Georgia O’Keeffe Flowers in Bloom

Georgia O'Keeffe Lesson Plan on Prezi

This just in…. Spring has arrived and we are ready to plant our artistic flowers.

In the spring, I usually have my students create Georgia O’Keeffe style flowers.  Click here to visit the whole lesson plan on my Prezi.  I have taught this lesson to all grade levels from kindergarten to 12thgrade.  This is a very successful lesson plan at any grade level.  I adjust the materials and the method in which I approach each grade level.

Image from Grace Dow Library

Image from Grace Dow Library

For my kindergarten through second grade students I read the story My Name is Georgia by Jeanette Winter.

Image from

We also look at 100 flowers by Georgia O’Keeffe.  When we look at the book I have the students use thumbs up and thumbs down method of communicating what they are thinking.  I do this because the students become so excited that it spills over into over joyful noise.

Since there are a hundred flowers I usually do the following:

  • Have students give student thumbs up if they like the picture or thumbs down if they don’t like it.  A sideways thumb if they have no opinion.   Occasionally ask students why they think their particular way.
  • Have students name the different lines that they see a flower.
  • Have students name the different colors that they see in a flower.
  • Have students give thumbs up if the flower touches all four sides of the page.
  • Have the students give thumbs up if the flower shows emphasis.
  • For my older students we look at the images, but I also explain her use of color and value and emphasis that she made her flowers big.

Afterwards, I demonstrate how to look at flower and the edges.  I usually use oil pastels with my younger students (If I am feeling brave I take out paint for 25 kindergarten students).  I have no para that assists in the classroom so we use wet paper towels to wash our hands over the trash can.  I also explain that today is a no hug day until their hands are clean.  I also have them practice itching their nose with the back of their hand.  The video below is a video on how to paint a flower.

After students create their flower I have them write an artist statement which includes a title, their name, and a paragraph about their flower.  See the example below

Yellow Flower by Christy Berry

Yellow Flower

By Mrs. Berry

While walking through the Dow Gardens I saw this particular flower with the sunlight behind it.  I took a quick photo to paint it later.  I waited a couple of weeks and thought about how big I wanted to paint it.  I finally decided on a 18 x 24 inch painting.  I printed off the photograph and then started to work.  My daughter also painted a mini version while I painted the larger one.  I spent around two hours every night for five nights working in the basement on it.  The photograph and the painting are a little different; however, I wanted my artistic flare.  I finished the painting with my signature and hung it on the wall.

Please enjoy my lesson and may your garden bloom!

-Mrs. Berry


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