How does math help me understand and connect with different art forms?
Students will explore geometric and art elements and examine them within different art forms before creating their own artwork.
Finding the Math in Art (DOCX  202 KB)
Finding the Math in Art (PDF  289 KB)
Arts Education  Mathematics  

Grade 4 


Grade 5 


Grade 6 


Arts Education  Mathematics  

Grade 4 


Grade 5 


Grade 6 


Share a video of Rangoli art being created. Pause when the art is complete, and ask students to look at the art and share their responses to these questions with the class:
Explain to students that Rangoli is a cultural art form originating in India. Have students brainstorm questions about Rangoli, which may include what it is used for, how it’s created, and so on.
Have students partner up (or form small groups) and spend some time researching Rangoli art. Each partnership/group should report back on one of their questions and what they learned.
Provide images of paintings by Wassily Kandinsky (Russian abstract artist) and the example of Rangoli art (from Step 1). Have students study the images individually before dividing into small groups to answer the following questions:
Explain that both abstract art (like Kandinsky’s) and Rangoli art use rays, line segments and lines to form the design. Divide students into groups and have them complete the Defining Lines worksheet
Review the Defining Lines worksheet answers/definitions as a class:
Have students create small drawings made up of lines, rays and line segments. Each drawing should have at least one example of each. Have students exchange drawings and label the elements. After they have finished, they can discuss and check their accuracy.
Hand out the Line Up worksheet and have students complete it individually. After they’ve completed the worksheet, form students into small groups to compare answers and check their understanding.
Then discuss the activity as a whole class, with questions such as:
ANSWER KEY: Line=ocean; Vertical line=forest; Expressive lines=mandala (flower); Diagonal lines=lightning storm; Constructive or directional lines=line pattern
Begin a ThinkPairShare discussion, where students will first think about the questions individually (for a few minutes), then pair up with a classmate to finalize answers before sharing with the class. In pairs, have them answer the following questions:
Explain parallel lines/segments to the class: Parallel lines are lines that never meet. Two lines are parallel if they never intersect each other at any point. Parallel lines are indicated using the notation “II.”
Ask students to look around the room. What parallel lines do they see? Have students form parallel lines by lining up. What makes them parallel? How do they know?
Have students complete the Parallel Segments worksheet.
Explain angles to the class: Two rays with a common endpoint form what is called an angle. The rays are the sides or arms of the angle in the middle. For example, this angle could be called angle ABC or angle CBA. Because there can be no confusion with other angles, this angle could also be called angle B. Angles can be classified as acute, obtuse, right or straight.
Discuss in pairs:
To wrap up the lesson, students will create their own work of art that includes the elements that they learned and practised in this unit. They may express their learning in the form of a painting, drawing, sculpture, mosaic or any other type of art. Students will make a draft sketch or blueprint that will demonstrate the required mathematics, and a final product that will be the art piece or a fullcolour image – for example, a painting or mosaic.
The following elements must be clearly indicated in the draft and listed on a separate sheet of paper, including proper mathematical names; they must also be visible in the final products, but without the labels:
The final product must have a title and a brief written description of what the artwork represents. In the description, students must explain how at least three of the geometric elements relate to what is being represented in the artwork.
Have students complete a gallery walk of all the final projects, using Two Stars and a Wish – writing two stars (things they like) and a wish (what could be improved) on sticky notes for three of the projects.
Formative: Students can be assessed on their knowledge of the mathematical concepts on each of the worksheets. You may choose to include a reflection after each assignment to further align with the competencies.
Summative: Cocreate a rubric with the class to evaluate their final project. This may include things like