Is Piet Mondrian a great artist or what?!  He is everywhere.

I love his work because it makes me think, “I can do that!” but there are so many subtle things associated with his work that makes me rethink him over and over again.  His artwork is perfect for young children: lines, squares, primary colors.  His work also gives a springboard for mixing primary colors and experimenting with lines and shapes.Every year, I show this video:

Piet Mondrian for Kids

Then I introduce the big rulers.  We start off by making shapes using a crayon.  Then we move on to the tempera cakes.  I find these better to work with for this activity.  My littles just can’t seem to understand the importance of cleaning brushes in between colors so by the day’s end, my liquid tempera is mussed up.  I can give each student their own dry tempera cake palette and this holds up much better in the neatness category.

For the first day, I tell the students they can only use blue, yellow, red, black and white. The only colors they can mix is black and white because that is what Piet Mondrian did.  But on the second day, I let the students mix colors. I love watching them figure out how different colors are made.

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They look awesome hung up collectively.

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