Creating and drawing cartoon characters is a great way for beginner artists to have fun while developing their own cartoon style. This art lesson is a hit with any elementary-age kid and also makes the perfect extra art activity to always have on hand.
Before You Begin
Make a copy of each packet that has different facial expressions, facial features, and ideas as inspiration for their carton face. Children have a blast putting different shapes together to create hilarious new characters.
The best part of this art lesson is that it requires children to use their imagination to create their own cartoon people and not just copies of a famous character.
#1 Art Teacher Rule
The most important thing is that your cartoon face does not have to look exactly like the part drawn in the packet. Encourage kids to develop different styles and add their own artistic touches.
When would you use this lesson?
This lesson is great for the regular classroom, art classroom, or a rainy day at home. Once kids understand how to use the step-by-step guide, they will stay busy.
Sub Plan Idea
We also used this as a backup sub plan regularly because it doesn’t require many supplies and kids like doing it. Make a class set of these and keep them in your sub binder for just in case. We did the hard work for you.
What age is this drawing packet and lesson appropriate for?
We have used this with classes as young as Kindergarten and up to 5th grade. All the kids love mixing and matching different parts to make their own cartoon drawing style.
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How To You Demonstrate This Art Activity
Before I pass out materials, we would make a cartoon character together. I let different students come up and pick different parts and draw one together. They love working together to make a collaborative work of art.
Kids normally love making several different characters. Therefore we like to fold large pieces of paper to give them several different places to create easy cartoon drawings.
- 9″ x 12″ or 12″ x 18″ Manila or White Drawing Paper
- Permanent Black Marker
- Coloring Materials
- Packet (you can get this free cartooning packet at the end of the lesson)
How To Draw Cartoon Character With Simple Shapes
Encourage these drawings using basic shapes to be big. Kids can repeatedly follow these easy steps to make as many different cartoons as they want.
Step 1: Fold The Paper In Half
By folding the paper in half, kids are able to have so much fun creating 4 different cartoon heads.
Step 2: Choose Head Shape
Draw a large head shape on your paper.
Step 3: Add Cartoon Eyes
Children should pick the eyes they like best and add them to their drawings. Each artist can choose whether they have small or large eyes. They will think this looks super silly and a lot of fun.
Step 4: Pick The Nose
If you really want to get a class rolling, when demonstrating say “please come pick my nose” and you are sure to get a few kids giggling.
Once they have decided on a nose, go ahead and draw it on the face.
Step 5: Add A Cartoon Mouth
Pick from the images provided to create a mouth. It is okay if you need to change the drawing.
Step 6: Add Hair & Ears
Depending on the head shape a child chose, they may have to adjust the hairstyle to show it from different angles.
Optional: Outine With Marker And Color
You can use any drawing materials you want to finish these.
Ways To Expand On This Lesson
- Pick a favorite character and write a story or comic book or strip about them.
- Use these drawings as inspiration for unique model magic sculptures or other funny 3-d artworks.
Cartoon Drawing Tip
- If a child is struggling to draw a facial feature show them how things can be broken down into simple circles, straight lines, and geometric shapes.
- You could add a body shape to your fictional character
Large Class Setting Tip
If doing this in a large class setting, a good idea is to make the rule that children can not name their character’s face a name that is in the class.
The kids start to get a little silly when they are making their drawings. I have found that a blanket rule just stops a kid from using their drawing as a way to poke fun at another student.
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More Fun Drawing Ideas
- Easy Black and White Op Art Drawings: Use very similar materials with this free Op Art inspired lesson that is perfect for upper elementary students.
- Colored Pencils Wiggly Op Art Line Lesson
- How To Draw A Cat: Super Easy How-To Draw Tutorial
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Cartoon Characters Drawings For Kids
- Cartooning Packet
- 1 piece Drawing Paper or Copy Paper
- Coloring Materials Or Your Choice
- If making a cartoon book, fold your ppaer in half.
- Pick a head to use from the packet and draw a large head shape on your paper.
- Pick the eyes they like best and add them to their drawings.
- Decide on a nose, go ahead and draw it on the face.
- Add a cartoon mouth.
- Add ear and hair.
- Draw other fun accessorries for your chartacter.
- Optional: Color your cartoon.
- You may have to adjust the hairstyle or other facial features depending on the head shape you chose.
- If a child is struggling to draw a facial feature show them how things can be broken down into simple circles, straight lines and geometric shapes.
- If doing this in a large class setting, a good idea is to make the rule that children can not name their character’s face a name that is in the class.
- This art activity makes awesome sub plans for the elementary classroom or art class.