We began by looking at famous buildings from around the world: Eifle Tower, Notre Dam, Space Needle, Freedom Tower, Burj Al Arab, Taj Mahal, Tower of Pisa etc. Studentswere fascinated by these buildings asking questions like what are they for where are they located! I had to pull down a map of the world so I could point out places!
We talked about details. I asked the class what book they’re reading in class. Tell me some details about the story. You wouldn’t tell me the whole book, you can tell me who the main character is, where is takes place, etc. These are details.
Looking at each building what detail stands out? Pick a detail that you can draw and draw it on a big paper but small. I folding a larger paper in half to make a booklet, so they drew this detail step on the cover. Students had photographs of all the buildings on each table to share. They had to draw about 5 details from 5 different building, labeling each one so they knew where they came from.
Next step was to take the details and combine them into a new building. They’d use the inside of their folder booklet or if you use sketchbooks this is perfect for building ideas (pun intended). So they could use the top of the Taj Mahal, middle of the Tower of Pisa, bottom of the Eifle Tower. They could sketch a couple of ideas and choose they’re favorite.
Once the sketch was completed they transferred designs to watercolor paper. Pencil first, outline in sharpie. I let them paint with watercolors anyway they wanted to.
When done, they wrote about their buildings describing how they made it what famous buildings they used. They made up building names and what the building was made for. What went on inside their buildings.
Creating the city was super fun. Since the city was imaginary anything could go in the sky. They made spaceships, blimps, multiple suns, etc.