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Paintbrush Rocket | 3rd Grade – Radial Designs inspired by Tibetan Mandalas
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3rd Grade – Radial Designs inspired by Tibetan Mandalas

3rd Grade – Radial Designs inspired by Tibetan Mandalas

This lesson is ALWAYS successful… and for EVERY student.  I have used different artists or techniques as inspiration over the years.  This time, we looked at Tibetan Mandalas.  I showed students a Prezi I created on the Smartboard, ( Tibetan Mandala Prezi). I found a great time lapse video of Tibetan Monks creating a sand mandala.  The kids love it!  Feel free to borrow!20151109_114300    20151109_114308

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These are large, I have a 17″ matt board circle. I pre-trace them on 18×18 white 80lb paper for all my students.  After the Prezi, they cut them out. I have them fold the circle in half like a taco, then in half again like a quesadilla.  Then open and smooth out. We start painting a circle or square in the middle, where the folds cross.  Then paint 2-4 shapes ON THE FOLD to start the symmetry design. Always working from the center out, each shapes has to bump into the previous. I encourage students to turn the circle as they paint, always painting the shape with the same movement for consistency. After that, we start working in the middle of the sections, starting in the center again, working our way out.  Students rotate around the room in a circle, we always rotate the same way to start projects.  First day, we got around the room once. 6-7 tables.  Next class, (the stop motion video), I demonstrate how to take the design further.  Filling the space with more lines and shapes, maintaining symmetry.  Using pattern to fill in larger spaces or outline with extra colors around spaces.  I let students move freely for this portion of the lesson.  This way they can choose colors and take more time if needed.  Rules…. not more than 6 per table and no papers are allowed to overlap!  This is a project that builds confidence.  Students are always impressed with themselves in the end!  I have to say a lot of, “WOW! That is awesome! Beautiful!”  My favorite kind of project!!! 🙂





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