Look at examples of work by ephemeral artists, e.g. Andy Goldsworthy, and discuss what has been used to create sculptures. Ask children to identify natural materials from a choice of objects and then use the examples to demonstrate an understanding of the terms - texture, shape and colour. Explain that the class will be working in groups outdoors collecting natural materials to create sculptures. As the sculptures are temporary and will remain outside, children will have the opportunity to take photographs as a permanent record of their work.
Go for a walk around your school grounds with children collecting items from the ground, e.g. fallen leaves, petals, twigs, cones, acorns, conkers, seeds, etc.
Allow groups to choose an area to create their sculpture, asking them to empty their buckets first to review their collection of materials. As children make their sculptures, remind them about shapes and textures, etc. Ask children to step away from their artwork half-way through time allowed for making the sculptures. This will give them a chance to look at their work as a whole and give them an opportunity to change, or adapt their work. Use cameras to record their work in progress in addition to completed sculpture.
Give a 5 minute warning to completion time and then ask groups to prepare a short explanation about their sculpture.
Each group is given the opportunity to describe and explain how they worked together using natural materials to produce a sculpture. Children are encouraged to comment using descriptive language and give opinions about others’ work, e.g. ‘I like it because……….’