Monday, February 4, 2013

Keith Haring for kids

Yawwwwwn! Mondays are rough enough, but Monday morning after the Super Bowl? Fahgeddaboutit. While I really did not care about the game itself (I'm a STEELERS girl), I wasn't going to say no to a random opportunity for fabulous food with friends. And OBVIOUSLY Destiny's Child was going to reunite, so I had to see that. The commercials were so-so, though I did get misty over that sweet Clydesdale. And the power outage was interesting. Anyway, here's a project to perk you up!

I forget where I originally saw this project, or something similar that inspired this project. But it's been done all over the place, including here and here. I used to do this with fourth graders but this year bumped it down to third, and they are LOOOOVING it!

Keith Haring hails from Reading, Pennsylvania, so despite his fame coming from his time in NYC, this project fulfills our "study the art of a PA artist" curriculum requirement. Score!

We start by looking at Haring's kid-friendly works. The kids and I both particularly enjoy photos of Haring doing his subway drawings.

After I show the students how to 'beef up a stick figure,' they work on some sketches before working on their final compositions. This year, I went with 12" square paper.

Every figure is traced with black Sharpie before it is colored in with markers. This part usually takes us into the second day, when kiddos then use a variety of lines to outline their figures.

Those 'bumps' are supposed to be crossed arms. Mmm hm.

Keith Haring, third grade style. This project covers simple figure drawing, composition, repetition, rhythm, movement, variety... and general awesomeness.

By the way, for those kiddos who finished their last project early, I did a quick demo on this Bad Hair Day project so they'd have some practice with repetition, variety, and lines out the wazoo, which really helped prep them for this Haring adventure.


  1. This is awesome - I love using Keith Haring and I like your way of using his art to practice repetition, variety and lines! Found you on "Draw the Line"... great blog, can't wait to see what else you have! :)

    1. Thank you! This one is a real hit with the kiddos. I spent yesterday after school on your blog and am looking forward to following you now!