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HomeClassroom ResourcesCalendar Activities

October 25

Artist Pablo Picasso was born on this day in 1881.

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Artist Pablo Picasso was born on this day in 1881.

Grades 5 – 10
Calendar Activity Type Historical Figure & Event





Pablo Picasso, a dominant figure in 20th-century Western art, was born on October 25, 1881, in Malaga, Spain. In painting and sculpting, he was one of the creators and popularizers of the Cubist style. Though Picasso was not typically considered "political," one of his most celebrated works, Guernica, memorializes the destruction of the Basque town of Guernica during the Spanish Civil War. He died on April 8, 1973.





For high school students, select a Picasso Cubist portrait from one of the Websites. If you have a projector, you can project the image from the website onto a screen. If not, you can make a color copy of the portrait or arrange for your class to visit the computer lab.

Give students about one minute to view the piece, then ask them to write their impressions and share them with a partner. Next, show students a Picasso portrait that does not employ the Cubist style (most of his work prior to 1905) and ask them to describe the person's face and body. Then, share with students the main concept of Cubism, which is to capture the essence of a subject by showing its multiple perspectives all at the same time. Show students another Picasso Cubist portrait and ask them to describe the person in the portrait this time. Is this person recognizable? What perspectives are shown? After this discussion, students can have fun creating their own Picasso-style art using the interactive Picassohead.




  • On-Line Picasso Project

    This website is a virtual one-stop shop for everything related to Picasso. The site not only contains biographical information about Picasso, but also offers thousands of full-color images of his work.


  • Picasso

    This website, developed by Maryland Public Television, highlights several Picasso paintings and provides analyses of his works. The section called Vantage Point offers materials for using Picasso to enrich mathematics, social studies, and language arts curricula.


  • Picasso is Dead in France at 91

    This page features the text of the 1973 New York Time article announcing the death of Picasso. Students can compare the 1973 perspective of the painter and his work with the modern perspective.


  • Guggenheim Collection: Cubism

    The Guggenheim Museum provides examples of Cubist art from its collection, including some of Picasso's works. Also included is a definition of Cubism.



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Grades   6 – 8  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson

Creative Communication Frames: Discovering Similarities between Writing and Art

Graphic organizers assist the development of comparative vocabulary and generate discussions of analogy and metaphor in art as students go on a real or virtual tour of an art gallery.


Grades   3 – 5  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson

Artistic Elements: Exploring Art Through Descriptive Writing

Paint a vivid picture in your reader's mind with good descriptive writing! Artwork provides the perfect starting point for practicing descriptive writing that conveys color, shape, line, and mood.


Grades   6 – 8  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson

A Picture's Worth a Thousand Words: From Image to Detailed Narrative

The old cliche, "A picture is worth a thousand words" is put to the test when students write their own narrative interpretations of events shown in an image.


Grades   9 – 12  |  Lesson Plan  |  Unit

Comparing William Carlos Williams's Poetry with Cubist Paintings

Through discussion, drawing, and writing, students compare how William Carlos Williams's poetry and Cubist and Precisionist painting employ similar artistic strategies, enhancing their understanding of both kinds of text.


Grades   3 – 5  |  Lesson Plan  |  Unit

Peace Poems and Picasso Doves: Literature, Art, Technology, and Poetry

Students apply think-aloud strategies to reading and to composition of artwork and poetry. They research symbols of peace as they prewrite, compose, and publish their poetry.


Grades   9 – 12  |  Lesson Plan  |  Unit

Ekphrasis: Using Art to Inspire Poetry

In this lesson, students explore ekphrasis—writing inspired by art. Students find pieces of art that inspire them and compose a booklet of poems about the pieces they have chosen.