10 Art Sub Lessons that only need a Pencil

By The Arty Teacher - November 17, 2018

No teacher wants to be off school.  You know your students make more progress when you are there and no-one takes care of your materials and room like you do.  In reality, I like to lock everything away and leave work that only needs a pencil.  Having said that, with art being trimmed and trimmed from the curriculum in recent years, every second counts and I still want my students to make progress.  Hopefully, these 10 art sub lessons will help to reduce your workload and be prepared. The art worksheets below all:

  • Come with a lesson plan.
  • Link to commonly taught themes
  • Are tried and tested.
  • Teach valuable skills.
  • Only need a pencil.
  • Are only $3 or £3
  • (Or are much, much less when you subscribe).

Click on the image to purchase the resource.

Converse Grid Drawing: Encourage beautiful drawing with this converse grid drawing. Ideal as part of any drawing module or this would make an excellent homework or cover lesson to improve drawing skills. There are two versions of this grid drawing.  One where the grid lines are already in place, and one where your students draw the lines using the little marks on the edge as a guide.

10 Art Sub Lessons

The Circle Game: A great art cover or sub lesson.  Students think creatively and turn the circles into different drawings on this one-page resource.The Circle Game Cover Lesson

Copy the Pattern: A popular, one page, cover/sub lessons that requires all students to accurately copy the pattern. Includes lesson plan.

10 Art Sub Lessons

Your students will be inspired by the characterful faces in Hogarth’s engravings!  This worksheet and lesson plan asks students to create a page of detailed drawings inspired by the faces they can see on the worksheet.  This is an excellent resource to encourage detailed observational work and will link to many portrait projects.Draw faces sub lesson10 Art Sub Lessons

Drawing Fruit: This drawing fruit worksheet is a must-have for natural forms projects.  High-resolution images work well in colour and when photocopied into black and white.  Use it as a sub lesson or integrate it into fruit or natural forms projects.  The accompanying lesson plan is written as a sub lesson and includes a scripted paragraph for a non-specialist.Drawing Fruit sub lesson

10 Art Sub Lessons

We all teach portrait drawing units of work, so it’s good to have a portrait sub/cover lesson in your bank of resources.  This drawing eyes sub lesson is ideal.

10 Art Sub Lessons

10 Art Sub Lessons

This one-page resource with lesson plan asks students to practise creating tones/values with cross hatching and then to draw the burger using cross hatching.  This has been created as a sub/cover lesson but could also be used as part of a food project. The instructions suggest using a pen but these could also be completed in pencil.

Cross Hatching Burger

10 Art Sub Lessons

Draw the Butterfly sub/cover lesson is a super-useful download and will link to lots of projects you already teach.  Perhaps you already have an insect project or natural forms project? There is a worksheet that suggests pencil and another that suggests coloured pencil.

Draw the Butterfly

10 Art Sub Lessons

Students love a challenge and ‘The Knot Challenge’ is certainly that!  The lesson plan comes with a script for non-art-specialists so you can use it as a sub/cover lesson too.10 Art Sub Lessons

Backbone Drawing: This detailed drawing activity will give your students a challenge and keep them busy.  It comes with a lesson plan which is easy for a non-art-specialist to use.Drawing Bones

10 art sub lessons is a blog post about sub lessons but you can find many, many more art sub lessons on The Arty Teacher website.

Register on The Arty Teacher

Check out the Zentangle Resouces on The Arty Teacher!

Zentangle Art Lessons


Enjoy this article, Drop it a like


Or Share it

The Arty Teacher

Sarah Crowther is The Arty Teacher. She is a high school art teacher in the North West of England. She strives to share her enthusiasm for art by providing art teachers around the globe with high-quality resources and by sharing her expertise through this blog.

More Posts

8 responses to “10 Art Sub Lessons that only need a Pencil”

  1. Cindy La Ferney says:

    Do you have any sub plans that might be a little bit less detailed? I teach 5 year olds to 11 year olds (grades kindergarten to 5th) in the states. Thanks..Cindy

  2. Piper Placencia says:

    Once I purchase a lesson, how does it come? A hard copy in the mail or digital and I print it?

    • The Arty Teacher says:

      Hi Piper, If you purchase a lesson it’s a digital download and you would need to print it. Sarah

  3. Julie says:

    These look so helpful! Thanks

  4. Janet Taylor says:

    Thanks, these are terrific!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

More Resources you might like...

Subscribe & save in any currency!

Basic Subscription

Register and you can download 3 of the Free Resources Every Month!

3 Free Resources

Premium Subscription
$9.99 Per month $99 Per year


Save money and get 10 resources of your choice every month. The yearly subscription is the best value.

Save over 66%

School Subscription
$188 Per year $282 Per year $376 Per year $460 Per year $552 Per year $644 Per year $713 Per year $802 Per year $891 Per year


Purchase and you can add 2 teachers to your account so they can download 10 resources each month

save over 5% save over 5% save over 5% save over 7% save over 7% save over 7% save over 10% save over 10% save over 10%