Third Grade Knocks My Socks Off

This project was done at the beginning of the year, as a way to get the kids into the art room, working together, while we “waited” for more students to arrive from their summer vacations.  It was such a huge success that many students put their finished socks into the art show, and I am planning on doing this activity with more classes and developing it as I go.

The kids came in and took their shoes off.  I took a deep breath and watched them try to trace their partner’s feet.  Some students were able to do this correctly, but others went so close that their feet and legs kind of looked liked twiggy arms.  So, I got down on the ground and quickly traced the feet.

The next step was making sure students concentrated on a theme for their socks.  I did not want the socks to look the same so they had to do two different themes on each sock.  Explaining themes to kids can be a tad tricky so I always end up referencing pop culture and birthday parties.  Once students get that “Frozen” is a theme and “Star Wars” is a theme, we can go into more esoteric references like junk food or candy.  I really didn’t want emojis as a theme so I told them to leave that out. But other than that, they could choose whatever they wanted.

Once themes were chosen, I found online references and made lots of copies of idea sheets.  Here are some of the results:









There is a lot that can be done with this project, including a follow-up reflection to establish why we chose the themes we did.  I did get to see what my students are interested in, from sports, food, and movies, but I didn’t go much more beyond this.  The project could be a great way to help us get to know each other better and see how interests change from one year to the next.

I also need to focus more on the positive and negative space of the socks.  Next year we will discuss how we are going to place our socks on the paper and how the overall composition could look.

My co-worker, Amy, who is our school counselor wants to integrate these socks for “Lots of Socks: World Down Syndrome Day,” which takes place in the Spring.  I think it would be great to hang this artwork piece all over the school to help celebrate this day. So, all in all, this was a great project and I look forward to trying a variation of it next year.




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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