This is right up my alley. We're doing Picasso in grades 3rd through 5th. Two
exciting lessons are oil pastel Picasso portraits and clay masks.
Another art teacher in Martin County came up with drawing with oil pastels on
black paper 12 x 18". Their non drawing hand traces their profile from the top
of their forehead to their chin, while the drawing hand draws a line profile
down the center of their page. I demo this for them on the board. One vertical
side of the paper they have to draw realistically, while the other side of the
drawing they can make eyes, nose and mouth very abstract. Patterns for the
clothing and the background can be very patterned and decorative. We look at
the "Weeping Woman" painting by Picasso for ideas.
Clay masks are first rolled out on a roller table to a little less than 1/2"
thickness. I stress drawing first before cutting out a shape. Pulling clay out
and carving are also stressed. Abstract features on the face, pierced noses
and earrings abound. I usually have them curl the masks slightly with bunched
up newspapers underneath before they leave. I put in the holes for hanging and
get their initials on the back. After they are fired, they paint them with
tempera paints and attach a pipe cleaner to the mask to hang it. This last
lesson I observed at another art ed. teacher's class and I adapted it to a
Hope this helps.