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These beautiful fish are modeled after fish decoys that were created in New York and the Great Lakes states for ice fishing. It’s believed that Native Americans passed the tradition onto European settlers of North America. Fish decoys are one of the earliest forms of American folk art.
Starting with a piece of corrugated cardboard, the kids draw a freshwater fish, choosing among the bass, trout, walleye, pike, or sunfish. This is a great introduction to a gridded drawing, and I share tips and resources for making this step successful. Working with oil pastels, the kids learn how to blend and layer for a rich looking artwork. We cut out the fish and display them on a wooden base or as wall hangings. These fish are amazing both as individual artworks and together as a display! This project ties in with the 5th grade social studies curriculum at our school, which focuses on the Americas.
Time Required: 90 minutes.
The 26-page project includes:
-Project Overview + Learning Objectives
-About Fish Decoys, an American Folk Art
-Photo Tutorial for Drawing and Oil Pastels
-Student Gallery, Grades 5-6
-How to Draw a Fish, Step-by-Step
-Line Drawings of 5 Freshwater Fish
-Oil Pastel Warm-up Sheet
Thanks for checking out the lesson! I teach art to children in Westchester, New York. My passion is creating art lessons for my students and sharing them with you.
You can follow me here on TpT, on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/ruthchapman.art/
and on Pinterest at https://www.pinterest.com/ruthchapman/
My personal art is at https://www.ruthchapmanart.com