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KATIE DIVEN-Art Integration Unit Plan Template

Art Integration Unit Plan Template

LTC Art for Children
Katie Diven-Orange Block

Unit Title & Big Idea:

The big idea that students will be exploring throughout this unit is transformation. Students will
be using the idea of transformation to cycles in science. Using recycled materials and
inspiration from cartoon artists, students will design a comic strip that represents the sequence
of events in a science cycle (like the water cycle). Students will be analyzing the work of artists
that use recycled materials as well as comic strip artists to demonstrate the relationship in the
sequence of a cycle. Afterwards, students will have the opportunity to share their work with their
classmates and teach them about their process of incorporating art in science. In addition,
students will share their work with the school by creating a gallery and writing up a description of
their piece to explain to others what they did. Students will be analyzing artists work to get
inspiration about how they want to incorporate recycled materials as well as how to represent
their cycle in a comic strip. Most importantly, students will be free to explore the transformation
in science cycles in a fun, engaging art unit!

Grade Level/Class Periods


Unit Overview/Summary:
Cycles in science are important to teach because they are constantly changing. These cycles are
what help keep our planet going. In this unit, I hope that my students will have a better
understanding and appreciation for science as well as art. Since science is often neglected in
elementary schools, I want to make sure my students have a solid foundation in science content.
It is important to teach students about science cycles because we go through cycles each day.
For example, the time of day as well as days of the week are cycles. Other common science
cycles are the food chain, life cycles, the water cycle, seasons, and plant/animal cycles. By
teaching science cycles, students are getting a better understanding of the world around them
and they can use this knowledge to create art projects that represent the world around them.
Through this unit, I hope my students find an appreciation for science as well as art. I hope my
students find the Earth fascinating in how it keeps itself going through cycles. In addition, I hope
this project encourages my students to take on a more active role in the community around
them and perhaps even forming a recycling club to keep the Earth green and healthy.

To teach this lesson, I will
be incorporating a
powerpoint to introduce my
students to the artists I
want them to analyze and
research. Here are the
websites I will be directing
them to:
Vik Muniz:
Mary Ellen Croteau:
In addition, to incorporate

Grade Level: 3rd/4th Grade

Class Periods Required:
Science Transformation
Cycles: 3-4 weeks
Art Integration Activity-4
class periods

KATIE DIVEN-Art Integration Unit Plan Template

the comic strip part, I will

have a Calvin and Hobbes
book available for them to
For the actual lesson, I will
-Tissue paper
-Recycled materials (plastic
bags, magazines, scratch
paper, recycled objectsbottle caps, water bottles,
plastic, etc.)
-White paper to create on
From creating my teaching
exemplar, I learned that
the students will need time
to think of their idea as
well as gather their
materials. I will need to
give them plenty of studio
time to organize
themselves before they
start their projects. Also, it
can get a little messy, so I
will need to give them time
to clean up/wash their
hands. Overall, have a lot
of recycled materials to
choose from! Encourage
them to bring any
materials from home they

KATIE DIVEN-Art Integration Unit Plan Template

Key Concepts (3-4)

What will students learn and KNOW about art and art making
from this lesson?
-Through this lesson, students will learn about how they can
create works of art completely from recycled material. They
will learn about Vik Muniz, Brazilian artist and photographer,
and how he primarily works in series, incorporating the use of
recycled materials and objects such as diamonds, sugar,
thread, chocolate syrup, and garbage. In his practice, he
creates bold, ironic, and often deceiving imagery from pop
culture and art history. They will also investigate Mary Ellen
Croteau, a bottle caps artist who creates beautiful pieces of
art with a message. She works with non-recycled plastic waste
in an effort to demonstrate the huge amounts of trash we are
consuming and sending into the environment.
-In this unit, students will also look at comic strip artists,
particularly Calvin and Hobbes. By analyzing the work of Bill
Watterson (Calvin and Hobbes creator), they will begin to
understand how to represent a relationship between people or
objects in a comic strip. For example, sometimes there are no
words in a comic strip, only images and representations.
These are the types of comic stripes my students will be
creating-silent ones with pictorial representations.
-We will also be discussing the meaning and definition of art
during this unit as we explore different ways to create works
of art. For example, most students will think of art as drawing
or creating something with art materials. They have probably
not worked with recycled material before, so we will be
discussing as a group if this is still art.
-From the production of art, students will learn how elements
work together to create a message. By incorporating recycled

would like to use in their

Essential Questions (3-4) What questions guide the investigation in this
-What is art? What is the purpose of art? Are there certain
guidelines for creating a piece of art?
- How does using recycled materials and objects constitute
-How can we use a comic strip to represent a relationship
between a sequence of events?
-How can we share what we created with our peers?
-How can we teach others what we have learned through this
-What will we do to integrate what we learned into the
community? How do we take it a step further?

KATIE DIVEN-Art Integration Unit Plan Template

materials into a comic strip, they will be creating a

relationship with their materials and creating a meaning to
share with their audience.
-In the science unit, students will be learning about the types
of cycles and patterns that occur. For example, the water
cycle, the life cycle of plant and animals, weather/climate
patterns, planet/star patterns, and the food chain. They will
use these concepts to create a comic strip that will represent
the sequence of events and the relationship between the
Unit Objectives: (Excellent resource at
What learners will DO? List beginning with the student will
-The student will show an understanding of common patterns and cycles found in science.
-The student will develop connections between art and science by creating a comic strip of a science cycle with recycled
classroom materials.
-The student will demonstrate their understanding of how to represent a relationship between a sequence of events through
art and science.
-The student will demonstrate their ability to take their knowledge and learning a step further by devising a plan to share what
they learned with their community.
Grade Level Expectations (GLEs)


Core Academic Standards (Common Core State Standards)



Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)

STRAND I: Product/Performance
1. Select and apply two-dimensional media, techniques, and processes to
communicate ideas and solve challenging visual art problems
-Demonstrate an additive process (e.g., string, card-board, glue, found objects)
STRAND I: Product/Performance
3. Communicate ideas about subject matter and themes in artworks created for
various purposes
-Create an original artwork that communicates ideas about the following
The Environment

1.Space Systems: Patterns and Cycles

1-ESS1-1.Use observations of the sun, moon, and stars to describe patterns
that can be predicted.
3.Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems
3-LS2-1.Construct a model to represent the relationships in the food chain.
3.Inheritance and Variation of Traits: Life Cycles and Traits
3-LS1-1.Develop models to describe that organisms have unique and diverse
life cycles but all have in common birth, growth, reproduction, and death.

KATIE DIVEN-Art Integration Unit Plan Template

Time (e.g., past, present, future)
STRAND III: Artistic Perceptions (AP)
1. Investigate the nature of art and discuss responses to artworks
-Discuss and develop answers to questions about art, such as:
What is art?
What is beauty?
STRAND IV: Interdisciplinary Connections (IC)
2. Explain the connections between Visual Art and Communication Arts,
Math, Science or Social Studies
Explain how social ideas are reflected in student artworks

Content Areas Integrated:

1. Visual Art
2. Science
3. Social Science-Community Service

Lesson Titles in Sequence/Order with TIME and MATERIALS

needed for each portion

3.Weather and Climate

3-ESS2-2.Obtain and combine information to describe climates in different
regions of the world and the patterns in weather.
Social Studies:
NCSS-National Council for Social Studies
What is the importance of political leadership and public

Identify & define common vocabulary/concepts that

connect the art form with the other identified subject area(s):
-Science: systematic knowledge of the physical or material
world gained through observation and experimentation.
-Art: the quality, production, expression, or realm, according
to aesthetic principles, of what is beautiful, appealing, or of
more than ordinary significance.
-Cycle: any complete round or series of occurrences that
repeats or is repeated.
-Recycle: to treat or process (used or waste materials) so as
to make suitable for reuse
-Analyze: to examine critically, so as to bring out the
essential elements or give the essence of.
-Relationship: a connection, association, or involvement.
-Community Service: voluntary work, intended to be for the
common good, usually done as part of an organized scheme
Brief Lesson Descriptions (2-3 sentences each)
1. I will discuss the overall unit with the class and begin

KATIE DIVEN-Art Integration Unit Plan Template

1. Introduce the lesson to the class and have a brief
description of the overall unit. (10-15 mins)
2. Show the prepared powerpoint to introduce the artists
and give a gallery walk through some of their works of
art (20 mins)
3. Give out a handout that explains the Science Cycle
assignment and address any questions/concerns (10
4. Allow students work time to analyze the artists style
and craft. During this time, they should also be
brainstorming about their projects they want to create
as well as the materials they would like to use. (30-40
5. Have students meet with me one-on-one if they are
having trouble/have them run an idea by me (10 mins)
6. Show my teacher example and explain the different
science cycles that they can research to create their
projects (20 mins)
7. Studio time! (40-45 mins)
8. As students begin to finish, have them create a little
description box to hang with their project in the gallery
9. As a group, have students come up with a plan to raise
awareness for science cycles and how we can help keep
them thriving (community outreach)
10.Share projects in the gallery








the exploration of science cycles. Students will be

taken through the transformation of a number of
different cycles including the water cycle, plant cycle,
animal cycle, food chain, weather/climate patterns, and
planet/star patterns. We will also discuss what a cycle
is and the relationship between the stages of the cycle.
Students will be shown a powerpoint presentation
about three different artists and their works of art: Vik
Muniz, Mary Ellen Croteau, and Bill Watterson (Calvin
and Hobbes creator). They will learn about the brief
background of each and get a chance to see some of
their famous and more well-known works of art.
Students will be given a handout for the Science Cycles
lesson that will explain to them all the requirements of
the project. I will address any questions/concerns at
this time.
Students will be given time to research these artists
and their works of art. They can take gallery walks
books/materials to get a sense of the themes
portrayed. They will also be thinking about their
projects and what they might want to do.
If need be, students can meet with me one-on-one and
talk to me about their ideas. I will give feedback and
help them gain the resources they need to create their
projects the way they want to.
I will show my teacher example and answer any
questions. Students will also come talk to me about the
science cycle they are wanting to portray in their comic
and think about the materials they will need to gather.
STUDIO TIME! Students will be given class time to work
on their projects. I am available for help during this
time and will be walking around to observe/conference.
As students finish their projects, I will be having them

KATIE DIVEN-Art Integration Unit Plan Template

create little description boxes to place with their

projects in the gallery. They will need to answer the
represents. I wanted to do this because. The
relationships I saw were.
9. As students are researching science cycles, they will
come across the things we can do to help the planet
continue in these vital cycles (for example, recycling
more, planting flowers/other plants). As a class, we will
be discussing what we can do as a community of
learners to raise awareness and help encourage others
to keep our planet green and moving! If there is an
interest, we can hang posters encouraging others to
recycle and explain the benefits of recycling.
10.Present the projects in the gallery! Have students
describe their projects to their peers and wrap up with
any questions/comments.
What student prior knowledge will this unit require/draw upon?
Since this is an integrated lesson involving art, science, and social studies, students will not need to have a concrete
understanding of the topics discussed. They will be getting their information from the lesson itself and building connections
during their investigations. It would be helpful if students knew what a comic was so that the idea was not completely new to
them, but even if that is the case, they will not be at a disadvantage. Before and during this lesson, students will be taught
about art words and meanings and how they can be connected to science and social studies.
What activities will you use to engage students in imagining, exploring, and/or experimenting in this unit?
Students will be given a class period to explore the resources to get an idea of what they want to do for their project. They will
have the opportunity to analyze and investigate the work of Vik Muniz, Mary Ellen Croteau, and the Calvin and Hobbes comics.
In their investigations, they will get an understanding of how the artists use recycled materials to create their artwork and
what message that sends to their audience. In addition, they will understand the relationship between people and objects that
is portrayed through a comic. They will have the chance to explore the process before they begin brainstorming for their final
product. Once they have an understanding, they can begin to brainstorm ideas for their own project. They can start gathering
materials they would like to use and make a plan of action.
How will this unit permit/encourage students to solve problems in divergent ways?
In most classrooms, students hear information and are expected to know it by time the test comes around. Within this unit,

KATIE DIVEN-Art Integration Unit Plan Template

students are able to explore the course content and build connections in their own way. Since this unit integrates three
different content areas, students can begin to see the relationship between courses and the material taught in each. They can
begin to explore other ways to solve problems and think outside the box. By incorporating art, students are encouraged to use
their individuality to solve problems and create something unique. This teaches students to trust themselves and believe in
the work that they can accomplish.
How will you engage students in routinely reflecting on their learning/learning processes?
This activity gives students the ability to routinely reflect on their learning process. For example, students will be asked to
think deeply about how they can relate what they created to the community outside of school. Using what they have learned
about science cycles, they will be asked to come up with a plan to raise awareness for recycling and the benefits it provides. In
addition, they will be reflecting on their artwork by exploring what it means to create art. Do you have to use certain materials
for it to be considered art? How do your creations reflect your own thinking process?
How will this unit engage students in assessing their own work?
Students will be displaying their projects in a gallery. They will be asked to write up a short description of their piece that will
provide an explanation for those who are unfamiliar with the project. This summative assessment encourages students to take
action in their work and to be proud of their final product. I will also be conducting small, formative assessments with my
students during their creative process. I will be observing and actively listening to their conversations about art as well as the
core subject material. I will be listening for how they define art and what it means to them to create artwork.
What opportunities/activities will students be given to revise and improve their understandings and their work?
Students will always be free to revise and improve their pieces of art. Sometimes we look back on a project and realize we
could have done something more or gone a different direction, so students are always free to improve themselves and practice
if they desire. If they are unhappy about the grade, they can talk to me and we can figure out a plan of action. To make up
points, I will have them put more time and effort into their community service portion. For example, I would have them come
up with a detailed plan of action for something we could do as a class to raise awareness for art and using recycled materials
in art (the benefits in science as well). They will be encouraged to talk to me to make a plan!
What opportunities/activities will you provide for students to share their learning/understanding/work in this unit?
As I said above, students will be presenting their projects in a gallery. They will be writing up a brief description of their project
so others will have an understanding of what they did and how they decided to portray that idea.
How will you adapt the various aspects of this lesson to differently-abled students?
This activity can be adapted and modified to meet the needs of individual students. This project gives students the ability to
present their learning in a divergent way, not an essay or written explanation. If a student needs some extra support/structure,
I would have them create a 3 part comic that explains a cycle in science. They would not be required to use recycled
materials, but rather use materials from around the room that they believe fits within their plan. To keep students engaged, I
will play some creative music to keep their creative minds flowing! Their projects will be student-centered, so students will be
engaged because it is something they decided to complete. To challenge students who finish early, I will encourage them to

KATIE DIVEN-Art Integration Unit Plan Template

create another one! If they do this, they will be able to display their series of science cycles in the gallery as a collection.
This lesson plan is completely adaptable and I can add/take things out to meet the needs of individual students.

TEACHER REFLECTION: How will you know that this lesson is successful and meaningful? List indicators.
I will know that this lesson is successful and meaningful when I see students create connections between art, science, and
social studies. When they are able to take what they have learned and use it in another classroom, I will know that this was
meaningful to them. They will have a deeper understanding of the material and be able to see relationships between the
concepts they are learning. I know it will be meaningful when they use their projects to create plans for the community to
continue fostering a safe, respectful environment and encourage others to keep Earth beautiful. In addition, I know it will be
successful when they dont want to leave the classroom! If they are so engaged in the material that they do not want to
transition to another activity, it will make it all worth it.

Silverstein, L. B. & Layne, S. (n.d.). Defining arts integration. Retrieved from