Sep 10, 2010

Black and White Notan

This is a Japanese design technique called Notan. I am unsure of how long ago this technique originated as I haven't been able to find a lot of information about it. I was introduced to this activity recently by another art teacher. 

These were made by some of my grade 3 students using one sheet of black paper and one sheet of white paper.  It's great for a one-off lesson for shape, symmetry, reflection and cutting skills.

Students draw shapes around all edges of their page, the only rules being: the shapes go off the edge of the page and must be able to be simple enough for them to cut out. Then they flip out the cut-outs and glue them down. Simple but effective (what we all want!).


  1. Anne, I love this lesson! They look striking!

  2. How many class periods did you take for this lesson?? I would love to do this with my 3rd graders!

    1. Most had it done in a one hour session but some needed two. Depends how complex their designs are.


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