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Teacher’s guide

The teacher's guide offers a comprehensive overview of each component to be found on the Studio Riopelle digital platform. It explains how to approach the artist's practice so as to invite students to dive into the heart of Jean Paul Riopelle's creative process.

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Riopelle Studio is a virtual pedagogical interface available to all schools for free. While the tool is intended to help teachers share about creating and appreciating art, it can be used by anyone who wants to discover the artist Jean Paul Riopelle and his body of work. Each project involves playful experiments that bridge learning and fun. These projects can easily be included in school curricula and evaluated with personalized criteria. All of the pedagogical materials used are also compatible with different educational programs around the world. Riopelle Studio offers a wide variety of free, stimulating resources, including

Each art project is laid out step-by-step and accompanied by educational videos. This format makes it possible to teach the projects in a classroom, in real-time, or remotely through an asynchronous course. Each project is organized with the following subsections: 


  • Intentions
  • Project Summary
  • List of Materials
  • Variations: Guidelines for Beginners, Intermediate and Advanced Learners 
  • Context
  • Take it One Step Further: Interdisciplinary Ideas, Digital fun, Play with Storytelling, Have Fun with Philosophy


  • Presentation of the Theme
  • Viewing of Short Educational Video(s)


  • Activity 1: Appreciate
  • Activity 2: Create


  • Summary of What was Learned 
  • Displaying the Creations

The projects are inspired by Jean Paul Riopelle’s creative process. They involve gestures, tools, materials and techniques used by the artist during his prolific career, during which he produced over 7,000 pieces!

The five themes were chosen to appeal to a collective imagination and each one bears a link to important artistic phases in Riopelle’s life. The following table presents a summary of the 5 themes used to structure the projects and online art games:


Each project suggests ways to adapt it to different educational or learning contexts, according to the available material and technological resources. 

Take it One Step Further

Each project proposes options to “Take it One Step Further.” These interdisciplinary ideas remain optional. The first option, “Digital Fun,” invites participants to use digital tools creatively during or after the project. The second option, “Play with Storytelling,” suggests ways to communicate orally or through writing, making use of participants’ first or second languages. The third option, “Have Fun with Philosophy,” is meant as a basic introduction to philosophy for kids. 

Appreciation Activities

The appreciation activities are games that invite students to discover the artist’s unique world. The playful context is meant to encourage curiosity about his art.

Creative Activities 

Beyond simply imitating the artist’s style through simplistic activities to “Make Art like Jean Paul Riopelle,” the projects invite students to dive into the nitty gritty of his artistic process. It’s the perfect opportunity to get to know the artist and learn how to create art like he did—with full creative freedom. The entire process is explained step-by-step with photos and short videos. 


The integration activity proposed at the end of each project is an opportunity to reflect back on what was learned. The sheet also provides space to identify the strengths of each student as well as things they could work on. 

RIO Gallery

The RIO Gallery is a space to share art that is open to all. It’s the perfect place to display the different pieces created during the Studio Riopelle projects and art games. All you need to do is fill out the following form to submit the creations for moderator approval. 


A glossary is provided to help learn about different concepts and terms related to visual art, as well as the thematic elements from Riopelle’s world mentioned throughout the project descriptions.


The sketchbook is a powerful paper tool used to support students’ creative processes. It can be used to jot down answers or ideas, to complete technical exercises and for sketches. It’s similar to an artist’s notebook. This is an effective way to collect student learning records. You’ll have many opportunities to use the paper sketchbook when working on projects in class. Using a sketchbook is not mandatory, but it is suggested. 

To create your own sketchbook, here is a cover page to print. Simply staple a few blank sheets of paper underneath this cover page to make a simple sketchbook.