Graphs, Poetry, and a Splash of Color
By Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, August 30, 2006
- Elementary School
- Language Arts
- respond to writing prompts
- conduct research
- create a bar graph
- write a poem
- create a drawing
- create an oral presentation
- Internet websites
- computer with Internet access
- construction or drawing paper
- crayons, markers, pencils
Building Background Activity One: My FavoritesThe purpose of this activity is to activate students' background knowledge on the topic of color. 1. Ask your students to respond to the following writing prompts:
What is your favorite color? Why?
Describe how this color makes you feel.
Draw an object that contains your favorite color.
Activity Two: Class FavoritesThe purpose of this activity is to help students to create a bar graph using real world data. 1. Tell the students that they are going to collect data and create a bar graph. Teacher Note: Further information about bar graphs can be found at the following website: http://www.mcwdn.org/Graphs/BarGraph.html 2. Divide the class into small groups. Ask each group to record a list of every color of the clothing that the students in the group are wearing. Ask each group to create a bar graph using the color data. If you have access to multiple computers, you may wish to use the following website which allows students to create an online bar graph: http://nces.ed.gov/nceskids/createagraph/index.asp?ID=0731417E9F45FDA09 3. Ask each group to present its bar graph to the class. 4. Compile the individual group data, and, as a class, create a class color bar graph.
Steps for Learning Activity One: Color Poetry
The purpose of this activity is to encourage students to explore their individual responses to color.
1. Ask your students to explore the HGTV website at
This website contains an array of colors. As the user rolls the mouse over each color, a word describing the emotional and intellectual qualities related to that color appears on the screen. Examples include courageous, conservative, warmth, humorous and generous.
After the students have explored the varied colors, ask them to write a poem about color. Tell the students that they may use the words they explored on this website as inspiration. Ask the students to illustrate their poems. Encourage the students' creativity.
2. Have the students share their poetry with their classmates. Post the students' work for others in the school and community to view.