This is a great lesson for the last couple of weeks before school lets out for Christmas vacation. It involves only paper, a hole punch, scissor and glue sticks. Very little prep but yet still results in gorgeous artwork- my kind of lesson for right before the holidays when we're all tired!
I showed my Grade 5 students some examples of Polish wycinanki. These folk paper cutouts were used in the 1800's by Polish peasants to decorate their houses. It was a cheap craft for them as it only involved scissors and any type of paper. The cutouts are symmetrical with nature designs and geometric shapes and are also used for occasions such as Christmas. They are also sometimes layered (different coloured cutouts placed one on top of another) to make a more intricate design.
We did trees in the Kurpie tradition: these are from the Kurpie region of east-central Poland are single coloured, often black or red, and cut from a piece of paper that is folded once or several times, making the image symmetrical.
You can see our Lowicz style (colourful layers) Christmas trees project I
did a couple of years ago HERE.
Grade 5 students folded a white sheet of 9 x 12" white paper in half and sketched out half an evergreen tree. I give students the option of making a decorated Christmas tree (adding a star, Christmas balls, etc) if they celebrate Christmas (not all of our students do). I show them on chart paper how an evergreen tree starts out narrow at the top and gets progressively wider towards the bottom. They also include a hill of some sort and can add birds or something else as well for a challenge. Then they cut it out- this is VERY good practice in intricate cutting skills! Then, using a single hole punch, they can add circle details.
Once carefully unfolded, they glue stick it to 9 x 12" black paper.
For final sparkly decoration, I used white glue and silver glitter to add a border.