Yarn Painting Lesson Plan

Instructor: Bethany Calderwood

Bethany has taught special education in grades PK-5 and has a master's degree in special education.

This multi-age lesson plan teaches the background of Huichol yarn paintings then guides students through the steps of creating their own yarn paintings.

Lesson Objectives

  • tell about the background of Huichol yarn paintings.
  • create a yarn painting.


  • 30 - 60 minutes (one or two class periods)

Curriculum Standards

Please note that each state has different standards for art. Please consult your state's standards to ensure proper alignment.

The activities in this lesson can be adjusted to suit a variety of age groups.

Lesson Instruction


  • Cardstock or cardboard
  • Glue
  • Toothpicks
  • Wax paper
  • Heavy books for weights
  • Scissors
  • Paper towels
  • Markers or pencils
  • A few different articles on Huichol yarn painting
  • Examples of yarn paintings


  • Prior to class, gather a few different articles on Huichol yarn painting.
  • Break students into groups. Give each group a different article to read. Groups should highlight key points in their articles.
  • Each group should share with the class three important facts about yarn painting that they learned from their article.
  • After the groups share, fill in any relevant background information they missed.
  • Show students pictures of professional examples of yarn painting as well as a few simpler examples.


  • Have the tools needed for the project ready in a box at the front of the classroom. (cardboard, toothpick, wax paper, glue, scissors, markers, yarn, paper towel)
  • Have a volunteer come and pick a tool from the box. The volunteer should guess what the tool will be used for during the yarn painting project. Repeat until all the tools are laid out.
  • Once you have clarified the use of the different tools, have students assist in distributing the materials to all students.



  • Draw a few simple shapes on the board to give students ideas for their paintings.
  • Using a black marker, students should draw an outline of their shape on their cardboard. Assist students in choosing something basic for their first project.
  • Students might want to use a different color to draw lines inside their outline to help them see where they will glue their yarn when they fill in.
  • Demonstrate the technique for gluing the yarn to the outline, then assist students as they outline their paintings.

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