the TEXTURE of noise

Multisensory Motivation - related links: - Art Education HOME
Also see: Blind Contour Drawing (grades 3 to 6)
using the same big bear as a model
They also had similar warm-ups for line and texture before they did their drawings.

blank squares

by Marvin Bartel
© 2011, author bio, contact

mp3 sound files: Draw four squares like this on a piece of paper. Then draw the texture of each noise you hear as you play the TEXTURE of NOISES here. Use your imagination. You cannot do it wrong. TAB back here to start each new noise.


When you click a noise file, it will open another tab. Come back here by clicking the previous tab.


This large stuffed bear was the inspiration for this drawing. Ist and 2nd grade students were asked to imagine themselves playing in their room with Ralph, the bear.

Third, 4th, 5th, and 6th grade students made blind contour drawings of he bear. They had the same warm-ups and as time allowed they also added texture.



Before the class began their drawings, the warm-ups included making lines that were dark medium and light.

To motivate for more awareness of texture in their drawings, the children were each invited to give the bear a hug. Also, the warm-ups also included some sounds that I made with boxes and cans that rattled, but it was done so the children could not see what I was holding. I asked them to draw textures to represent the sounds that I made. On the right you can see Renee's warm-up lines and the textures she drew while listening to the noises that I made for the class. I was hiding the noise makers in big box so they would not think I wanted them to draw the boxes and cans that I used as noise makers.

Links to .mp3 files with similar sounds are above the picture above.

While drawing, the children were asked if they remembered how to make different kinds of lines and different kinds of textures. I asked them questions what their favorite things were in their rooms. I do not show examples and I do not draw in front of them to teach. I want them to use their own memories, imaginations, observations, eyes, ears and hands to materialize the work. If I show them the answers, how will they learn to solve the problems? I motivate them with warm-up rituals and open questions that make them aware of what they can see, hear, remember, imagine, and do. Good questions make passive knowledge into active knowledge. The child persists longer. The pictures become richer. Good questioning improves thinking. Good questioning helps them learn to start asking themselves questions as they work. They become self-learners and we need to teach less while they learn more.


"School should allow a lot to be learned, that is to say that it should teach little ...
In the end, all education is self-education.”

-- Joseph Albers
-artist and art educator

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