I originally found this lesson while browsing "Adventures of an Art Teacher". I pinned her tornado safety pictures to my 'Art Lesson' board on Pinterest. I have since been eagerly waiting for spring to try my spin on this idea.
The very first day we didn't discuss tornadoes at all - instead I had the students close their eyes and imagine they were driving up to their home. I asked them to think and look at their home and proceeded to help them think through what their home looked like:
- is it a house?
- is it an apartment?
- do you live in a condo?
- do you live in a trailer?
- How many windows do you see?
- How many doors?
- Where are the windows and doors?
- What color is your home?
- What shape is your home? - tall and skinny? short and flat? square? rectangle?
- Are there shutters by the windows?
- Is there a chimney?
After this I asked students to draw their home LARGE on a sheet of paper. They then outlined with sharpie and colored it with crayons. I did my best to stress they color their house the color it is - apparently there are some rainbow and duel colored homes out there. ::wink wink:: If students got this far then they cut out their house and glued it to a piece of dark grey construction paper.
Next class students and I discussed Tornadoes - what are they, how do they form, what to do to stay safe during a Tornado. This discussion was pretty informative for them and for me. After we talked for a bit I explained the plan for the day.
After a quick demonstration on tearing paper - We pass out their homes, black paper for the tornado, sentences about how to stay safe around tornadoes, and oil pastels. Students ripped their construction paper, glued it down. Next, they cut their sentence to fit in the tornado, being careful to read the sentence back before gluing it down. After this was completed students used oil pastels to finish out details. Again, we are working on making color choices that make sense - ie: magenta clouds aren't very tornado like.
Most of these turned out AWESOME and I love the diversity in homes, tornadoes and even details that got added in later!