Dried-Corn Door Decor

Dried-Corn Door Decor lesson plan

Celebrate the fall harvest with decorative ears of Indian corn. Display these handsome ears year after year.

  • 1.

    Research information about the importance of corn, an indigenous crop in North America. Find out about its uses by both Native Americans and later immigrants to the continent. What role does corn play today in cultures around the world? These authentic-looking ears celebrate the history and harvest of corn.

  • 2.

    On a clean, dry paper plate, flatten a large handful of Crayola Air-Dry Clay to about one-half inch (2.25 cm) thick.

  • 3.

    With a craft stick or plastic knife cut thin ovals about 6" long in the shape of ears of corn. Square off the tops for stems. With a straw, cut out a hole in the top of each ear to hold the husk. Press into the ears with a clip clothespin to make rows of corn kernels. Air-dry the corn for at least 2 days.

  • 4.

    Using Crayola Washable Tempera, paint the corn in earth tones. Rinse your brush between colors. To make husks, dip a plain paper towel into the rinse water from your painting. Spread out the corn and husks on a paper plate to air-dry.

  • 5.

    To add texture to the corn, add one or more coats of Crayola Texture It! Mixing Medium. For a pearl-like finish, cover with Crayola Pearl It! Mixing Medium. Air-dry the finish.

  • 6.

    Roll up the dry paper towel. Pull it through the hole in the top of the corn. String a few ears together with raffia to hang. These make beautiful gifts!


  • Children research the historic and cultural importance of corn to Native American and other cultures.
  • Students create a 3-D life-like replica of Indian corn to celebrate the harvest.


  • Study the life ways of Native Americans and recreate some of the other items they made and used, such as pots, pelts, and jewelry. To make a simple pinch pot, roll clay into a ball, press your thumb in the middle, and with your forefinger press and pull t
  • Find out what other crops were native to North America. How has their use spread around the world? What animals were indigenous? Which animals were brought to the continent by immigrants?
  • Study Native Americans in your area. Look up names of local tribes and other native words. Hold a spelling bee. Make recipes with corn. Hold a fall festival with samples.
  • Assessment: Observe children as they follow the steps of the art techniques. How detailed and authentic are their ears?