Title: See Life Under the Sea

Grade Rage: Elementary


Download the lesson plan in .pdf here



  • Students will examine, compare & contrast different types of sea life
  • Through their drawing they will explore depth through overlapping objects
  • Design a composition which includes at least 5 different sizes and types of fish, multiple sea plant species and at least one pair of overlapping creatures



  • Multiple books or photographs of saltwater fish and plants to review
  • Maped PlastiClean Plastic Crayons and/or Maped Triangular Oil Pastels [862048/862049 & 864010/864012]
  • Maped Essentials Triangular Graphite #2 Pencils [851779ZT]
  • Maped Classic 1 Hole Metal Pencil Sharpener [006600] (optional)
  • Maped Color’Peps Jungle Fine Tip Washable Markers x24 [845422]
  • 1 sheet of 9×12 White paper
  • Gallon-sized zip-lock bag
  • Newsprint or plastic to cover table
  • Spray bottle filled with water


Overview & Directions:

  • Share photographs with students to examine the different shapes, fins, and colors of fish (Compare and Contrast). Select and draw five different fish in the picture area. Draw lightly in pencil, making sure to show a variety of sizes (Large, Medium, and Small fish), shapes, and colors. Make at LEAST ONE FISH OVERLAPPING ANOTHER FISH and for more variety, have them swimming in different positions around the picture area.
  • Next, look at water plants, coral, seaweed, etc. and draw in a variety of plants. Put some in front of a fish and some behind the fish to make it look like they are swimming around the plants.
    By overlapping objects it will show depth (distance) in the
  • Color the fish first using plastic crayons or oil pastels. The harder (more solid) you color, the better they will show up when the artwork is finished. Use BRIGHT colors!
  • To make sure an area is left ‘white’ remember to color with a white crayon or pastel.
  • After the fish are all colored, color in the plants. Do NOT try to color in the water as they will have a special way to make the water!
  • Lay down plastic, newspaper, etc. to protect the table. On one side of a large Plastic baggie, have the students color with markers using mostly blue & green randomly around the baggie
  • Spritz the baggie with water until it starts to bead up the marker ink on the bag
  • Quickly turn the baggie upside down placing it on top of the fish picture. Rub over the baggie to squish the color around your picture. Continue to repeat it until all areas in the picture area have “bluish water” around the fish and plant.
  • Take a blue marker and outline the fish and some parts of the plants
  • Spritz the paper LIGHTLY one more time to soften the outlines
  • Let the artwork dry

Discussion Topics & Evaluation:

  • Composition: Is there the required 5 fish, assorted plants and at least one case of depth by overlapping? Does it have variety in size, shape, and colors?


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