Thursday, February 9, 2012

Lesson idea: Planar Landscape sculptures

Here's another lesson idea that was done only once two years ago and then never revisited again!

In theory, this project is an awesome idea. In reality, it was a huge challenge as a first project (for the 3D foundational kids) and it was a real pain in the patushky (overall) for me since it required me to just about push the project through to the end.

In my defense, this was the first project I ever did in my current classroom and I wasn't sure what to expect of the students/class. This project was the one the previous teachers did and because it had always been done, I was being obedient and doing it. That being said? Maybe I did it wrong - I really don't know - but I did it once and then never did it again.

The idea of this project was to teach the student to use flat surfaces (planes, if you will) in order to create 3D images. Basically, it's a similar idea as a diorama only it's not enclosed.

The materials we used were the following:
  • Foam-core board in white and black for the base of the structure
  • Pebbled mat board for the vertical planes
  • Xacto knives to cut, trim, sculpt the planes so that they could be presented in the vertical stacked presentation as you see above
  • Acrylic paints, markers, pens, etc. - basically mixed media for coloring
  • White glue and (eventually) hot glue to really get the piece to stick into the bases
The students who went with the simplest ideas were the most successful. Many came up with seriously elaborate takes on what could be done and almost every single one of those students was discouraged long before the end of the project happened which ultimately resulted in them being less invested and turning out seemingly subpar work. IF (and that's a huge if!) I ever do this again, I will approach it in a much different way and encourage them to employ the use atmospheric perspective so that their pieces look more like flat paintings that have actual depth.

[Funny thing to note: I just had to correct a typo where I wrote depth as "death" instead. If that doesn't sum up how I felt about this project I don't know what does! But enough with bashing it already. I mean, like I said, it was bad but I'm sure it was just particularly bad to me.]

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