ART LESSON PLAN
TITLE OF LESSON: Tribute to Martin Luther King
5 Reflecting Upon and Assessing the Characteristics and Merits of
1 The student establishes and evaluates criteria for interpreting
2 The student implements criteria for assessing art.
Acrylic paint on canvas or canvas board
Students are encouraged to use a variety of acrylic techniques on canvas to convey a
message that is a tribute to Martin Luther King.
1. Students will experiment with the properties of transparent acrylic paint on altered
surfaces to create visually interesting textures and patterns.
2. Students will research the life of Martin Luther King and incorporate into their painting a
quote or slogan relevant to the Civil Rights Movement or King’s life in general.
3. Students will purposefully design with formal elements, making sure that their canvas has
no recognizable symbols or subject matter.
4. The student will create a rubric for assessing the formal qualities of the finished painting,
as well as the interpretation of them. The class as a whole can arrive at a suitable rubric
for judging all works created for this assignment, through discussion and brainstorming.
Given the criteria for successfully creating the painting, the student will then establish a
rubric that includes not only formal aspects (use of color, balance, etc.) but also includes
opportunity for interpretation of how the various elements and principles work together to
establish mood and meaning.
MATERIALS AND RESOURCES:
Video: A Survey of Acrylic Techniques with Russell Woody
Canvas or canvas board Acrylic paints, mediums
Bristle brushes, water containers
An assortment of textured fabric scraps, such as nylon netting, burlap, lace
Pearlescent powders (optional)
Masking tape Paper towels Sponges
glazing medium transparency masking
Students at Paola High School use a new canvas board for this painting project. It is a creative
experiment with acrylic glazing technique.
They use their imagination and problem-solving skills to stretch the possibilities!
The painting incorporates masked areas of lettering (a short message that expresses in a very
general way a tribute to MLK). Some suggestions are given: “I have a dream”/ Tolerance/End
Hate/Kindness/Acceptance/Love Thy Neighbor/ etc. The lettering is “taped” and painted over
with subsequent layers of paint.
All paint is applied to the canvas in transparent or semi-transparent layers (i.e. nothing opaque).
Students use any of the following: matte medium (flat and non-shiny), gloss medium (high gloss),
retarding medium (extends drying time), and matte varnish (for a final layer of non-shiny
protection), pearlescent powders. They do not have to use all of these!
Their canvas does not have recognizable subject matter, only the lettering/words.
Students include a border of some type by taping in the early layers, using masking tape for clean
edges where needed.
They layer 5-6 colors everywhere, at least! The more transparent the layers, the more intense
their colors become. They can use more than 5-6 layers!
They do their best to use their imagination and get involved in the creative process.
For self-evaluation, the class creates one rubric to be used by all. It addresses the items above,
and includes a way to evaluate the mood or meaning.
Types of texture with fabrics: netting, burlap, nubby fabrics that will leave an impression in wet
paint. Students can also texture with a sea sponge. Keep textures muted by using them in the
first few layers. Tone them down by layering over them.