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3-D Pointillism

A new twist on an old favorite- 3-D pointillism! Students explore the artwork of Georges Seurat and create a masterpiece.

  • Grade 3
    Grade 4
    Grade 5
  • Multiple Lesson Periods
  • Directions

    1. Invite students to explore the work of Georges Seurat, a French painter who mastered the technique known as pointillism. This technique is described as painting with dots.Provide students with a variety of text and electronic resources to learn about Seurat's life and professional career. .
    2. Gather paintings by Seurat such as "A Sunday Afternoon on The Island of La Grande Jatte" which features a lakeside landscape of a crowded park. Have students discuss what they are viewing. How did Seurat use the dots of color to create his paintings? What colors did he use to create grass, water, and sky? How can you mimic Seurat’s technique in your drawing?
    3. Once the discussion has drawn to a close, ask students cover a sheet of heavy paper such as oak tag, posterboard, or foam board with a thin, flat layer of white Model Magic®. Invite them to add color to this blank canvas using Seurat's pointillism technique.
    4. Ask students to consider their favorite outdoor place. Use Model Magic to make a landscape of their own! Have students plan ahead by making a sketch with crayons or colored pencils so they’ll know what color dots to use in each area of their landscapes.
    5. On a flat surface, students flatten a small amount of Model Magic to be about as thick as their fingers. Remind students to tightly cover the remaining Model Magic in the container to prevent it from drying.
    6. Press a Model Magic cap firmly into the flattened Model Magic. Remove the Model Magic from the cap, shape it into a small ball and press it gently onto the sheet. Model Magic that is fresh from the pack will stick to itself. Dried pieces can be glued on. Repeat to cover the entire sheet with colorful dots to form the picture, leaving as few blank spaces as possible.
    7. Encourage students to be creative! Use brilliant colors and patterns to add excitement to landscapes. Allow time for Model Magic to dry.
    8. While landscapes are drying, have students compose a paragraph describing the location of their landscapes and why these were favorites. Display landscapes with student writing.
  • Standards

    LA: Read with sufficient accuracy and fluency to support comprehension.

    LA: Conduct short research projects that build knowledge about a topic.

    LA: Participate in shared research and writing projects (e.g., read a number of books on a single topic to produce a report; record science observations).

    LA: Ask and answer questions about what a speaker says in order to clarify comprehension, gather additional information, or deepen understanding of a topic or issue.

    LA: Report on a topic or text, tell a story, or recount an experience with appropriate facts and relevant, descriptive details, speaking clearly at an understandable pace.

    SS: Describe ways in which language, stories, folktales, music, and artistic creations serve as expressions of culture and influence behavior of people living in a particular culture.

    SS: Use appropriate resources, data sources, and geographic tools to generate, manipulate, and interpret information.

    SS: Identify and describe ways family, groups, and community influence the individual's daily life and personal choices.

    VA: Use different media, techniques, and processes to communicate ideas, experiences, and stories.

    VA: Use visual structures of art to communicate ideas.

  • Adaptations

    Possible classroom resources include: Sunday with Seurat by Julie Merberg; Katie's Sunday Afternoon by James Mayhew

    Challenge students to use various colors of Crayola Model Magic Presto Dots to create their landscapes.

    Students create their landscapes in 3-D by adding layers of dots to create depth or a focal point in the drawing.

    Working in teams of two, students research a famous city, building, landform, etc. Students compose a one-paragraph summary of their research which does not identify the city, building, landform, etc. specifically. Student teams orally read their summary to classmates who sketch their interpretation of the reading. Next, students attempt to re-create the city, building, landform, etc. in Presto Dots. Name the location. How well did your classmates do?


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  • Creativity.
  • Capacity.
  • Collaboration.
  • Change.
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