K-6 Visual Art and Math (30-40 minutes)
The children will construct self-portraits out of shapes cut from construction paper.
Glue sticks, scissors, and construction paper
Art (fine motor movement, personal expression)
Science (observe, manipulate, measure, describe)
Math (reason about shapes)
Speaking and Listening (presenting ideas)
For older students use specific shape classifications such as polygons. Make sure students understand that their portrait does not have to look exactly like they do.
- Compare and contrast pre-cubist and cubist self-portraits by Picasso (http://robinurton.com/history/cubism.htm)
- Discuss and draw polygons
- Identify polygons in cubist paintings
- Discuss how aims of cubist art differ from more realistic forms of art (expresses feelings or ideas rather than simply looking like something)
- Identify and discuss polygons in faces (large photographs or mirrors could also be used)
- Cut polygons out of construction paper (review scissor safety)
- Construct a portrait by gluing polygons onto a large sheet of construction paper. Fill the space.
- Show the portrait to the class (or to a small group) and tell about the processes and choices that went into its production. What does it express?
A similar idea is included in the wonderful book, Object Lessons: Teaching Math Through the Visual Arts, K-5 by Caren Holtzman and Lynn Susholtz, 2011.