PrimaryArt & Design

Printing KS2 – Sunsets and silhouettes art lesson plan

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PDF lesson plan

Key Stage



Years 3-6


Blend sunset colours and add striking silhouettes to produce unique compositions with this printing KS2 lesson plan…

We recognise the savannah landscapes of East Africa as the cradle of human life. Two and a half million years ago, our ancestors set up homes among the grassland environments that nurtured evolution. Some psychologists believe these landscapes appeal today because we subconsciously recognise them as our birthplace.

Children are instinctively drawn to images of savannahs. They’ll be intrigued to learn about their deep-rooted connections with them. In this lesson the landscapes will inspire them to create a collection of colourful prints based on silhouetted shapes of African wildlife.

Printing KS2 learning objectives

  • Develop an understanding of the principles of printmaking
  • Use rollers to smoothly blend two colours
  • Create compositions of contrasting colours
  • Explore the effects of printing textured surfaces

Starter activity

Begin by showing online images of savannah landscapes. Add ‘sunset’ and ‘silhouette’ to your search terms and you’ll find photographs that will immediately engage children’s attention.

Ask children to imagine they’re in the landscape and to describe what they can see, encouraging them to be ambitious with their vocabulary.

Ask them to guess what the photographs show. Are they familiar with the notion that human life evolved in such landscapes?

Explain to children that these images are their inspiration for printmaking. They’ll make prints with two layers of ink, with black silhouettes of trees and animals against a blend of background colours.

Robert Watts is a senior lecturer in art and design education at the University of Roehampton, where he teaches undergraduate and postgraduate students and researches children’s aesthetic experiences. Browse more KS2 art ideas.

Printing KS2 lesson plan
Printing KS2 – Sunsets and silhouettes art lesson plan
PrimaryArt & Design

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