I like beginning the year with projects like these because it sets up the idea of experimentation. Each grade level tries something new, and it's not easy (for most). It takes hard work to fix our "mistakes" and not give up on our piece. That's my main focus for the kids.
Work hard. Don't give up.
Take risks. It's going to be okay.
So the first graders have to turn a "mark" I make on their papers as their drawing into something so that it looks like it always belonged there.
The second graders drew with 2 hands and had to figure out how best to hold their markers and keep their papers from sliding all over the place.
Most of the third graders had to draw with their opposite hands. At the end of the lesson though I did have one group hold a marker in each hand to see what they could come up with. Here are a few hilarious pictures of that struggle.
The fourth graders did a blind contour drawing, where they drew a partner without looking at their paper. The emphasis was on paying attention to detail and understanding that it's okay to mess up as long as we don't quit on our ideas.