Here’s the thing about the element of shape… kids draw shapes all the time. Young children naturally draw in two dimensions. There are some elements like form and space that can be little more daunting for a student of any age to really understand and illustrate. But, shapes? The element of shape can be explored and enjoyed by even the youngest artist.
Kids can sink their teeth into this element and enjoy identifying shapes in art work and their environment as well as making their own shapes!
Shapes are flat. Forms are fat.
I love using picture books to introduce concepts to kids. Even big kids enjoy listening to a book now and then and I think children’s literature is an easy way to provide some context for concepts. The element of shape is no different! When a Line Bends a Shape Begins by Rhonda Gowler Greene has been on my bookshelf for years. It’s a short, fun way to show that shapes are just an area enclosed by a line.
Shapes can be categorized in one of two categories; they are either geometric or they are organic.
Geometric shapes tend to have specific names. Think along the lines of circles, squares, and rectangles. These are the shapes we teach our little ones to identify.
Organic shapes are the usually free flowing. I like to call them “blobs” or “splotches.” Shapes like this tend to be curvy and have no specific name. Organic shapes are recognizable as a trademark in the work of Henri Matisse. Check out these easy paper collages that focus on organic forms that were inspired by Matisse!
Using the element of shape printable…
Use this printable as a reference for your student and as a place for them to make some notes of their own. How many shapes can they come up with? Who has the most unique shapes that no one else has drawn?
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Check out the original “Elements of Art” post here with links to all other elements plus their coordinating printables!
Check out this “Elements of Art Printable Book” perfect for elementary aged kids. Each page is dedicated to one of the elements of art. It’s a great place to start!
Check out this book list as another fun and easy way to introduce the elements of art to your little people!