Thursday, December 15, 2011

Norval Morrisseau, AKA Copper Thunderbird Art Lesson for 4th-6th

So, my 4th-6th graders were learning about colonial America, Native Americans and Michigan history - so I introduced them to a contemporary native American artist from our neck of the woods:  Norval Morrisseau!

He was born in Canada, but is a part of the Ojibwe/Chippewa tribe that extends into our beautiful Michigan state.

The kids had some prior knowledge of that which helps peak their interest!  If you are curious about the artist, just google him :)

Basically we looked at his work, I talked about his culture and style of painting, and then they had to:
1) Pick a symbol (plant, insect, animal or abstract) that had meaning to them
2) Create a design in a similar style to Morrisseau
3) Paint using acrylics ** ALTERNATIVE: At another school I am having kids "build" their work using cut construction paper and it is also very effective and stunning!

Here is the work in progress!

P.S.  This school just opened recently, and I have hardly any supplies!  So - I have been EXTRA careful with the acrylic paint by putting small portions into condiment containers with lids (got them from GFS).  So far they have worked wonderfully at keeping them fresh and reusable!


  1. I am blog master of newly created NORVAL MORRISSEAU FOR CHILDREN BLOG located at . I am asking for permission to use images from this post by giving all the credit and appropriate linking to this blog. This newly created platform is dedicated exclusively to inform and inspire Children of the World about Art of Norval Morrisseau a.k.a. Copper Thunderbird. All suggestions are welcome. Sincerely, Ugo Matulic a.k.a. Spirit Walker.

    1. I would be honored - you have my permission! Thank you for sharing your blog, it looks wonderful.