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Education Home Search Lesson Plans All Curricula Beginning Language through Art: An ESL Enrichment Curriculum Lesson Plans Looking at Still Life Lesson 1: The Subject and Objects of Still Life
Looking at Still Life Lesson 1: The Subject and Objects of Still Life

Grades/Level: Adult Learners
Subjects: Visual Arts, English–Language Arts, ESL
Time Required: Single Class Lesson

Author: Getty Museum Education Staff

For the Classroom
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Still Life Overview and Vocabulary
Decorative Arts Overview and Vocabulary
Photography Overview and Vocabulary

Lesson Overview

Students learn about and discuss the objects commonly found in still-life paintings.

Learning Objectives

• Students will identify the objects pictured in still lifes.
• Students will indicate which of a set of objects are natural and which are man-made.
• Students will use new vocabulary.

Materials

• Image of Still Life: Game, Vegetables, Fruit, Cockatoo by Adriaen van Utrecht
• Image of Still Life with Flowers and Fruit by Claude Monet
• Looking at Still Life Student Worksheet 1a
• Looking at Still Life Student Worksheet 1b
• Picture dictionary or realia or cutouts of fruits, vegetables, and containers (optional)

Lesson Steps

• Explain that artists throughout time have employed the subject of still life using a traditional group of objects, some natural and some man-made.

• Display Still Life: Game, Vegetables, Fruit, Cockatoo.

• Point out the objects in the painting. Introduce the vocabulary to students.

• Employ early production strategies to help students use this vocabulary.

1. Ask yes/no questions (Is this a tablecloth?).
2. Ask or questions (Is this a tabletop or a tablecloth?)
3. Ask wh- questions (What is on the tablecloth?)
4. Make open-ended statements (The tablecloth is on the . . .)

• Write the vocabulary on the board.

• Display Still Life with Flowers and Fruit. Repeat the process given above.

• Ask students to identify objects that are present in both paintings or that are unique to one painting.

• Ask students to identify which objects are natural and which are man-made.

STUDENT WORKSHEETS
• For reinforcement of the vocabulary and concepts, use Student Worksheet 1a. Distribute the worksheet to students and have them fill in the blanks with the correct vocabulary words.

• For reinforcement of the difference between natural and man-made objects, use Student Worksheet 1b. Distribute the worksheet to students and have them list which objects are natural and which are man-made.

SUGGESTED ACTIVITIES
• Using realia or a picture dictionary, teach the names of different fruits and vegetables and have students identify which fruits and vegetables are depicted in the paintings.

• Using realia or a picture dictionary, teach the names of different containers and have students identify which containers are depicted in the paintings.

• Using realia or cutouts of fruits, vegetables, containers, etc., have students construct their own still lifes and identify the objects for their classmates.

• Using realia or cutouts of fruits, vegetables, containers, etc., have students construct their own still lifes and draw and label their compositions.

Still Life with Flowers and Fruit / Monet
Still Life with Flowers and Fruit, Claude Monet, 1869

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