Leaf Man flew into my classroom and into the boundless imaginations of my first graders. While reading the beautiful book, we picked out all of the leaf people and leaf animals that we could find. We talked about what details make it what it is? I ask, how can you tell it's a cow, or a turkey? I am always telling my kids that details are what make an artwork special and tell a story. We talked about if a leaf turkey didn't have a wattle(aka: red thing), would it look like a turkey? If a leaf cow didn't have an udder, would it look like a cow? If a leaf duck didn't have a beak and webbed feet, would it still look like a duck?
Even before the book was finished, lots of the kids were asking, "Will we make a Leaf Man!!!??"... Of course we will!
I wanted to keep my demonstration short and open-ended, because I feel this lesson is all about exploration and play.
I talked to the kids about...
-thinking of what details your leaf person or animal has.
-using the right amount of glue.
-beginning with a large leaf for the body and building off of it.
-cutting pieces of leaves in a contrasting color for details.
The results are amazingly beautiful! I love how each 'leaf person' or 'leaf animal' has it's own unique character!
When the kids finished their projects, I had them think of a story that their 'leaf person' or 'leaf animal' is part of. I prompted them to think about:
What could they be doing?
Where could they be?
What is your leaf person or animal like?
They shared there stories with the other kids at their tables.
I so love this book and accompanied lesson, it encourages the kids to see creative possibilities wherever they are and using the humblest of materials.
Check out the whole leaf gang on Artsonia!