During my full-time stint at elementary school, 4th grade students and I created collages based on the book Raven: A Trickster Tale from the Pacific Northwest by Gerald McDermott. I read the story aloud to the class and we discussed the stylized designs and colors found in the illustrations.
All works started with a blue rectangle on a black border with four red squares in the corners to begin the border design. Students also had a template for the shape of the raven itself. I decided that since the design and space for it to fill was so specific, this would be the best way to go. Although by fourth grade I try not to use too many stencils.
After that all of the cut paper designs were left to their individual choice. Enjoy!