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Information Transfer Activity for Kids

Pixel Drawing DIY

  • Duration: 30-60 min
  • Difficulty: Medium
  • Cost: $0

Use a pattern of 1's and 0's to create a pixelated work of art!

Material List

  • 1Picture you want to pixelate (simple images with 1-3 colors work best)
  • 1Sheet of graph paper
  • Different colored markers
  • Pencil with a good eraser


  • 1Place the graph paper and photo next to each other.
  • 2Using the photo for reference, write a 1 in any of the squares that will be filled in.
  • 3Create a code for the other colors. For example, 1 = Black, 11 = Red, 111= Blue.
  • 4Add 1's to your image to show where different colors will go.
  • 5Using your color key, fill in the colors to reveal the pixelated image.
  • Tip:On your first try use a very simple image like a smiley face to get some practice.

How It Works

When a photo is taken with a camera, the information about the image is stored as a pattern of 1's and 0's. That pattern of numbers tells a digital screen which tiny lights - called pixels - to turn on (1's) and which ones to turn off (0's). The tiny lights make a picture that we can see. In real life it takes thousands or millions of lights turning different colors to make a high-resolution image (that means there are so many little lights that the image looks clear and sharp).

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