Wednesday, March 30, 2011

State Birthday Cake Drawings

This is my favorite of the projects I left with my sub during maternity leave.  The project was completed in 1 or 2 class periods depending on the schedule and snow days and was taught to K-3rd.  This year Kansas turned 150 and I knew there would be even more celebrating happening at school this year than any other year I could remember.  The instructions I left were for my sub to read a book called "One Kansas Farmer: A Kansas Counting Book" that I was given for Christmas a couple of years ago.  The book obviously has counting as implied by the name but had some cool facts about Kansas that I didn't even know before!  (Did you know that Kansas leads the nation in helium export?)  They talked about symbolism and our state symbols (meadowlark, bison, sunflower, etc.) before looking at a PowerPoint with slides of interestingly decorated cakes.  I said to pretty much let Kindergarten and 1st grade students draw cakes their own way but made examples of how to draw cylinders to show perspective and visually stack them to look like a layered cake.  The students drew the form of their cakes first, added symbols for Kansas, and colored with colored pencils (Kindergarten used crayons.)  I will definitely use this lesson again because of all the great things it teaches (perspective, drawing, symbolism) with a local social studies tie in.

 The Kinder-cakes!

If I had more Art time with my older students, I would have them do an Art History version.  At last year's KAEA conference, we celebrated 75 years of KAEA and had tables decorated with the coolest cake sculptures based on artists from history!  I wish I would have taken some photos to share with you all!


  1. This would be so easy to adapt to any state. AZ turns 100 next year in Feb so will have to try it then! Thanks for the inspiration...