For this unit, I started by gathering books about chameleons from the library. I hung up several pictures of chameleons around the room and I created a packet of visuals with images of chameleons for students to use as reference while practicing in their sketchbooks.
We started learning about chameleons by looking at this video. Then we practiced drawing chameleons in our sketchbooks. Once we had practiced, it was time to draw the chameleon on white paper. I encouraged students to crop and enlarge the chameleon.
After drawing the chameleon on white paper, we used skinny sharpies to draw LOTS of texture. Chameleons are covered in scales so students had to draw the texture. Also, if their chameleon needed to be grasping on to a branch, I encouraged them to draw the branch and outline it with the skinny sharpie.
Once students had everything outlined, we used colored pencils to color the chameleons. Students could make their chameleons as realistic or wild colored as they wanted. I showed them a video of a time lapse of an iguana drawing as an example of how much time and layering it takes to color something hyper realistic with colored pencils.
While students were coloring, I pulled them over to a painting station to paint a frame for the project. Students could choose between green, blue, or gray paper. At the painting station, they could use cool colors to make a design around the edges of the paper.
Today, students chose a background color of 8X10 construction paper and used oil pastels to draw and color the background. It could be a dessert, a leafy jungle, or something else, but the important thing is that they do not draw it with pencil first, as the pencil will make it too small to color with oil pastels....they can draw it with chalk first if they are afraid they will mess up. The chalk is erasable. Which makes it nice.
If anyone did not paint the frame last time, today is the day to paint the frame.