Everyone must work together as a team and combine a few boxes into a 3D sculpture and/or installation that has a theme and incorporates everyone’s efforts and style into one final work.

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Grades 3 – 5

1 Hour & 30 Minutes – Two Hours

Student Work


Don’t worry about anything. Just spend a few minutes reading the lesson plan and printing out your PDFs. Then check out the READY, SET, GO! section and print your prep-page, which includes checklists and an “at a glance” outline of the lesson so you can stay on track when you’re teaching. Set out the materials from the list on your prep page and you’re ready.

That’s all you need to know. Every Step is a different color. Just use your device to Scroll & Teach!

Art Supplies Are Needed

Our lessons are designed to work with very specific supplies (see our supplies page using the button below). We recommend ordering what you need for home delivery. However, you can try and make do with what you have on hand during the health crisis.

Lesson At A Glance

A brief overview of each step. Buttons jump to each section for detailed information.

15 Minutes – Optional warmup, explain project and come up with a list of ideas

20 Min – Create 3D box sculpture

10 Min – Get supplies out

50 Min – Paint the sculpture, taking turns if needed

5 Min – Artists Always Clean

Use this button to jump down to “READY, SET, GO!” – our preparation section at the bottom of each lesson. You’ll find information on what is being taught, a full list of supplies, room prep, and what to expect from your young artist(s).



STEP 1. Intro

A quick drawing can help students move into a lesson in a relaxing way

Tap the button below to start a timer in a new tab/window.

15 Minutes



  • 14″ x 17″ Sketch Paper
  • Ebony Pencil OR
  • Compressed Charcoal
  • Stretchy Eraser OR
  • White Eraser

Have students draw from life using medium sized objects.

Have several large and medium sized objects set out and available to sketch. You can use items such as:

  • A suitcase
  • A chair or stool
  • Basketballs
  • A cooler
  • Toys
  • Kitchen items

While they work, you can explain the project, read the teacher talk, and show the Pinterest board.

“We’re going to work as a team today, and create a collaborative installation. Wow! Those are big words, but they are also very important in the art world. A collaboration is any work that more than one artist works on. We’ll all create ONE piece of art today, as a group.

That means you are not the artist today. You are part of a team of artists. What you want may not be what the group decides upon, and most likely everyone will have to compromise to some degree to make this work. Many jobs require artists to work together like this, so it is good practice.

It also brings new ideas into your own work, which is always good for artists.

You’ve seen paintings and sculptures, but art can also be more than that, taking up not just space, but adding to a space like a room or garden. This is called an installation. It’s more than a sculpture, but less than architecture. Sometimes artists created installations that are architecture but with no function, just form. In other words, there’s no use for it other than to enjoy it.

Let’s look at some installations on the screen, but keep in mind that you can’t really judge any of these unless you are there and experience the actual space and art together. But it will give you an idea of what we’re talking about.”

Teacher Talk

Read verbatim or paraphrase

Pinterest Gallery – Installation Art

Tap the icon to the left to open our special Pinboard showing examples of artwork to display to your student. See our Article for making Pinterest work on larger displays. 

For Students at the Art Scholar Level

CREATIONS LESSON - tap here to open

Foundations are actually what all artists do every single day. However, once you understand them, you can use them more confidently and with more self-expression. It’s like an athlete doing the same events, but better, faster, and stronger. We call the lessons, CREATIONS.

This advanced lesson is for our Art Scholar students who have completed the two years of Foundations and are ready to begin using all that they have learned to create new work. These more challenging versions of the same concepts and techniques are easily taught along-side students in the Foundations course. Even if you have only one student, we put the Creations and Foundations together on the same page for easy review.

Use the Student Instructions printout below for your Art Scholar student(s). Tap the image to open the PDF in a new window.


If you have two or more advanced students, they can create their own version of a collaborative installation work. Otherwise they can join the larger group.

Alternatively, if advanced students have a project they’re wanting to finish, allow them to work.


No reference materials are needed today. 

STEP 2. Construction

Artists will create their 3D box sculpture
20 Minutes



  • Boxes (all sizes)
  • Wide masking tape
  • Hot glue (parent uses)
  • Box cutter knife with a retractable blade (Keep in your pocket at all times not in use by you alone


Help students construct their box sculpture. 

Secure the boxes on all sides and tape shut. Use plenty of hot glue (used by teacher and assistant only)  and masking tape to connect the blocks together. 

Press the tape well.

You can use packing tape, which is usually stronger, but it will not take the paint, so only use it for the boxes and then you must wrap them with butcher paper afterwards.

Hot glue does not take stress, so it should only be used for light-weight decorations or very small boxes. Hot glue also becomes weak if it is moved at all during the cooling process.

STEP 3. Set Up For Paint

Students will get out supplies and prepare their work space
10 Minutes



  • Acrylic paints
  • Brushes
  • Disposable plates or trays
  • Water container
  • Smocks
  • Paper towels

Students set up for acrylic painting.

Ask several people to go get a couple of water tubs filled (you don’t need many), and others to gather smocks. That way you have two or three groups in different areas so you don’t get backed up with lines.

We like to use disposable plates or takeout trays for palettes that can even be passed around. Have students put all the warm colors on one and cool colors on another one to keep the colors bright.

STEP 4. Paint!

Students will enjoy working on their projects
50 Minutes


  • Acrylic paints
  • Brushes
  • Palette pad
  • Water container
  • Smocks
  • Paper towels


Take turns if needed for areas that are close to others. 

Be mindful of the other artists working on the piece.

STEP 5. Clean Up

5 Minutes

Artists Always Clean

Students clean up their work area.

  • Wash hands
  • Super-wash brushes if used. (Run under water for 1 full minute while gently spreading out the bristles).
  • Put art supplies away
  • Wipe tables & toss trash
  • Remove any smocks (last)
  • Check for items on floors and tables


The information you need to make your lesson work



This lesson provides understanding



This lesson shows application and movement


Self Expression

This lesson allows personal freedom


  • Practice and improvement working as a team
  • Understanding how to compromise for the good of the end result
  • Accomplishment in creating a large conceptual installation work
  • Fulfillment by having input


Conflicts – This is a very hard concept at any age, but especially for the younger ones. The purpose is to practice being part of a group decision. A group decision is not about what any individual thinks, no matter how strongly, but what is acceptable to everyone on some level. A conflict always means someone is putting their own agenda in front of the group. However, the main thing is always to enjoy art, so be careful in dealing with conflicts and explaining it to the entire group instead of singling any one person or group out from the others.


• Collaborate – When artists work together on a team project, we call it collaborating, or a collaborative work.

• 3D & Sculpture – When any artwork is viewable at more than one angle, and the nature of the work changes when viewed from those different angles, it is a 3D or sculptural form of artwork. 3D work utilizes the different viewpoints to maximum effect and sometimes creates an environment.

• Installation – Any 3D artwork that a viewer physically enters or feels like is part of the architecture around them, is a form of installation work.


Have a bunch of amazing supplies ready, and cut a few things apart before-hand in a way that make you look amazing.

Print all of your PDFs from the lesson plan and cut any references apart as needed.

What your room needs

Here are your printable lists and room prep instructions.


Opens in new window



  • iPad or TV to display images
  • Water Container
  • Smocks
  • Paper towels
  • Cleaning Wipes
  • Camera or phone-camera
  • Boxes (all sizes)
  • Wide Masking Tape
  • Hot Glue
  • Box Cutter with knife with a retractable blade (Keep in pocket. Teachers only)
  • White butcher paper
  • Scissors
  • Disposable plates or trays
  • Water container
  • Smocks
  • Paper towels




  • Acrylic Paints
  • Brushes