Relationships in Art

PYP unit 1:Who we are (Relationships)


Central Idea: Understanding yourself is the foundation for building and nurturing strong relationships.

Age group: Grade 4 (9-10 year olds)

Media: painting, drawing/sketching,  collage

Elements of Art: line, shape, colour, space

Teaching concepts through art:

*Perspective: Students were given a wide range of pictures which showed different kinds of perspective and were asked to sort the images into different a groups.


*Reflection: Students sorted different pictures which showed literal reflection and as well as pictures which showed personal reflection.


*Connection: Grade 4 students were asked to talk about and draw pictures which showed their connection to art.They were also asked to explore how art is connected in our school, in their homes and around the world.


Making personal connections to art by completing a Gallery Walk.

A Gallery Walk is when I put up pictures (or real artworks) around the school or in a room, in essence I am setting up a temporary gallery space.This allows students to view different artworks and I find that they take it more ‘seriously’ and enjoy the change of venue.

They were asked to look critically at a set of images which all depicted different relationships. 

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To enhance learning I usually use the visual thinking strategy, I see, I think, I wonder either in written form or verbally.

Diamond Ranking:

I often use this strategy to get students to think more deeply when looking at and analysing artworks.

Students were given 9 images, all of which expressed completely different political or social messages.By working with their friends, students were able to rank which image they found to show the most powerful relationship to the least powerful and explained their understanding verbally.

This enabled students to realise that important messages can be delivered through art.


Deeper Understanding by studying a well known artist:

Case Study: Frids Kahlo

Students also looked closely at the Mexican artist Frida Kahlo whose work spoke loudly in the context of relationships. Kahlo’s work portrayed her own life experiences especially her relationship with herself, her body and her husband.

Their Summative Assessment piece was to create a collage artwork which depicted a relationship that was important to them.

It was very interesting to see the student’s final artworks, as some of students showed both creative skill and an ability to express an idea. While other students explained that it was challenging for them to show an important relationship through art.



About Miss Frolchenko

Originally from Australia I am currently living and teaching at an international school in Rome, Italy.
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