Grade Level: Kindergarten

Sandra O’Connor
Grade Level: Kindergarten
Lesson Subject: Visual arts based on a literature theme
Lesson Duration: 5 minute opening, 15 minute center, 5 minute close


Lesson Topic: Visual arts lesson based on a literature theme of real and make believe, in which the students explore the difference between real and make believe through the creation of spoon people.

Rationale: It is necessary for the students to understand the concept of real and make believe in order to use cognitive skill during problem solving. The visual arts offer an avenue for concrete exploration of real and make believe. The lesson presented here will facilitate the students’ artistic perception, creative expression, as well as his or her aesthetic valuing. Through the manipulation of materials, personal choices and verbal discussion, the students’ will skillfully create a spoon person they can share.

Artistic Perception: Given the appropriate materials, all students will be able to construct a spoon person by following directions.

Creative Expression: All students will be able to choose clothing, yarn and draw facial expressions so that he/she creates a spoon person which is unique to him/her.

Aesthetic Valuing: All students will verbally state one real and one make believe quality about his/her spoon person. The LEP student will demonstrate understanding through animated movements of his/her spoon person, accompanied by speech.

Strategy: Direct Instruction

Vocabulary: No new vocabulary is needed.

I will begin by stating, today we are going to make these spoon people while showing examples of two completed spoons, a boy and girl. I will then pose the questions: Are these real people? Why do you think that? What is not real about them? Could we pretend they are real? How would you do that? Continue by explaining, you will each choose a spoon that looks like this (show example of skeleton spoon). Next you will glue the clothes of your choice onto the body. Once that is done, you can put on the yarn for hair. You can make it look like you or someone else you love. If you need help, I will help you. You will be using Popsicle sticks to put glue on. Remember to use only a little bit of glue. Have examples near the activity center.

Pupil activity sequence:

  • Choose a spoon skeleton.
  • Choose which clothing you want.
  • Cover the foam area with glue; add some to the pipe cleaner neck and arms.
  • Put clothes onto foam and pipe cleaner.
  • Choose which ribbon to use for belt and attach with glue.
  • Choose yarn color for hair.
  • Spread glue onto the forehead of spoon.
  • Attach yarn end one at a time until forehead is covered.
  • Turn over and spread glue on the back of the spoon head.
  • Fold yarn over and attach to glue, trim as necessary.
  • Choose a colored marker to draw a nose and mouth.
  • Attach label to handle and place on counter to dry.
  • Closure: Once the spoon dolls are completed or nearly so, ask the students to identify one real quality and one make believe quality about their spoon person. Upon completion of centers, gather all students on the rug. Begin by saying, Today we made spoon people and talked about how they were real and make believe. What were some of the things you said? What could we do with these spoon people? Did you like this activity? Raise your hand if you would like to share your spoon person.

    Evaluation: The teacher will observe that each student who comes through the center completes a unique spoon person. The teacher will listen for appropriate responses from the student, which indicate a distinction between real and make believe.


  • Wooden cooking spoons- one for each student. If you have children of different ethnicity in the class, you can dye the spoons by soaking them in a strong Lipton tea bath.
  • Foam sheets (Foamies)- cut into approximately 1 _ x 2 _ inch rectangle. Use tacky glue or hot glue to attach to spoon. Attach as body. Two sheets are enough for 20 spoons.
  • Pipe cleaners- one for each spoon. Wrap 2 times around neck directly above foam pad; adjust as needed for arms.
  • Cloth material- several different types of clothing material cut into flat representations of a shirt, dress, and pair of pants. Keep in mind what styles of material are prevalent in your area, such as jean, flannel etc. This keeps the project more personal, thus meaningful. Remnants are available at most fabric places.
  • Ribbon- assorted ribbon remnants to be used as jeans belt and dress ties. This is an optional accessory but adds greatly to the project. However, the children have the ultimate decision in choosing to use it or not.
  • Yarn- various shades of yarn for the hair. Choose according to students represented in your class Cut to a manageable length, reaching at least from the forehead of the spoon to the nape of the neck.
  • Tacky glue- for attaching clothing and hair. You will also need it to put on eyes.
  • Wiggle eyes- size according to spoon face.
  • Markers- black, brown, red . . . use for nose, mouth, eyebrows if wanted.
  • Baby wipes for clean up. You might want to have a sponge handy if you are lucky enough to have a sink in your room.
  • Small plastic containers for glue.
  • Popsicle sticks
  • Labels
  • Have the skeleton of the spoon people made ahead of time. This would include, spoon, foam body, pipe cleaner and eyes. At this level, you want to have as much done ahead of time for a 15 minute center.

    Clean up: The students will clean their area when done with the spoon person and before moving on to the next center. The students in the last group will also throw away containers of glue. The teacher will introduce and remove items such as clothing, yarn, ribbon and glue to appropriate containers.

    Extensions: This lesson could be adapted to levels of k-adult. The use of spoon people as props, puppets, and story starters would enhance theme units. The look is as flexible as fashion. The children who where involved in this lesson immediately became animated, dancing the spoons around while creating lilting character lines. For an art based focus, the spoon people would lend itself during a study on found object art. This lesson could be extended over a period of time. For the kindergarten class, each day could have 1 center as spoon doll construction. The students would then create the whole thing. During this time 1 other center could be writing a story page to go along with each individual spoon person so that the end result would be a class big book. On Friday of that week, 1 or 2 centers would be devoted to each child speaking his page of the big book while using his/her spoon as a puppet.

    LEP: The arts are always a very good avenue for expressing oneself. For the LEP student, the frustration of being unable to communicate fluently can be diminished by providing activities that are clearly understood. This activity lends itself to providing that opportunity. First, it is a very visual, hands on, direct instruction event. Secondly, evaluation can occur by watching the student interact with the materials. Animated movements, along with speech, demonstrate the understanding of using another voice, or pretend. One on one teacher interaction will further his/her understanding. By using spoons of different colors, the attitude of acceptance is transmitted. The spoons are also of differing heights.