WE ARE ALL CONNECTED – Species at Risk, Patterns

Students create a mixed media artwork about an at-risk species using black shapes on a white background. They paint each black shape with small, beadlike circles in a style similar to that of Métis artist Christi Belcourt.

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WE ARE ALL CONNECTED – Species at Risk, Patterns


  • Crayola Construction Paper - Black
  • Crayola Scissors
  • Crayola Glue Sticks
  • Crayola Round Paintbrushes - 4 Count
  • Crayola Acrylic Paint - 6 Count
  • Crayola Watercolour Pencils - 12 Count
  • Crayola Coloured Pencils - 24 Count
  • Water Containers
  • Paper Towels
  • Pencils
  • Drawing Paper - 30.5 cm x 45.7 cm (12" x 18")


Step 1
  1. Brainstorm a variety of species at risk.
  2. Use coloured pencil to draw plants and animals that may be of special concern, threatened, or endangered.
  3. Include the names of the different species in your drawing.
  4. Choose one species to focus your artwork on.
Step 2
  1. Use black construction paper to cut out the shape of the endangered species or species at-risk that you have chosen for your focal point.
  2. Glue this shape onto the centre of a large piece of white drawing paper.
  3. Cut out a variety of geometric and organic shapes and place the shapes in a circular pattern around the shape in the centre.
  4. When the pattern is complete use a glue stick to secure the shapes.
Step 3
  1. Reflect on the variety of images of Traditional Cree and Ojibwe beadwork.
  2. Examine examples of beadwork, notice the gradation of colours from light to dark, or dark to light.
  3. Imagine you are creating a beaded artwork.
  4. What colours would you choose?
  5. Use acrylic paints and a very fine paint brush to create small beadlike circles on the black shapes.
  6. Create patterns with the colours and beadlike circles.
  7. Fill in all the black shapes with coloured patterns.
Step 4
  1. Use watercolour pencils to write the name of the endangered, threatened, extirpated, of special concern, or at risk species on the artwork.
  2. Gently paint into the watercolour pencil with water to soften the lettering.
  • Subjects:

    • Language Arts,

    • Science,

    • Visual Arts,

    • First Nations, Metis, Inuit

  • Grades:

    • Grade 3,

    • Grade 4,

    • Grade 5,

    • Grade 6,

    • Grade 7,

    • Grade 8

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