Teach Place Value with Kandinsky

Here's a great arts integration lesson plan for teaching place value.

Place Value with Kandinksy | An Arts Integrated Lesson | FREE Resource Download | Party in the Art Room #artsintegration #artintegration

Analyzing the Work of Art

Students analyze Kandinsky's Color Study: Squares with Concentric Circles, which is commonly known as Kandinsky's Circles. 

teach place value with kandinsky's circles

Jumping In is a great method to use with students to help them analyze the work. They pretend to jump in and imagine what they would experience using their five senses. 

From this activity, it is best to steer a class discussion in the direction of line, shape, and color. 

When a student says something like, "I smell something hot," as their response to the Jumping In exercise, I will ask them why. It is so important to always have students justify their claims about artwork. The student might say, "Because there is a square full of orange, red, and yellow circles on the bottom. Those colors make me think of hot sauce." Then, I will ask the student to think about what kinds of colors those are, and if they don't know, I will tell them those are warm colors. I will help them make the connection to how warm colors make us think of things that are hot. 

Students will apply these concepts of color theory as they work on their own pieces. 

Place Value

Students will represent place value concepts in their artwork. So, they will need to determine what numbers they will use and how to represent those before they start the artistic process.

Have them write down four numbers with as many digits as you decide to be appropriate. The number of digits will correspond to the number of columns in their work. The value of the digits will correspond to how many circles are used in each square in each row. 

Let's say a student chose 4,351 as their first number. The top row of their artwork would have 4 circles in the first column, which represents the thousands place. There would be 3 circles in the second column, which represents the hundreds place, and so forth. 

The next row would represent another four-digit number. However, if students are working with three-digit numbers, there would only be three columns, etc. 

Creating the Artwork

kandinsky arts integration math

There is more than one way to create this artwork. The examples here have been created with paper and crayon. (There are lots of arts integration lessons based on Kandinsky's other works as well.)

These students made their own artistic decisions about how to place the circles inside each square. As you can see, not all students chose concentric circles. 

I want to help get you started with this lesson. So, for a limited time, I'm giving away my Arts Integration with  Kandinsky Resource Bundle for FREE. This Resource Bundle includes:

  • Kandinsky Materials Checklist Download
  • Kandinsky Decimals Worksheet Download
  • Kandinsky Haiku Assessment Checklist
  • AND, Kandinsky Dance Curves Resource List.

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 I hope you will give this lesson a try. Let me know how it goes.

Ready for More?

teach place value with kandinsky's circles

My new eBook, Arts Integration Lessons Featuring the Work of Wassily Kandinsky, includes 

  • tips and tricks for implementing this lesson
  • math computation sheet for place value 
  • extension activities for place value and number concepts
  • details for working with the art materials
  • assessment options
  • AND, more arts integration lessons featuring Kandinsky.

kandinsky arts integration math

kandinsky arts integration math

kandinsky arts integration math

teach place value with kandinsky's circles

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