Zentangle Jungle

This school year, my elementary school's theme is Safari.  As an opening activity, I decided to introduce my Gifted and Talented students to Sandy Steen Bartholomew's book, Zentangle for Kidz.  As I mentioned in my review on Amazon, I believe there are many educational benefits that may come from working on tangles.

I began the class by conducting a brainstorming activity regarding patterns.  What is a pattern?  Where are patterns found?  In what subjects can they be found?  How are they used?  To make the experience more concrete, we looked at examples of patterns in art, music, poetry, math, nature, etcetera.  Then, I explained that tangles are patterns too.  We examined various examples and discussed how they were executed.

Next, I had them work on a tile as a whole group, as I modeled the process for them.  I taught them how to frame their work, use a string to separate the plane, and how to work the tangles "one stroke at a time."  Finally, I had each of them decorate a leaf by using tangle patterns of their own choosing, except for the 1st graders who needed a little more guidance.  They loved it!

The students glued the tiles to their journals, and I incorporated their original leave designs to our classroom's bulletin board.  Below are pictures of the bulletin board, as well as close-ups of each groups' set of leaves.  I hope you enjoy them as much as my students enjoyed making them.  Blessings!


Click on the link to see comments by Sandy regarding my book review about her book on Amazon and this blog post.