Chalk Pastel Starry Night


Students recreate Starry Night using chalk pastels

Recommended Ages

Elementary school to middle school

Historical Art Examples or References

Vincent Van Gogh’s Starry Night


Impressionism: a style of painting using small brush strokes to make an image 



Picture of Starry Night

Chalk pastels

Anticipatory Set

Discussion the movement, artist, and piece


1. Start with the brown foreground

2. Make the ground green beyond the foreground.

3. Color the yellow stars.

4. Slowly build the surrounding of the stars into a darker blue.

5. Every stroke must be short, to emulate impressionism.


Life applications; how the lesson might apply to non-art related experiences or other types of knowledge.

1. What was Impressionism?

2. Who was Vincent Van Gogh?

Many students thought they could not accomplish this piece because it was made by a famous artist, however, when I taught them how to do it step by step, they followed very well. One girl did not quit for a second even though she was very unsure of continuing. I kept praising her work, and she eventually finished her beautiful art work! Emulating artists is an easy way to discover how far you can go in an artwork. It also helps you find what your style is and how it differs from another artist’s.