Linda Talking about the paintingLast Saturday we held our monthly Exploring Artism program at the Yale Center for British Art. During our time together, we discussed buildings, architecture, and different methods of construction.

We began our session by going over our Social Story and the museum rules that we must follow. As a warm up, participants were asked to look at this handout and draw a building using paper and markers. Then we took a look at some famous buildings. Here is the PowerPoint that we looked at.

Next, we went into the galleries to take a look at Warwick Castle by Canaletto.

Canaletto. Warwick Castle. 1748-1749.
Canaletto. Warwick Castle. 1748-1749.

When looking at the painting of the castle, participants were asked: What building parts do you see? What building materials do you see? Is it strong? What can you tell us about the castle?

Telling the Story of the Three Little PigsSitting in front of the painting, Linda told the story of the three little pigs. Using pipe cleaners as straw, Popsicle sticks as wood, and Legos as bricks, Linda built a “house” with each material as she told the story. Each participant was handed one pipe cleaner and one Popsicle stick to hold while Linda built the structures. We also created pig and wolf masks for each of the participants to hold while the story was being told. Check out the pig masks here and the wolf mask here. (We printed off the masks on a thick card stock and then glued a Popsicle stick to the bottom of each as a handle).

Coloring an outline of Warwick CastleNext, participants received an outline of Warwick Castle and Art Stix; they were able to create their own Warwick Castle sitting in front of the painting. Here is the outline that we passed out.

Once participants were finished with their 2-D depiction of Warwick Castle, we moved out of the galleries to create a larger 3-D architectural structure. Using cardboard scraps, bubble wrap, Styrofoam scraps, Fast Hold Tacky Glue, and masking tape, participants constructed a building of their own design. Each participant had the opportunity to present their building to the rest of the group at the end of our session.

Creating Buildings

Alex with his building
Alex with his building

The dates for our spring Exploring Artism Programs are January 18, February 15, March 15, and May 17. Be sure to pre-register (at no cost) for our Exploring Artism program. Email the YCBA Education Department or call 203.432.2858 and leave a message. We look forward to seeing you and your family there!

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