Art & Literacy 

Projects that build knowledge around content-rich literacy topics. 

Learn more by scrolling through the slides above. Click to view full-screen.

“The Art & Literacy Curriculum created by Doodles has led to meaningful, creative artistic thought.  My students are excited and engaged about creating and writing about their art!”
Alyssa Lindstrom

Art Teacher, Rochester Discovery, Rochester, NY


1st Grade: Designing the Zodiac

LEARNING: Student artists are introduced to constellations and their stories from Greek, Native American, and Inca cultures.

CREATING:  Student artists brainstorm their own, original, constellations, complete with an origin myth.

1st Grade: Artist, Explorer, Scientist

LEARNING: Student artists learn about how scientists use drawing in their field research & learn about ornithologist John Audubon.

CREATING: Students create an accurate drawing of an animal and its habitat, then turn the drawing into a series of prints.

2nd Grade: Around the Neighborhood

LEARNING: Student artists study the life & work of the African-American artist Jacob Lawrence, specifically looking at his paintings of Harlem.

CREATING: Students create sketches of their own neighborhood and finish by creating a collage.

3rd Grade: Embracing Challenges

LEARNING: In this project, student artists learn about four different artists who faced mental or physical challenges and turned these challenges’ to their advantage.

CREATING: Student artists complete a series of challenges, ending with a painted sculpture.

3rd Grade: Art & Advocacy

LEARNING: Student artists learn about water problems around the world (pollution, access, and overuse), and look at and analyze ways that graphic designers have brought attention to this issue through their design.

CREATING: Student artists choose an issue that they feel strongly about and design a poster.

4th Grade: Rainforest Creature Marionettes

LEARNING: Student artists look at different defense mechanisms animals have developed to protect themselves, specifically focusing on rainforest creatures.

CREATING:  Student artists brainstorm the ideal creature to live in the rainforest, then create marionette puppets of their creatures.

4th Grade: Me & My Monster

LEARNING: Student artists learn and understand the connection between the visual and written word. In particular, they read and examine poetry, and learn how the concepts of ‘imagery’ & ‘emphasis’ can be explored in both written and visual form.

CREATING:  Student artists brainstorm a monster ‘helper’, describe it through descriptive and/or figurative language and ‘imagery’, create a poem about their monster, & end by altering their poem to enhance the meaning through visual emphasis.

Each (free) project contains 5 lessons aligned to a content-rich literacy topic. The lessons include:

  • Artworks to discuss
  • Video lessons
  • Text sets
  • Supply lists
  • Tier 2 and 3 vocabulary
  • Support in the form of emailed teaching tips and management strategies as educators work through the lessons.

Building the Art & Literacy Curriculum is ongoing, and we will be releasing new projects each school year. Ultimately, each grade will have at least three unique projects.


Always know when we release a new project.

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The Training:

We’ve developed a training program to support educators in implementing the Art & Literacy Curriculum. 

“[This training program has] a lot of video coverage with evidence. It helped me understand the structure and outline of the art program. The excitement on the students’ faces in the video, and their engagement, inspired me.”

Barbara Powell

Classroom Teacher in San Jose, CA

The Topics:


A note: If you see a topic that applies to your curriculum but it is listed under a different grade, please use it! All of our projects are process based and easily adjusted to fit many skill levels. That being said, the text sets and vocabulary are aligned with the grades listed below.

Are you a school or organization looking to implement the Art & Literacy Curriculum with multiple users? Find out more here about how we can support, including private pages and discounted training.  

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