Lesson Plan: Narrative Collage

Activities for this Lesson Plan

The Narrative Collage
People and Settings
What stories do you see?


Make a Coyle Collage (worksheet)

Time: Three 45 minute class periods
Grade Level: Middle School
School Subject: English, Art


Students will:

  • Examine Megan Coyle’s figurative collages to learn more about narrative artwork.
  • Consider how body language and the environment around a person can tell a story.
  • Study artwork and respond to questions.
  • Create a small narrative collage series and write a passage to go along with each narrative scene.


  • Paper
  • Pencil
  • Scissors
  • Acid-free glue sticks
  • Magazines
  • Construction paper (assortment of colors)


Class Period One

  1. Have students read the biography of Megan Coyle and review her people collages.
  2. Have students respond to questions from the Student Activities: The Narrative Collage, People and Settings, and What Stories Do You See?
  3. Discuss Coyle’s narrative collages in class. Focus on the construction of her collages and how the strips of paper resemble brushstrokes.
  4. Remind students to think of a story to illustrate with three small collages for the next two class periods.

Class Period Two

  1. Students will create their own paper collages.
  2. Have students brainstorm a story for their mini collage series.
  3. Have students sketch out an illustration for each work of art (3 different sketches).
  4. Distribute magazine and paper supplies to begin work on the collages.
  5. Have students finish three collages.

Class Period Three

  1. When collages are completed, have students write a passage to go along with each collage. The passage will tell the student’s story of the collages.
  2. Have the class share their work. A student will show a series of collages to the class, but wait to share the storyline passage. Have other students describe what story they see from the images. Lastly, have the student share the passage written to go along with each collage in the series.
  3. Have students discuss the different interpretations of the narrative collages – how they varied from the artist’s own interpretation.


To evaluate the students’ collages, ask:

  • Did the student create three cohesive collages?
  • Do the collages focus on color and texture?
  • Did the student successfully tell a story with images?

The written storyline, attached to the collages, should explain what each collage illustrates and should be supported by the composition of each work of art.