Tying Your Art Lesson to Historical Wonders

     Tying art to literature and real life is a beautiful thing in the classroom. This week my class was all a “buzz” with wonder as we read chapter 33 in The Jewel of Peru.   As the main characters made their get away on a plane, they looked down to see the Nazca Lines. My students were instantly engaged with mystery surrounding these ancient geoglyphs and wanted to know more about them!

     I’m always looking for ways to integrate the subjects because I’ve seen  how effective integration can be in helping students make connections in their learning. Art class this week provided me the perfect opportunity. We have been learning about contour drawing and a study of the Nazca Lines was my hook!  

     The students were enthralled to learn more about the lines and they were eager to try to practice their contour drawings by trying to reproduce the various labyrinth geoglyphs on paper.  Taking it one step further, we then discussed ways we could add color using different mediums  and compare them. They used waxed crayon, marker, and pencil crayon to make comparisons between the effects they could get with each one.Student Contour Drawings Student Contour Drawing of the Nasca LinesNasca Contour

      Expanding upon the lesson, we may explore other mediums and build our contour labyrinths with clay and or paint, which will, once again, provide a basis for comparison.

 This activity  brings together, literature, history and art and helps make the connections between them for students. Try it in your classroom, too! After all, isn’t it our job as educators to model help kids make these connections and foster a love for life-long learning about the incredible world around us?

A great resource for this lesson can be found at: 




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