My fourth and fifth grade students have done a wonderful lesson on Chinese
calligraphy that was written by a teacher (now retired) in our district,
I can briefly describe the unit and if you'd like more information, I can
tell you more.
After introducing the students to Chinese painting and calligraphy using a
filmstrip on Oriental Art, we make simple four page accordian style books
using strips of white sulfite paper for the pages and crepe paper squares
and smaller oaktag squares for the covers.
We have a slide presentation(slides made from books on calligraphy and
painting) on calligraphy, the development of writing in China, a character
and calligraphic line qualities, the use of calligraphy with painting and
the expressive idea of CHI - the dynamic state of energy and motion.
The students use ink or thinned black tempera with bamboo brushes to
practice various brush strokes and the making of calligraphic lines.
Then the students do a creative visualization to develop a "character" that
will become their personal signature. They refine and practice this
"character" on paper until they can write it over and over in a consistent
manner. They then sign their character on the first page of the accordian
book and then repeat their signature three more times in the books of other
students (sort of an autograph book)
I extend this lesson to then examine the art work of WANG Yani and I
particularly like the image from School Arts several years back of "The Lion
is Awake". This image has most of the concepts contained in it --painting
and calligraphy combined, calligraphic lines (thicks and thins in
combination), many of the classic brush strokes can be located (Bone stroke,
strike or kick strokes), and the expressive quality of CHI.
After their individual character has been developed, the students can sign
their future sumi-e paintings with their character and or a chop stamp print
that we make using plasticine clay and a red stamp pad.
From: Peggi Brewton
Subject: Chinese art ideas
>I wonder if anyone out there has ideas for a unit on Chinese art for the