LEAFY SCULPTURE – Texture, Colour, Form

Students use natural objects to create a leaf person. They make rubbings of a large leaf for the body, add sticks and twigs for arms and legs and use Model Magic for the head and feet. 

Required Time

160 Minutes

Grade Level

Grade 2 to Grade 6

Subject

Art Techniques
Language Arts
Mathematics
Science
Visual Arts

Vocabulary

colour detail form imagination natural objects rubbing sculpture shape texture

Materials

Dried Leaves Clothes Pegs Cotton Balls Twigs and Small Branches Dried Flowers and Grasses Googly Eyes and Other Embellishments Pipe Cleaners

Steps

LEAFY SCULPTURE – Texture, Colour, Form - Step One

Step One

Laminate or seal the leaf in some way.

LEAFY SCULPTURE – Texture, Colour, Form - Step Two

Step Two

Place a piece of construction paper on top of the leaf. Use a construction paper crayon to make a rubbing of the leaf. Repeat on another piece of construction paper, this time reversing the way you place the leaf.

LEAFY SCULPTURE – Texture, Colour, Form - Step Three

Step Three

Cut out both rubbings.

LEAFY SCULPTURE – Texture, Colour, Form - Step Four

Step Four

Glue two twigs to the back of one of the rubbings for arms.

LEAFY SCULPTURE – Texture, Colour, Form - Step Five

Step Five

Clamp the twigs in place with clothes pegs.

LEAFY SCULPTURE – Texture, Colour, Form - Step Six

Step Six

Use a pipe cleaner to join two longer branches together at one end. These are going to be the legs and the neck. They should be close together at the top, and far apart at the bottom. Let one of the branches extend about 3 cm past the other where you join them.

LEAFY SCULPTURE – Texture, Colour, Form - Step Seven

Step Seven

Squeeze glue down the centre of the rubbing.

LEAFY SCULPTURE – Texture, Colour, Form - Step Eight

Step Eight

Place the branches on top of the glue.

LEAFY SCULPTURE – Texture, Colour, Form - Step Nine

Step Nine

Clamp them in place with clothes pegs and allow them to dry thoroughly.

LEAFY SCULPTURE – Texture, Colour, Form - Step Ten

Step Ten

Remove the clothes pegs. Glue cotton balls on either side of the branches.

LEAFY SCULPTURE – Texture, Colour, Form - Step Eleven

Step Eleven

Squeeze glue around the outer edge of the leaf.

LEAFY SCULPTURE – Texture, Colour, Form - Step Twelve

Step Twelve

Place the other rubbing on top and clamp in place using clothes pegs. Allow it to dry thoroughly.

LEAFY SCULPTURE – Texture, Colour, Form - Step Thirteen

Step Thirteen

Mix the Model Magic to get the colour you want.

LEAFY SCULPTURE – Texture, Colour, Form - Step Fourteen

Step Fourteen

Shape the head and push it onto the stick. Make sure the stick goes completely inside the Model Magic. This will support the head and keep it from falling off.

LEAFY SCULPTURE – Texture, Colour, Form - Step Fifteen

Step Fifteen

Add details and embellishments.

LEAFY SCULPTURE – Texture, Colour, Form - Step Sixteen

Step Sixteen

Allow the Model Magic to dry for 2 days. Then glue the figure to a branch or stone.

Learning Goals

Students will be able to:

  1. Use leaves, sticks and natural objects to create a ‘leaf person’ sculpture;
  2. Create rubbings of leaves;
  3. Develop a list of personality traits for their sculpture;
  4. Demonstrate technical accomplishment and creativity; and
  5. Support their ideas with evidence found in the works.

Extensions

  1. Have students work in groups of 3 or 4 to create a graphic story using their leaf people as the main characters.
  2. Encourage them to base the character’s behaviour and way of speaking on their personality traits.
  3. Have students publish the stories in an anthology and share the book with other students in the school.

Prepare

  1. If possible take students on a nature walk and collect dried grasses and flowers, leaves and branches. Otherwise gather them ahead of time.
  2. Laminate the leaves or seal them in some other way.
  3. Download some images of sculptures, for example,
    Cat
    Shepherd
    Louvre
    Male
  4. Create a sample.

Introduction

  1. Display 2 images of different sculptures side by side. 
  2. Discuss how these artworks are different than a painting or drawing.
  3. Notice the different materials used for each work.
  4. Talk about what is interesting about each piece, and compare them, for example,
    Use of texture
    The effects of materials on how we relate to the work
    Personality of each piece and how it is achieved
    Body language and how it makes us feel about the figure
  5. Make sure students support their ideas with evidence found in the work. The VTS (Visual Thinking Strategies) approach uses an effective question that guides students to be precise in their thinking, "What do you see that makes you say that?"
    VTS
  6. Introduce the challenge

Activities

The Challenge

  1. Use leaves, sticks and natural objects to create a ‘leaf person’ sculpture.
  2. Create rubbings of leaves.
  3. Develop a list of personality traits for your sculpture.
  4. Demonstrate technical accomplishment and creativity.
  5. Support your ideas with evidence found in the works.

The Process

  1. If possible present an overview of the entire project using the display mode. This will allow students to see the ‘big picture’ and to be better aware of all the steps.
  2. Stress that this is a challenging project because it takes patience to wait for the glue to dry, and that it has many different components.
  3. Demonstrate how to make the rubbings and have students do theirs.
  4. As students finish and cut out their rubbings allow them to choose twigs and branches for the arms and legs.
  5. Structure the time so students complete all the gluing and clamping in one class, and finish the head and feet and embellishments in another.
  6. You cannot attach the sculpture to its base until the Model Magic dries because it will be too heavy to stand up. Once it is thoroughly dry the Model Magic becomes very light and the sculptures can be glued to a base.
  7. When the sculptures are finished have students use the ALL ABOUT questionnaire to interview their character. They should give it a name and answer the questions as if they are the Leafy.

Sharing

  1. Have students work in groups.  Provide a piece of coloured fabric for each group to place on their tables.
  2. Ask groups to work together to arrange their sculptures as if they are at a gathering.
    Introduce each character to the others in your group by sharing the answers to the questionnaire.
    Think about their personalities and body language as you group them.
  3. Ask students to gather in front of the displays and to look at the works thoughtfully.
  4. Ask them to find an interesting thing about any 3 of them.
  5. Move from display to display discussing the sculptures at each spot.
  6. During the discussion include references to:
    Personality – how the artist has communicated ideas about the figure
    Technical accomplishment – carefully constructed work
    Creativity – unique qualities about each piece
    Conversations – what might the figures be saying?
  7. Have students share some of the quiz information as comments are being made to confirm or expand on viewers' interpretations.

Assessment

  1. Observe students as they work  – thoughtful focus, discriminating, seeking more information, elaborating, experimenting
  2. Observe students as they discuss the art works – active listening, insightful contributions, supporting ideas with evidence found in the artwork and from personal experience. Use a checklist to track progress. (Downloads - LEAFY.tracking.sheet.pdf)
  3. Have students use the LEAFY self-assessment form to evaluate their work. (Downloads - LEAFY_self-assessment.pdf)