Why You Need to Embrace the Corner Sun

Art Teachers everywhere are tired of seeing them. You know what I’m talking about—the dreaded corner sun. To some, a corner sun is a mere annoyance, but to others, it’s a downright abomination. Whatever your position on the corner sun, I have startling news: Research says you need to embrace it.

That’s right! Corner suns are a normal part of drawing development. 

Things like a corner sun, a blue line for the “sky,” and objects lined up in a row are all signs that a student is in the Schematic Stage of Drawing Development.


Embrace the corner sun


These students are generally between the ages of 5 and 9 and are starting to develop symbols for objects and people.

They are drawing the world as they perceive it, so it’s important to be mindful of your criticism. 

Banishing corner suns from you art room or criticizing those that draw them only serves to discourage your students. You can feel free to help them envision the sun being whole or to look at photos of the blue sky coming all the way down to the ground, but don’t be surprised if your students continue to do things their own way. Some of them literally cannot perceive the world in the way an adult does, and that’s OK!

Ultimately, patience is the best way to deal with the corner sun. As students naturally move into the next stage of drawing development, it will pass!

How do you deal with the corner sun in your art room? 


Magazine articles and podcasts are opinions of professional education contributors and do not necessarily represent the position of the Art of Education University (AOEU) or its academic offerings. Contributors use terms in the way they are most often talked about in the scope of their educational experiences.


Amanda Heyn

Amanda Heyn is AOEU’s Director of K–12 PD & Media and a former AOEU Writer and elementary art educator. She enjoys creating relevant and engaging professional development just for art teachers.

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