1. Introduction
  2. Teach It 
  3. Dig Deeper


This segment discusses various strategies that writers and artists use to organize their pieces. It also points out how the elements of a piece of art are similar to the elements of a piece of writing.

Time: 45-50 minute period


  • Students will develop a series of paragraphs to describe a piece of art.
  • Students will organize and present information logically.

Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts:

  • R.CCR.5 Analyze the structure of texts, including how specific sentences, paragraphs, and larger portions of the text (e.g. a section, chapter, scene, or stanza) relate to each other and the whole.
  • W.CCR.4 Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
  • W.CCR.5 Develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach.
  • W.CCR.6 Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and to interact and collaborate with others.

Maine Learning Results Visual and Performing Arts Standards:

  • E2 The Arts and Other Disciplines

Segment Vocabulary:

Word Wall

Teach It

Prior to viewing:

Note: This activity will work best if the materials are prepared in advance and distributed to students. Print copies of a painting, lyrics of a song, and a short newspaper article (one copy of each item for each small group). Cut the copies into several pieces.
Divide students into small groups and distribute the cut-up pieces. Ask them to assemble the pieces.
After a few minutes, tell students that the activity is similar to having to organize a writing piece or creating a piece of art.  As in this activity, writers and artists have to start with sorting out the ideas (or pieces) and then putting them into groups or sequences that make the most sense to convey the idea or story.

Explain to students that they are going to watch a segment about how artists and writers organize their work. Provide students with the following chart and have them complete the painting equivalent of the writing term as they watch the segment.

Link to chart

a single worda single brushstroke
a sentence 
a paragraph 
a chapter 

Writing Through Art Activity:

Ask students to revisit the sentences they constructed after watching the previous segment. Tell them to sort their sentences into categories. For example, which sentences might fit into an introduction? Which sentences describe a particular part of the image? Which sentences describe the same idea?

After students sort their sentences into categories, ask them to begin turning the related sentences into paragraphs. Students may need to add sentences to reach a three sentence minimum per paragraph. Students should make necessary adjustments to sentences so that each paragraph flows into the next. They should insert necessary transition words or make other changes to the sentences to create a logical sequence.

Have students complete an Exit Slip with the following questions:
1. Why should organization be important to a writer?
2.  Why should organization be important to an artist?

LINK to Exit slip

Dig Deeper

Note: If students created a Venn Diagram to compare and contrast art and writing in the first segment, revisit the diagram and make any necessary additions or corrections based on this segment. Students could add the writing/painting equivalencies they noted while watching the segment, for example.

Link to teacher inspired lessons: