Thursday, January 24, 2013

Australian Kangaroos

Fourth graders created Australian inspired art.  We looked at Aboriginal (Native Australian) art and discovered some key characteristics of Australian Art.  We learned about Aboriginal dot paintings and x-ray paintings.  Aborigines use dots to create implied lines and pictures.  X-ray paintings are often found on cave walls. These paintings show both the outside and the inside (bones and internal organs) of the animal at the same time.  We combined these practices with one of Australia's most famous marsupials the kangaroo! 

During work time we read an Aboriginal folktale about how the kangaroo got its pouch as well as non-fiction information about the kangaroo. This was a great project that was a lot of fun!

Learning Goals: The learner will...
- describe key characteristics of Aboriginal art
- create an x-ray painting
- create a color balanced dot painting
develop fine motor skills and techniques required for painting smooth lines


  1. This looks terrific! We'd love instructions. We're doing a multicultural night and our 5th graders are in charge of researching Australia. This would be a nice art project to decorate our booth.

    1. First we drew the kangaroos with pencil on brown paper and painted over the pencil lines with white tempera paint. The next time, we painted the backgrounds. The 3/4th time, we cut out the dry kangaroos and glued them onto the backgrounds and added the white lines between background shapes. I cut different diameters of dowel rods and used them to dip into our tempera paint trays (one per color). I love the tempera paint trays that we use with the screw tops because they enable the kids to get better coverage when they dip the dowel rods in (as apposed to using a flat tray or paper plate). I will never teach art without these trays again!!