Musical Masterpiece

A. Wills
Multiple Subject Teacher

In this visual arts lesson, learners will express emotion through painting, as elicited by music.

Grade Level: 7 - 12th


Length of Time: 45-60 Minutes

Objectives & Outcomes

Learners will express emotion through painting, as elicited by music.

Materials Needed

  • CD or computer access to various types of music (country, rap, classical, contemporary, etc.)


Opening to Lesson

Begin by asking students if they have a favorite song or type of music. Ask why that particular song/type is a favorite. Explain that music often inspires people to do other things, including create art.

Body of Lesson

  • Offer students a large sheet of paper and have them fold it into the number of squares equal to how many musical styles you will share.
  • Also have students armed with paint brush, rinse cup, paper towels, and a selection of paint colors.
  • Tell students they will first listen to a few minutes of a particular musical style then they will begin painting in a single square.
  • They are to paint what the music inspires.
  • There are no wrong answers, but they should be able to explain why they painted what they have.
  • Specify that the paintings are to be inspired, but small.
  • They will have 10 to 15 minutes only to complete each before moving to the next.
  • Start with the first music style


Allow students to share at least one painting and how the music inspired the painting. Have students cut the painted squares apart and display each genre together to illustrate the differences.

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Assessment & Evaluation

Assessment will be based on participation and student explanations of what was painted and why.

Modification & Differentiation

Some students may need extended time or fewer musical selections depending on ability

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