Make your own free website on
University of California "100 Art Ideas Workshop"
TEACHERS-WHAT KINDS OF PROJECTS HAVE YOU CREATED USING A PLASTIC BOTTLE? Post your ideas on the guestbook or send them to Art Teacher on the Net at


Amanda from the University in Calgary writes. . .Hello, I am an
art education student just about to enter my third year in a 
Canadian University.  I was very happy to come across your site.  
It is very informative and helpful.  My question to you or anyone who 
has any thoughts on the topic is:
Does anyone have any ideas about integrating art with any of the four
core subjects at the secondary level.  If anyone has any ideas I
would be grateful.

Thank you for a very important and popular question.  Many schools
are facing budget cuts in arts curriculum and one of the ways to offset
this challenge is by incorporating art into the basic lesson plans 
and core subjects.  Art easily lends itself to cross curriculums, 
combining art with critical thinking skills, writing, and language
arts, mathematics, science, anatomy, chemistry, psychology, religion,
philosophy, engineering and on and on.

I think that it is a good idea to first go to the Renaissance
artist and engineer Leonardo da Vinci and study the intregal
relationships of art and science.  He was considered to be one 
of the first medical illustrators, his mechanical and engineering
designs were so advanced that they only needed fuel to run etc.
A good link to Leonardo da Vinci and his art and his scientific
ventures can be found on the link below.

Science Based Cross Curriculum Project Ideas

Exercise #1

1.  Bring the outdoors in and let students observe first hand what
nature looks like.

2.  Ask them to observe and draw the items.

3.  Discourage them from preconceived schematic drawings and ask
them to really look and examine the fruits, vegetable, flowers, 
drftwood, bark, rocks, live animals, fossils and skeletons of
animal, seashells and other natural materials.

4.  Take photographs of the items.

5.  Turn the photograph upside down and ask the students to draw
the natural subject matter.

6.  Go on a field trip to a local aquarium, zoo, tide pool or
other natural wonder and ask students to make sketches of the
natural subject matter found there.

7.  Ask students to plant and observe a seedling become a plant,
vegetable, or flower.  Use a transparent container.  Students should document through drawing
the stages of growth and make a scientific illustration of the 
growth history.
Project #2

Issues of ecological concern and conservation can be addressed through
drawing, painting, sculpture, video, (all art mediums).

1.  Ask students to research the evidence that there has been an erosion
of plants and that some 250,000 of today's current species of plants
could be extinct by the early 21st century.  Ask them to draw and
catalog the species of plants and animals that are currently in 

2.  Create an original stamp design of an endangered species, use
original endangered postal stamps as inspiration.  Ask the post office
if they can refer you to research materials or educational packets
to help in this project.

Chemistry and the Arts Project #3

1.  Ask students to create the volcano outlined on the Art of the
World-Hawaii page on this site.  You will find it easily in the 
index of projects.

2.  Make an appointment with your local museum's conservator and ask
for materials experts restore paintings, tapestries, etc.  Take a 
field trip to the museum to see the actual process.  Write the
Metropolitan Museum in New York or visit their website (link below)
and ask them to send you materials about conservation, internships
in the conservation department of the museum, and the requirements
for people who choose restoring and art conservationship as a
career, ( a field requiring lots of science and chemistry).

3.  Use mirrors, microscopes, magnifiers, black lights etc. to
illustrate concepts of light and color theories and other scientific
concepts.  Students can create very interesting abstract paintings
by painting or drawing images discovered in microscope experiments.
Or why not create a new microdesign fabric!  Mirrors can be used
to illustrate concepts and to create self-portraits (students 
can study proportion and observe placement of facial features
through portrait drawing exercises). Concepts of broken and
reflected light can be illustrated through prism exercises
that utilize acrylic and are brilliantly outlined in the work
of artists outlined in the links below under "Light Sculpture."
Create a kaleidoscope -(anyone have a good design for a kalediscope)? 
4.  Create 3D glasses. Watch for this soon to be Free Project Sheet
idea of the Week.
5.  Illustrate concepts of light by creating a Seurat painting.
See links below.
6.  There are works of art that actual create a psysiological sensation-
they pull at the optical nerve-kinetic art is one such style.  Ask
students to create a kinetic piece after viewing the links below.

*A special note*
Many kids are homeschooled today. Art Teacher on the Net has some great
ideas about how to enjoy art while discovering other core curriculum
topics. For example, you could go to a museum and ask about how
chemistry is used to restore works of art. What is the title of the
professional who restores paintings?

Answer:  conservator

Social Science and Political Science Cross Curriculum Projects #4 1. Offer a Craft Day to a local Senior Center, Children's Organization or other facility that would provide from art volunteers. Ask students to research projects that would be appropriate to age and skill levels. Students will gain satisfaction in putting smiles on faces through crafts. Art & Recreation leaders of these facilities should outline beforehand the challenges involved and appropriateness of the projects. Everyone will benefit from this art volunteerism. 2. Artists have often been political motivators. Thomas Moran, an American Landscape painter and member of the Hudson River School was just one of the artist who helped to get some of our greatest land preserved by taking his paintings to Congress and showing them the beauty of the landscape and the necessity to preserve it. He succeeded and even sold a painting to Congress. Ask students to look at the social problems around them. How could they convince Congress through the visual mediums photography, painting, video etc. to look and address the problem. A report on Thomas Moran would also be a good assignment to illustrate citizen involvement, and the American system of law making etc. 3. Field Trips to fire stations, natural history museums, art museums, major corporations etc. provide inspiration for collages, sketch book activities, and other art project ideas. 4. Topics and art projects that provide lots of interest are the following: a. Is Graphetti Art? See the Harring Link below. b. Funding for the Arts. c. Censorship in the Arts. d. Product Development. e. Costume and Set Design. f. The Impact of Television and Films. 5. Visit a local television station and then ask students to create their own television script and storyboard. Writing, Critical Thinking, and the Language Arts Cross Curriculum Project #5. 1. Create a class or school newspaper and write art and film critiques. 2. Write the Smithsonian Museum and ask them for their teachers packet. There are excellent writing exercises and teach critical thinking skills. 3. Visit the Writing About Art Workshop by clicking the link below. History and Cross Curriculum Education Project #6 1. Research the costumes of various period noting their political, social, historical, religious, cultural significance. Create an evolution of costume design through paper doll cut out figures and dress the dolls in the appropriate paper styles. 2. Study various cultures of the World and create art projects that correspond to the various countries. Create an entire unit surrounding the journey to that particular part of the world. Turn the classroom into a little "Italy," "Africa," "France," etc. Find pen-pals from the area of the world to write to, and of course, you will find lots of ideas for traveling through the art world of these countries on this site. Anatomy and the Arts Project #7 1. Study and make sketches of bones and muscles. 2. Transfer sketches into life-size drawing and attach the skeleton with the labeled bones and muscles "at the joints," with brads. 3. Students will love this walk around specimen and it makes a great learning tool. Math and Business and the Arts Project #8 1. Purchase inexensive art prints and have an art auction. Look for an upcoming Project Sheet of the Week which will give the rules and art "money" used to purchase art items. 2. Open a student gallery at your school. Your students will learn lots of business ideas as they go through the actual hands on process of setting up an art space. You will need an art manager, resgistrar, tour guides, art host, events writer, and fund raising activities such as art sales of student work. Engineering and the Arts Project #9 1. Take a field trip to a car manufacturing plant and then as a follow up project ask students to create a car of the future. What might the problems of a designer be in the future? What fuel will be used? Will a place for cars be a problem? Will "cars" fly? Ask students to work in small groups. Teacher on the Net (c) l997 Under Construction (More Ideas to Follow)


You will find the Guestbook on this page.
Help fellow teachers with ideas or post your own questions here.
Leonardo da Vinci Site (You Could Spend a Day Here)
The Smithsonian (Do I Need to Say More :)
Is Graphetti Art?
HOMEPAGE Lots of Ideas Here


else with ideas for inexpensive art resources please contribute, thanks!

inexpensive prints and teacher discounts.

CONTACT MAJOR MUSEUM BOOKSTORES.  Ask for the museum store catalog
or speak to the educational curators.  There are teacher packets
available for free or at discounted costs.

THE NATIONAL GALLERY OF ART has a free art print and slide loan
service to teachers. Contact them at National Gallery of Art,
Educational Curator, at

NEW YORK GRAPHIC SOCIETY 140 Greenwich Ave. Greenwich, CT  06830

For Slides . . .

American Color Slide Library, 222 West 23rd St. New York NY  10011

Don't overlook the many resources on the internet that can 
be shown or studied in class or the library.  Ask the 
museum website if you can print the works shown on their site.