## Tour + Workshop = DESIGN: Shape

By Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, October 26, 2006

### Grade Level

- Elementary School

### Category

- Other

### Subject Area

- Arts
- Mathematics
- Science
- Social Studies

### Lesson Time

One or two 50 minute class periods

### Introduction

Shape is one of the six basic elements of design, as shape is everywhere and all things have a shape. Learning about abstract/free form shapes and common or basic shapes has dual educational benefits as an art activity and as a fun and easy means to teach fundamental geometry.
By teaching shape and using observation, kinesthetic and tactile activity, and verbal and visual discussion, students will learn about:

- man-made and organic/natural shapes
- negative and positive shapes
- how shape is a basic element and tool for drawing/design
- the difference between 2-dimensional and 3-dimensional
- recognize pattern, symmetry, and free-form/abstraction in shape

### National Standards

**Visual Arts**

**Social Studies**Standard 2: Understands the historical perspective

**Science**

### Objectives

Students will:

- learn descriptive words of basic geometric and organic shapes and use them to identify visual art examples
- analyze and evaluate shapes in everyday and artistic work
- ecognize basic mathematical and creative techniques used in creating a geometric or organic shape
- raw a shape using various media and add 2 2-dimension dimensional media.
- combine actual created shapes and visual shapes to create a 3 3-dimensional design or artistic representation
- evaluate peer and individual work using shapes

### Resources

- art and design objects from the Cooper-Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum collection which students can examine closely
- visual examples of everyday objects, as well as basic geometric shapes
- A book to consider is:
*MathART Projects and Activities*(Grades 3-5) by Carolyn Ford Brunetto

- www.mmwindowtoart.com/foundations/shape.html
- www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_geometric_shapes
- www.brigantine.atlnet.org/GigapaletteGALLERY/websites/ ARTiculationFinal/MainPages/ShapeMain.htm
- www.mathforum.org/sum95/suzanne/whattess.html
- www.gettingtoknow.com/shapeguide.pdf
- www.artsedge.kennedy-center.org/content/2005/
- www.kinderart.com/drawing/crazy.shtml
- www.tabletoptelephone.com/~hopspage/Tessela.html
- www.incompetech.com/beta/plainGraphPaper/
- www.activityvillage.co.uk/grid%20papers.htm

### Materials

- examples of basic geometric shapes in 3D (everyday items)
- examples of basic geometric and free form shapes in 2D (appendix 1)
- examples of organic/free-form shapes (appendix 2)
- design and everyday objects from either the Cooper-Hewitt collection or similar to current exhibition
- dotted grid paper (see appendix 3)
- blank paper
- origami paper
- origami ship, box, star (see appendix 4)
- multi-colored soft drawing pencils
- multi-colored construction paper
- multi-colored small sponges
- multi-colored play dough
- scissors
- glue
- tape
- toothpicks (age specific)

### Vocabulary

Abstract/Free Form: having an intellectual and effective artistic content that depends solely on intrinsic form rather than on narrative content or pictorial representation
Circle: a plane curve everywhere equidistant from a given fixed point, the center
Design: to conceive or fashion in the mind; invent: to formulate a plan for; devise
Figural: consisting of, or forming a pictorial composition of human or animal figures
Form: the shape and structure of an object
Geometry: the mathematics of the properties, measurement, and relationships of points, lines, angles, surfaces, and solids
Natural: present in or produced by nature
Negative Space: “empty” or open space surrounding the shapes
Organic: relating to, or derived from living organisms
Oval: an egg-shaped or elliptical form or figure
Pattern: a consistent, characteristic form, style, or method
Plane: a surface containing all the straight lines that connect any two points on it
Polygon: a closed plane figure bound by three or more line segments
Positive Space: areas that have definite form and shapes
Proportion/al: a part considered in relation to the whole
Rectangle: a four-sided plane figure with four right angles
Shape: the characteristic surface configuration of a thing; an outline or contour
Sphere: a three-dimensional surface, all points of which are equidistant from a fixed point
Space: refers to the distance or area between, around, above, below, or within things. It can be described as two-dimensional or three-dimensional; as flat, shallow, or deep; as open or closed; as positive or negative; and as actual, ambiguous, or illusory
Square: a plane figure having four equal sides
Symmetry: exact correspondence of form and constituent configuration on opposite sides of a dividing line, plane, or about a center or, an axis
Three-dimensional: having, or appearing to have, height, width, and depth
Triangle: the plane figure formed by connecting three points not in a straight line by straight line segments
Two-dimensional: having height and width, but no depth; flat

### Procedures

**Introduction - Analyzing**- Did someone or something make this pencil/your shoes?
- Are there many of these pencils/shoes?
- Do they come in many colors and sizes?
- Can we buy this pencil/shoes?
- Can we use this pencil/shoes?
- Who’s idea was it to make this pencil/shoes?
- Does this pencil/shoes have shape?

- Can I make a pencil/pair of shoes that is one of a kind?
- Does my special pencil/pair of shoes have to be useful?

**Activity – Creating**

**Conclusion – Evaluating**

- Does it have shape? What shapes?
- Is there a pattern?
- Does it look like something you know?
- How was the actual object made? By adding shapes? By cutting shapes?

- Is it figural or abstract?
- Where might you see something designed like this?

### Assessment

**Student Assessment:**

**Teacher and Lesson Plan Assessment:**

- Did the teacher describe and lead the lesson plan in a comprehensive and inclusive manner?
- Were the lesson goals reached and was the level of student comprehension and participation age appropriate?
- What objects/shapes/materials were successful as examples and motivators for the activity?
- Which objects were not used?
- Did students have enough time to analyze, observe, discuss and create?
- Were students able to use the evaluation to draw their own conclusions and discuss/present some of the lessons goals?
- What needs to be changed or adjusted and why?

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