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I do a project with 7th graders. I got the idea from Arts and
Activities Magazine, but don't remember which issue.
It is a cardboard art project that is an excellent follow-up to an
introduction to 17th and 18th century colonial American Architecture. It
reflects characteristics of the saltbox, and Cape Cod home styles.
We first brainstorm over different possible colonial buildings that
could exist between the years 1650 and 1750. Possibilities could
include: a church, school, tinsmith, blacksmith, carpenter, doctor's
office, barber, potter, general store, saw mill, jail or town hall.
Students pick different ideas so that we end up with a village. We
avoid a town with 12 jails.
First preliminary drawings show each side view, front view, and back
view. No specific scale is used. The overall building size of 4" long
x 3" wide x 5" high must be considered.
Student create the building shells with thick clean corrugated
cardboard. Each side is built and glued onto a cardboard lot. The roof
sections are applied as soon as the base is dry. When the main shell is
stable, a chimney, lean-to's or back sheds may be added with more
Decoration is applied next. We discuss texture. Windows, doors,
shingles, shutters, bricks, siding, etc are added using thin cardboard
from shoe boxes, cereal boxes and gift boxes.
Play sand can be mixed with white glue to simulate cement or succo.
Natural rocks can be applied to chimneys, paths, and roads. Sawdust can
be mixed with white glue to simulate a grass texture for the lot. (Ask
shop class for dust). Toothpicks are great for window frames. Macaroni
letters can be used to make store signs, usually with the creaters name
in the title. Small twigs are good for a wood pile. The ideas are
endless!! All materials are firmly glued with Elmers.
Next the entire project is painted with black acrylic paint. This may
take several class periods. EVERYTHING MUST BE COVERED. When dry gold
paint is lightly brushed over all of the 3-dimensional surfaces. The
more textures used the more dramatic the look. The artwork looks as if
it was created in hammered and welded metal.
We then arrange the projects to create a village at the art fair.
Student adore their projects. Any questions feel free to ask.