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Filters of Flowers Lesson Plan

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Lesson Plan #: AELP-ARA0204
Submitted by: Angela Tabone
Email: ARTabone@aol.com
School/University/Affiliation: University of North Florida
Endorsed by: Dr. Michael Smith
             University of North Florida
Date: October 11, 2002

Grade Level: 2, 3, 4, 5


  • Arts/Visual Arts
  • Arts/Process Skills

Duration: Two 45-minute sessions

Description: Students use coffee filters and watercolors to create a collage of flowers.

Goals: Sunshine State Standards (Florida) :

  • Visual Arts – VA.A.1.1.2: uses art materials and tools to develop basic processes and motor skills, in a safe and responsible manner.


  • Given four coffee filters and watercolors (red, yellow, and blue), students will create a collage of flowers containing both primary and secondary colors.
  • Students will be able to create a collage that shows completeness, effort, originality/creativity, spatial values, quality, and neatness.
  • Materials:

    • portraits of flowers (see Internet sites below)
    • white coffee filters
    • markers
    • watercolors (red, blue, yellow)
    • color palate
    • water
    • water pot
    • white construction paper (large sheets)
    • scissors
    • glue/water mixture (50/50)
    • sponge brush
    • Filter Sketch
    • Rubric
    • Handouts in .pdf format; requires free Adobe Acrobat Reader.

      Click the icon to obtain the free Reader.


  • primary colors – red, yellow, and blue
  • secondary colors – Colors created by mixing two primary colors.
  • collage – An artistic composition of materials and objects pasted over a surface, often with unifying lines and color.
  • overlapping – To lie or extend over and cover part of.
  • Procedure:
    Discuss the paintings by Hans Hofmann and Odilon Redon (see Internet sites below). Describe the colors the artists used. Explain why new colors are created when two or more colors blend. Talk about flowers (their different shapes, colors, and how bouquets really look). Explain that many times you cannot see all the flowers in a bouquet because they are usually overlapping.

    Hand out 4-8 coffee filters and one large sheet of white construction paper to each child. Students should also get out their watercolors. Students will use the primary colors (red, yellow, and blue) to mix four new colors on a clean color palate. Students then use these colors to paint the coffee filters. Students may paint more than one color on a filter.

    The coffee filters will need to dry. (Use a blow dryer to dry them more quickly.) Be sure the whole filter is dry or the colors may bleed onto each other. Once the filters are dry, they can be folded into quarters (The quarters are exact because the filter is a radial object.) Cut out the petals (see Filter Sketch in Materials ).

    Then use a water/glue solution and the sponge brush to mount the flowers on the page. Have the children paint a vase, stems, leaves, and background with additional colors of their digression. Make sure the students sign their paintings!

    Assessment: Use the Rubric (see Materials ) to evaluate whether or not students achieved the objectives for the assignment. The depth cue of interposition was reviewed because they applied it to their painting. Useful Internet Resources:
    * Hofmann, Hans (1959). Smaragd, Red, and Germinating Yellow

    * Redon, Odilon (1958). Flowers in a Chinese Vase

    * Artcyclopedia – The Fine Art Search Engine

    * Sunshine State Standards

    * In Tech 200 Forum – Browse the Sunshine State Standards

    Special Comments: Teachers should be aware that the printing industry uses the primary colors of magenta, cyan, and yellow.