First Grade is Full of Cool Cats

Before vacation, several large panels of wood were constructed between the elementary wing and main school building.  They are there to block off the latest construction project at our school – a new patio and play structure. They are white and just screaming for someone to paint all over them.  I knew I wanted to create a mural with my students, but I didn’t know how to introduce the concept.

We needed to do a collaborative project.

I thought it would be fun to teach my first grade how to draw kitty cats.  I saw this idea somewhere on Google (sorry for not writing this source down), plus my aunt was a huge Laurel Birch fan.  We drew very simple cats on 11 x 17 pieces of paper. Then we used oil pastels to go over our pencil lines and color the cats.

Then we cut them out.  I laid out large pieces of black butcher paper and told them I was going to place their cats all over it.  I wanted them to make fence posts and decorate the sky.  The rest was up to them.  Granted, not so much of a collaboration compared to what it could have been, but it was a start.

The results were hung in the hallway, down low, so all my little ones could see their work. All the students made sure to point out their cat, but I hope they also see how cute they all look together, as a group.



People asked if it was based on “Pete the Cat.”  No, it wasn’t, but I will make sure to include Pete in next year’s lesson!  I love weaving children’s literature into my art lessons.


Author: Sonia Chapman

I am an art teacher, living in the Middle East, following my passion for art, teaching little children about the finer things in life, and loving every bit of it.

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