30 Unique Fifth Grade Art Projects To Tap Into Kids’ Creativity

Inside every kid lies the heart of an artist.

Collage of fifth grade art projects

Fifth grade art students are starting to master more advanced skills and techniques, and the work they create is really something to be proud of. These project ideas will expose them to new artists and concepts and help them find the creative artist within!

1. Illustrate your name

Student names with each letter an illustration that describes the student (Fifth Grade Art Projects)

This is a perfect project to kick off the school year. Kids illustrate their names with items that fit their style and personality. It will help you get to know them and assess their art skills at the same time.

Learn more: In Art We Trust

2. Take inspiration from Andy Warhol

Slice of pizza illustrated in six different colors, in the style of Andy Warhol

Warhol’s pop art is so much fun to explore and emulate. Your fifth grade art students can pick any object they like for this colorful activity.

Learn more: Elements of the Art Room/Andy Warhol Inspiration

3. Craft LEGO minifig portraits


Colorful blocky portraits of fifth grade art students drawn in the style of LEGO minifigures

We all know kids (and adults!) love LEGO. That’s what makes these portraits so cool! Kids draw themselves as minifigs, starting with basic shapes and adding details as they go.

Learn more: Art. Eat. Tie Dye. Repeat.


4. Design Jasper Johns numbers

Numeral three with various shapes and patterns in the style of Jasper Johns

This is one of those activities with such impressive results that you’ll be amazed it can be done by fifth grade art students! Take a look at Jasper John’s number paintings, then use stencils and rulers to create your own incredible designs.

Learn more: Art Room Blog

5. Hang 3D color wheels

Collage of paper plates colored, folded, and glued to make 3D balls (Fifth Grade Art Projects)

The color wheel is a basic art concept your students have probably mastered by now, so take things a step further by crafting 3D color wheel spheres instead! This is an easy project that requires nothing more than paper plates, paint, and paper clips.

Learn more: Art Room 104

6. Assemble Picasso relief portraits

Picasso-style portrait of a girl made with pieces of colorful cardboard

Picasso’s mind-bending works stimulate students to look at the world in a whole new way. This cardboard relief portrait is all about deconstructing and reassembling to find a new perspective.

Learn more: tinyartroom

7. Decorate pretty paper lanterns

Rectangular paper lanterns illustrated with Japanese-style art

Hokusai’s woodblock prints are the inspiration for these paper lanterns. Use watercolors to create soft images, then fold the paper into lanterns to hang from the ceiling.

Learn more: What’s Happening In The Art Room?

8. Sketch 3D cone drawings

Series of cones emanating from a central perspective, sketched and shaded in black and white (Fifth Grade Art)

It may look complicated, but this fifth grade art idea starts with basic concentric curved lines that any student can draw. The magic comes when you fill in with Sharpies, then shade with colored pencils.

Learn more: Art With Mrs. Fillmore

9. Illustrate onomatopoeia words

Fifth grade art students holding illustrations of the words Sam, Crack, and Zap

Calling all comic book lovers! Students will get a real kick out of illustrating action words inspired by Roy Lichtenstein.

Learn more: Jamestown Elementary Art Blog

10. Fold origami dragon eyes

Purple paper eye folded out of paper and colored

Teach students to illustrate an eye, then fold a simple origami shape and add dragon scales for a paper craft that’s like no other.

Learn more: Elements of the Art Room/Dragon Origami Eyes

11. Fashion clay coil designs

Clay art pieces sculpted from coils in bright colors (Fifth Grade Art)

The coiling method of ceramics is really accessible for everyone. Though it’s often used to make pots, we love how it works for these colorful coil sculptures too.

Learn more: Mini Matisse

12. Cut out positive negative collages

Abstract black shapes on purple paper

Explore the concepts of positive and negative space with this cool paper craft. Kids will have to be very careful as they cut, so their reflections are exact.

Learn more: Zilker Elementary Art Class

13. Paint snowy pastel mountains

Pastel colored mountain range with bare trees, created with watercolor resist method (Fifth Grade Art)

The watercolor resist method is an eternal art room favorite. It’s terrific for creating a snowy winter scene with dreamy watercolors and stark bare trees.

Learn more: Primary Art

14. Draw Zentangle initials

White letter T surrounded by a variety of black and white patterns

Zentangles have become popular in recent years as a way to relax and de-stress. Teach students how they work, building designs around the negative space of their initial.

Learn more: Miss Young’s Art Room

15. Create 3D paper name sculptures

Colorful paper letters cut out and stacked

This sculpture project requires your fifth grade art students to tap into their engineering skills too! They’ll have to figure out how to balance their letters in a way that’s pleasing to the eye but also stable enough to stay in place.

Learn more: Mrs. Yang’s Art Room

16. Parody American Gothic

Collage of drawings parodying the painting American Gothic (Fifth Grade Art)

Grant Wood’s American Gothic is one of those iconic paintings everyone knows. That’s what makes this parody project a real hoot! Kids re-create the painting with a new pair of main characters, showing that art definitely has room for humor.

Learn more: Jamestown Elementary Art Blog

17. Construct mixed media bird nests

Bird nest painted on paper, accented with twigs and clay eggs (Fifth Grade Art)

There are so many details in these cool bird nests that you’ll just want to stare at them for hours. Start with a painting, then add 3D elements like twigs and clay bird eggs.

Learn more: Art With Mrs. Fillmore

18. Try direct drawing with Jim Dine paintbrushes

Drawing of various types of paintbrushes, splattered with paint drops (Fifth Grade Art)

This pop art project starts with a directed drawing lesson, as kids learn to create the various paintbrushes. Then they add color and paint speckles to bring the piece to life.

Learn more: Elements of the Art Room/Jim Dine Inspired Paintbrushes

19. Study form and paint lighthouses

Black and white lighthouse standing on a beach with a watercolor pastel sky

Review terms like horizon and background with these soft lighthouse landscapes. Use white crayon on black construction paper to add depth to the lighthouse itself.

Learn more: Primary Art

20. Shade spheres to make plants

Collage of planets drawn and shaded in chalk pastels on black paper (Fifth Grade Art)

Chalk pastels are wonderful for helping students work on blending and shading. Use photographs of planets to inspire their work.

Learn more: The Learning Tree

21. Blend oil pastels into sunflowers

Wilting sunflower drawn with oil pastels on black paper (Fifth Grade Art Projects)

Here’s another awesome blending activity, this time with oil pastels. Kids can draw sunflowers with true-to-life colors or use their imaginations to create any color scheme they like.

Learn more: Expression of Imagination

22. Layer a window scene

Paper cat looking out a window at a castle and other items (Fifth Grade Art)

Build this piece from the background up, layering window frame and sill over the landscape and finishing with a cat enjoying the view.

Learn more: Education.com

23. Weave paste paper patterns

Student weaving together two pages painted in different patterns (Fifth Grade Art)

Start by mixing paint and paste to create a thick mixture to spread on paper. Then create patterns with your fingers, a fork, or any other object. Finish by cutting one page into strips and weaving it into the other.

Learn more: Ms. Amsler’s Art Room

24. Explore one subject in three styles

Painting of a cat divided into three parts, realistic, abstract, and non-objective

Combine multiple art styles in one awesome project. In the center, students draw their subject realistically. On either side, they draw the same object in abstract and non-objective forms.

Learn more: The Art of Learning

25. Sculpt Georgia O’Keeffe flowers

Clay flowers sculpted in the style of Georgia O'Keeffe

Georgia O’Keeffe’s huge brilliant flower paintings practically seem to leap off the page, so they’re ideal as inspiration for this fun clay project.

Learn more: Jamestown Elementary Art Blog

26. Use a grid to help you draw

Photo of a dog with a superimposed grid, next to a drawing of the dog using a grid (Fifth Grade Art Projects)

For kids who feel overwhelmed by drawing, try the grid method. Break a drawing into grid sections, copying each section one at a time. It makes a big project seem much more manageable.

Learn more: Art With Mrs. Fillmore

27. Write All About Me squash books

Folded paper squash books hung along the wall (Fifth Grade Art)

This is part fifth grade art project, part writing project. Kids fold paper using a bookmaking technique called “squash books,” then write and illustrate the sections to tell all about themselves.

Learn more: Art Is Basic

28. Reflect beautiful banyan trees

Colorful banyan tree reflected in water made using oil pastels

Banyan trees are works of art in themselves, so they’re sure to inspire your students to create beautiful pieces. They can show the trailing roots reflected in water or imagine them underground.

Learn more: ARTipelago

29. Color graffiti break dancers

Collage of colorful stick figures dancing in the style of Keith Haring (Fifth Grade Art Project)

Keith Haring’s vivid graffiti style is instantly appealing to kids, so they’ll enjoy creating their own break dancing scenes. All you really need is paper and markers for this quick project.

Learn more: Deep Space Sparkle

30. Dot Kusama-style pumpkins

Collage of paper pumpkins in dot patterns in the style of Kusama

Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama made incredible art using only dots of different sizes. Challenge your students to do the same with these clever pumpkin prints mounted on stencil-rolled backgrounds.

Learn more: Art Room Britt

Now that you’ve sparked their creativity, keep things going with these 50 Fifth Grade Creative Writing Prompts.

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30 Unique Fifth Grade Art Projects To Tap Into Kids' Creativity