This year my students participated in something called the 4H China Art Exchange. This program is run through Michigan State University and 4H. What I like about the program is that my students learn about Chinese children and their artwork.
I built a whole unit around the exchange and hit several Michigan benchmarks at the same time. This is just one part of the unit.
Once we receive the kit I explain to the students what the exchange is and how it works. I also explain that we need to treat these pieces of artwork with the utmost respect and how to handle these one of a kind pieces of art.
Students then look at and analyze the artwork and answer the following questions:
- Name three shapes in the drawing.
- Name three lines in the drawing.
- Name three colors in the drawing.
- What is happening in this picture?
- Do you like this picture? Why?
- Do you dislike this picture? Why?
- What do you see in this picture that is similar to things in your life?
- What did the Chinese child who painted this picture want to tell you?
- What feelings do you have when you look at this picture?
- Would you ever think of doing a painting or drawing like this one?
- How do you think the picture was made? What art materials are used in it?
Afterwards students present their finding by either reading their worksheet, through a poem, story, or a skit.
Then students create their own visual letter back to the students in China. I picked the top ten based on completeness, originality, craftsmanship, and visual storytelling.
This program is available to K-6 students in the state of Michigan. Please contact your local MSU extension office or click here to visit their website.
Please enjoy our video.