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Re: [teacherartexchange] Pipe Cleaner Art


Date: Sat Jul 02 2005 - 07:30:49 PDT

    I do a wire figure scupture with my 5th graders. My husband makes
wooden bases for me . Students are given a 36" piece of gauge wire for the
anchor piece and leave one end that will go in a drilled hole in the base.
Then they use Twisteez and pipe cleaners to flesh out the figure. The gauge
wire works best as an achor since it's stronger than the Twisteez or pipe
cleaners. We use buttons, beads, various scraps and whatever else we can
find that works for additional details. I've had students voluntarily bring
things from home to add as "props."

    Last year, we did this project during the Olympics and the figures were
involved with sports--gymnastics, swimming, skiing, skating, etc. The
kids love this project. The results have been very successful. It's a
great lesson that covers 3-D forms and movement. I do brief gesture
drawing with the class before we begin the sculptures so it is a lesson in
figure drawing as well.

    Twisteez come is a variety of colors. There's a wide variety of pipe
cleaners two including neon and glittery ones. It's one of the few projects
where I use pipe cleaners. I've found gauge wire, twisteez and pipe
cleaners very age appropriate, too.

    Your idea of dinosaurs or zoo animals sounds great. Hope this helps.

Anne C-H in Illinois

> I'm considering doing a lesson where students use pipe
> cleaners to create wire sculptures. In college we
> created sculptures with actual wire, but I think the
> kids can do something pretty similiar with pipe
> cleaners which are much easier to shape and bend and
> come in a wide array of colors.
> I believe I saw some white ones that glow in the dark
> which would look cool for some projects. They could
> maybe create pipe cleaner sculptures of dinosaurs with
> the glow in the dark ones. Or maybe each could create
> a different animal and together they would display in
> some sort of zoo themed exhibit.
> Has anyone worked much with pipe cleaners? Do the
> students enjoy working with them? Any problems? Suggestions?

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