I searched the internet a little first, since this is kind of an abstract concept for a fourth grader, I wanted to see what other people had done to hopefully give me a little inspiration. What I found was a crayola lesson
that used weather to express a mood. While I wasn’t crazy about the lesson plan itself, I LOVED the artwork they used to inspire the lesson. So I used that as inspiration for my own lesson.
I had my students look at Louisa Chase’s “Cloudburst”, De Goya’s “Spring”, and Charles Burchfield’s “September Wind and Rain”. We talked about the different colors and weather in each painting, and how they added a mood or emotion to the work.
I then had my students break up into pairs, and assigned each pair a mood. Together, the pairs had to complete a work sheet in which they described different ways to use only color and weather to express the assigned mood. They also had to create thumbnail sketches, or small rough rough drafts, of images they could eventually turn into a painting.
I’m glad I had them work together at first, I think having someone to talk it out with really helped them grasp the concept.
The images included in this post are some of the finished products. We used flat washes of paint to cover large areas, and then liquid tempera to fill in the details. Overall I am very happy with the way these paintings turned out. It was a challenge at first, but worthwhile in the end!