) that reach from one side of the paper to the other side (or adjacent side), overlapping the continuous line and intersecting to create new shapes/sections.
  • Fill/decorate the shapes/sections with various papers (cut and ripped) and drawn designs, focusing on creating patterns.

During the Work Period

  • Help one-on-one, giving explanations and demos as necessary.
  • Count and log number of students and number of adults served. .


All, some, or none of these can be done, depending on the class and the remaining time. 

  • Tell them that they’re going to move around the room and look at each other’s work. The pastel/watercolor paintings will stay on the table and they will be moving. There are two rules for this activity: no talking, no touching. It’s a time to look, not talk or touch. Ask them to stand and push their chairs in and stand behind their desk. Remind them of no talking and no touching. They can walk around the room and return to their seat when they feel like they’ve seen everything.
  • If they want to share:  Have them to look at their work and think about what colors they used. What determined their choice of design? Did they enjoy this type of artwork? 


  • Thank them for their work. Tell them to take their collages home and share them with their friends and family. They can use their drawings in the same way you used the images in the beginning to teach people about art. 
  • Explain family passes, if they’re getting them. Encourage them to visit the Crocker to see the artworks they saw today. 
  • If you have extra time, read them a book. This can be done at any time, depending on the class needs. 


  • Thick paper (cardstock)
  • construction paper (various colors)
  • tissue paper squares (various colors)
  • patterned/textured paper, sticker paper?
  • glue sticks
  • colored masking tape
  • stencils?
  • markers and/or pastels
  • scissors
  • Pencils
  • Wet Wipes
  • Cloth towel


90 minutes

Grade Level



  • Color
  • Female Artist


  • Collage


Mallorie Marsh

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