Aw, Eric Carle, will we ever have enough of his art?
A sunny copy of his work inspired the children to want to create their own Eric Carle paper.
Thus began one of the most rewarding art projects I have ever participated in. We spent days creating every imaginable method of producing interesting art on paper.

The children experimented with


crayons over water colour,

crayon under water colour,

finger painting designs,

sponge painting gold and bronze over top the water colour,

layering water colours for days,

using great varieties of tools to create a design on their finger painting. 

Sometimes, I think I forget that the process is so much more powerful than the product! This process was truly grand!


At times it felt like we were overcome with discovering new methods, teaching each other the joys of our latest discovery. When at last we had to stop for Christmas holidays (otherwise we might never have satisfied this need to create), we spread out all our designs and were over whelmed with the sheer joy of painting!

          Katie making paper choices

We became so excited that we imported a grade 11 student to teach us how to draw Eric Carle’s 8 point star (as I could not figure it out. Isn’t great to not have to know everything?)

 Allysha and Tea creating stars

Austin making artist’s choices

After several months, we re-visited the papers we had created. I did this on propose as often students of this age are not keen to cut up their art.

The children created animals using their understanding of proportion, drawing skills, and their observations of a week at Zoo School in January.

We had already begun creating animals as a result of this week’s experience, so we had many skills to “draw” from.


As one child said,” If he was here to see this, Eric Care would be very proud of us!”

Michael's Elephant

Our background problem (“Now what do we do? This is a boring background?” lament led us to the grade 4’s and 5’s who suggested that we either needed a sharp contrast with the detailed animals or plain watercolour background. The paper we had used for our backing wouldn’t hold watercolour so one of my students suggested we use felt, as it had been successful with our earlier project of “Ways of seeing Animals”. Thus was born the idea of stripes rather than checks, as it is “Math Week” and we should include some math (yet another student suggestion).

And she was right! He would be proud! I truly believe that this study has not finished. Not one wee piece of our art paper has been thrown into re-cycle! They have tubs of paper bits left over for their next project!

 Rebecca’s bush baby