Preparing for Vincent Van Gogh lesson

The teacher asked me to make a short lesson based on Vincent Van Gogh as she wanted them to do the sunflower paintings and I suggested it after being inspired by the student teacher we had. I thought that I may as well contribute a bit more to the lessons but I also don’t want to be stepping in too much as I feel I could be trying to take over the teacher’s role…i’m not sure if that makes sense or not but I didn’t want to go over my boundary so that’s why I asked her if she wanted me to gather some information for the class.

I was debating about whether or not to make a powerpoint because I remember that when the student teacher had one for ST Patricks’ Day they weren’t really that into it and I also didn’t want to make it full of text especially when these kids are only 5/6. I did make a start to one but as I continued with my research on Vincent Van Gogh I decided to change my plan. Below is just a screenshot of the powerpoint I started but stopped;


I found multiple videos which I thought were much more interesting for the kids than a boring presentation which i’ll talk about later.

I had a look at what sort of things the kids should be aiming for in an Art lesson by looking at the CCEA website again. *Important note* To begin with I thought that P2 was considered Key Stage 1 but it is actually considered foundation stage, they move onto key stage 1 in P3. I was originally looking at the wrong key stage so after realising I wasn’t looking at right thing I went onto look at the foundation Art section of the CCEA website. They have separate microsite for the Arts which includes; Art, Drama and Music. I will only be looking at the Art section.


Front Page of Foundation Stage

In the gallery section of the website it contained 3 videos of an example lesson which showed the teacher with only a small group of 4 children drawing. (below)


In the activities section they give examples for each time of art and what teachers can do in art lessons.

Among the variety of practices within the disciplines of Art and Design, educators find some common approaches to be particularly useful in encouraging pupils’ development. These are covered here under the headings:

  • Investigating and Responding to a Stimulus

  • Using the Visual Elements Evaluating (Assessment for Learning)

  • Appreciating the work of Artists, Designers, Crafts Workers

Here are the learning intentions that CCEA give on the website for art:


  • investigate the world around us
  • experiment and explore the properties of materials
  • develop visual, tactile and spatial abilities
  • develop manipulative skills in order to control materials and make decisions regarding their use
  • use  imagination
  • communicate feelings
  • solve problems
  • make choices
  • be creative
  • talk about our work
  • see what digital images can do

Screenshot of the examples they give of activities Teachers can do in class to cover the learning intentions:



The videos I found for the P2s to watch

The first video I found was through the BBC bitesize website ( , I thought that going through the bitesize website would be a good idea because I remember the teachers using it for GCSE Art and I thought they might have something on Van Gogh for kids and they did!!

The video has an actor portraying Vincent Van Gogh, it’s a bit dated but it was still better than a powerpoint! The actor in the video talks about the different periods of Vincent’s life and also the types of colours he used and why he used those. The video clip is actually from a TV series in 1995, Watch: Art – Growing things. My favourite part about the video was how at the end of the video he said that we’re all artists and I thought that would be a key thing for the kids to know. A lot of people wouldn’t consider themselves Artists but we technically all are if we create some kind of Art. I just wanted it to be something that would encourage them all in class for when they get the chance to do their paintings with me.

Below is two screenshots showing what I explained above:

Screenshot 2017-07-01 19.02.21Screenshot 2017-07-01 19.02.30

I then decided to have a look around Youtube for other cool videos similar to the ones that the teacher has shown before and I found this animated short which is actually a series which focuses on a little girl (Mati) and her friend (Dada), meeting famous Artists. (shown below in the screenshot is just an example of the other videos available on the Youtube channel Art with Mati & Dada : )


I felt like this would be even better than the BBC video because it was much brighter and was more like cartoon than a boring video. Plus it was aimed at kids so it was definitely more suitable. I might make another post on this channel in general because I think it’s a fun and cool way to get kids into Art and learning about the older Artists in a fun and exciting way.

Book that the children were actually read before we done the paintings (this is just a person reading it out loud but we did not use this, the teacher read it to them):

The book is about a girl who’s visiting a museum when the sunflowers …****


Art With Mati & Dada. (2015). Art With Mati & Dada – VanGogh | Kids Animated Short Stories in English. [Online Video]. 15 October 2015. Available from: [Accessed: 30 March 2017].

BBC Bitesize KS1.(1995).  Vincent Van Gogh. [Online Video]. 10 May 1995. Available from: [Accessed: 30 March 2017].

Tami Dunn. (2016). Tami Reads “Katie and the Sunflowers” By: James Mayhew. [Online Video]. 10 August 2016. Available from: [Accessed: 30 March 2017].

Websites I was going to use for the presentation:

Website that I looked at to see how other teachers got kids to create their own versions of the sunflowers:


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