Synthesizing, Analyzing, and Creating

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We ask the students to synthesize their learning by trying to create a hexagonal prism net out of cardboard. Edgardo struggles with the shape of the sides of the prism. He immediately assumes the sides must be hexagons as well as the base. This turns out to be a common error.

HE ATTEMPTS to close the prism solid. The points from the sides prevent him from closing it up properly. After he discovers the edges are in the way, he observes a hexagon. He is challenged to remove something from the sides. Edgardo trims them and has success.

HE IMMEDIATELy SHARES his learning with another student who also struggles with this concept. This empowers them. Students' awareness of geometric prisms and pyramids is now heightened.


WE CONCLUDE that students need an opportunity to understand three dimensionality on a two-dimensional surface. We introduce them to creating the illusion of depth through drawing by using geometry vocabulary to reinforce the math aspect of art. For example, students draw triangles and cut off the tips to create trapezoids.


WE ASSESS students' drawing skills and begin to plan their architectural project.

WE DEVELOP an architecture challenge that will prepare them for the unit's culminating field trip and also serve to help students synthesize their art and math learning.

© 2010 Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, Scottsdale,AZ / Artists Rights Society (ARS), Ny

THE STAGE IS SET by introducing Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater, kaufmann House, Mill Run, Pa., 1935-39. Students do a close read of the work and then infer meaning using the art elements and principles vocabulary. They notice forms/ solids, like rectangular prisms and the texture of the nature surrounding the building. They discover the concept of contrast, then begin to infer the meaning behind the structure and its surrounding: "The water goes down, the prisms go across," "That's horizontal," "Look at the rocks, they are horizontal too." After we contextualize the work of Frank Lloyd Wright for them, students begin to understand his profound desire to create geometric forms inspired by nature.

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