Grade: Elementary
Subject: Art

#2687. Turning It Around

Art, level: Elementary
Posted Sun Sep 8 21:33:00 PDT 2002 by Michael Calderone (
Drama Instructor, New York City
Materials Required: See lesson plan
Activity Time: One hour
Concepts Taught: September 11th Remembrance

"Turning It Around"
Art Activity to Commemorate September 11th

Objective: To have students discuss their feelings about September 11th, 2001 and the one year anniversary of the disaster in an activity that helps them see positive outcomes of the tragedy.

Outcome: The class creates a "living" representation of the Twin Towers that turns into an American flag.

Supplies Needed: for a class of 54 students
9 sheets of blue construction paper
30 sheets of red construction paper
15 sheets of white construction paper
54 sheets of grey construction paper

Discussion & Activity: for 6 groups of 9 students
1)Each Advisory Group gets 9 pieces of grey paper; AND either 9 pieces of blue paper (one group), or 6 red and 3 white paper (five groups).
2)Each student will get one piece of grey paper and one piece of either red, white, or blue paper.
3)Separately, have each Advisory Group discuss what they remember about September 11th, 2001.
a)What scared you about that day?
b)What did you do when you heard what happened?
c)What did your family do?
d)What made you proud that day?
e)Why were certain people called heroes?
f)How did Sept. 11th make you grateful?
g)What did you learn from Sept. 11th?
4)On one side of her grey paper, have each student draw images or write her memories of the sad events of that day. (Encourage group to draw in "portrait layout.")
5)On one side of her patriotic colored paper, have each student draw images or write her memories of the proud or heroic moments of that day. (Again, encourage group to draw in "portrait layout.")
6)When finished, have each student staple her two drawings together, back to back and top to bottom. (i.e. if she is looking at one picture, the picture behind will be up-side-down.)
7)Arrange all of the groups in a large space. Equally distribute the groups in two parallel columns. Put the "blue" group in the upper-left corner of the space and be sure each individual column of students alternates between "red" and "white" drawings ultimately creating an American flag.
8) Have all students initally hold up the "grey" side of their papers. The effect from above should be that of the Twin Towers.
9)On the cue "Turn it around!" have the students flip the pictures to create the American flag. 10) Take a photo from above of each.
11) Display all of the drawings on a large wall in the image of the flag.