Design a Personal Coat of Arms

Lesson Plan, Grades 5-12, Language Arts, Social Studies, Art, Math, Painting


Lesson Plan and Artwork by Joe Culotta

Perhaps one of the most enduring aspects of Medieval England is heraldry. Though it originated in the 12th century, the Coat of Arms and other forms of heraldry continue to be used even today. Companies, schools and religious institutions use heraldry to identify themselves by creating a shield/crest to signify their place in the community. Five colors have been recognized since the earliest days of heraldry. These are red, black, blue, green and purple.


  • Students will research and study the history and use of heraldry in the Medieval Period.
  • Students will select a basic design as an emblem significant for their own Coat of Arms from either their family name, school name, school class or club that they are in.
  • Students will create a shield design on canvas using one of those ideas as their Coat of Arms.

Supplies Needed

Fredrix Canvas Pad 9 x 12, 10 sheets
Liquitex paint markers primary, set of 6
Liquitex classic paint assorted, set of 12
Sax Olympia Pure White Bristle Brush, set of 6
*Here are the supplies needed for this lesson plan for reference. Find a convenient carousel of shoppable products for this lesson below.


Standard #2: Organize and develop artistic ideas and work
Standard #3: Refine and complete artistic work.
Standard #5: Develop and refine artistic work for presentation.
Standard #8: Interpret intent and meaning in artistic work.
Standard #10: Synthesize and relate knowledge and personal experiences to make art.
Standard #11: Relate artistic ideas and works with societal, cultural and historical context to deepen understanding.



Students will create a symbol or figure to incorporate into their design for creating a coat of arms.


Students will incorporate lettering into the design reflective of their idea or symbol.


Initial drawings should be done showing placement and incorporation of their symbol or figure and lettering into the artwork.


After thumb nail sketches are approved of the Coat of Arms, the work will be measured out and drawn onto the canvas pad.


The Coat of Arms selected and drafted will then be painted using paint pens and paint, onto the canvas.


A canvas pad is ideal for this lesson as it lends itself to be cut with scissors and bent or shaped as desired before mounting.


The completed painting can then be applied on a support mount for display.