I have just started the same project, with 7 & 8th graders but most aren't
papier mache. Yes of course it's nuts, but it's also a good time for it because
it's kind of festive in some way. It is becoming a last project "tradition" and
the kids expect it.
After an internet (we have a TV & computer combo on a cart, this was the first
time I've tried it) lesson on Oldenburg, had them produce a "proposal" -
including a drawing of the object from more than one view,
measurements(estimated) and a materials list. I won't discuss their project with
them (of course I do some, but that's the idea) until they submit a proposal,
since I can't get in their heads and see what they are seeing there.
This is the only time I ask them to provide their own materials. Of couse they
can also use school stuff, but preferably they will contribute. This has been
good. If they think up something that they will mostly make at home, they need
another one to do in class, or help others in class. They get 5 points taken off
for every day they are not engaged in the project during class time. This
protects the kids who work every day from the kids who only work the last few
days and still produce a good piece.
Last year we had an 8' yellow pencil, with a metal band (coffee can) and pink
foam rubber eraser, carpet roll body and turned wood point (black electical tape
lead), and a four foot stuffed cel phone pillow, with very accurate buttons from
adhesive craft foam. giant sticks of gum with carefully painted wrappers are
good too. This year so far the best one in progress is a a 3 ft plate with a
giant slice of pie, out of cardboard (so far).
One of my favorite materials is foam rubber, and I encourage them to buy the
22x22x4" foam seat cushions which cut easily with sharp scissors, then we Rit
dye them (for conversation hearts) or get it wet and color with Prang Ambrite,
which stains it when it is dry. Right now we have 11" conversation hearts and a
22" cinnamon roll being made.
Cheap "bouncy balls" from Wal Mart are grapes and golfballs, a hula hoop with
the plastic deli cake covers and iridescent clear giftwrap tissue is aspiring to
become a giant diamond ring. OH! I almost forgot. Three pringles cans together,
with a smallish hole cut in the top lid is a tube of mascara. Walmart has new
long black brushes for cleaning between appliances. Our tech-ed guy cut the long
narrow end and rubber-dipped the tip for the student, she painted the handle
black and it is an absolutely perfect mascara wand. Pushed through the smallish
hole in the pringle's lid it makes the perfect mascara-wand sound. We laughed
It's fun, email me off list (I get it faster) any time if I can help.
Betty in Oklahoma