A few months ago, I got an awesome Facebook message from a reader, Kim, who used one of my resources in such an excellent and creative way. I would like to share what she did with my post and printable 36 Views of Mount Fuji by Hokusai.
Kim runs a small Montessori homeschool preschool for ages 3-5. They had been studying Japan and the artist Hokusai when she came across my 36 Views of Mount Fuji post, and I love how she integrated it into their studies. I did the activity she came up with with my 3 and 5 year old last week, and it went really well!
Although both Kim and I did this with young kids, the below lesson would work probably all the way up to upper elementary.
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Japanese Woodblock Prints Lesson
1. Print the pictures from the post, and laminate if possible (optional, I got a laminator for Christmas so I laminate everything). Here is a new printable with 4 images per page so it is easier to print!
2. Lay out the cards in rows and play the “Find Mt. Fuji Game.” Have students find Mount Fuji in all of the pictures. My girls thought this was great fun! We also looked at the real picture of Mount Fuji taken by my sister who is currently living in Japan (also in the original post). (I found all 36 to be a bit much. You could probably print only half of these and be fine.)
3. Lay out the cards again and have the children tell you the similarities and differences using the discussion questions from the post as a guide. Kim did this as an individual work with each child, but I did it with both of my girls at the same time having them take turns (so my 5yo wouldn’t shut out the 3yo!). Have the children notice the colors, form, peacefulness, etc. We also picked out 3-4 favorites each to take with us to the table for the rest of the activity.
4. Give each child a styrofoam meat tray, styrofoam plate with the rim cut off, or a foam printing sheet, and have each child scratch a picture into the surface. The only requirement is that they have to include Mt. Fuji in their picture!
5. Make prints! Kim used ink pads in muted shades of orange, green, and blue. I used printing ink and brayers (rollers) with black printing ink. I wanted to use blue mimic the main color in the Hokusai prints, but I only had black on hand. Use tips from the “Foam Printing” section of my block printing post for help with this activity.
My daughter is currently obsessed with those collector toy videos on YouTube, so she wanted to make a video demonstrating the process. Of course, she didn’t use any of the words we talked about like printmaking and ink, but it’s adorable. 🙂
This was such a fun activity for my kids and I. Thanks for the idea Kim! 🙂
Do you have a lesson based on one of my resources that you’d like to share with Art Class Curator readers? Please share in the comments or send me a message, and you might be featured on the blog!