Grade Level

5-6, 7-8


Classes are 46 minutes long. Project took 6 days from intro to end.


-construction paper
-tempera paint
-bubble wrap
-paintbrushes or brayer to apply paint to bubble wrap
-foam board cut into small pieces (to create a 3D, relief effect)
-regular glue
-hot glue
-some used X-Acto knives to cut small details


Mixed media

Lesson Objectives

The student will…
create an original onomatopoeia paper relief sculpture inspired by Roy Lichtenstein.

Introductory Activity

Use the Google Slide presentation, found in the lesson’s Resource section, to introduce Lichtenstein, pop art, benday dots, and review primary colors.

Have students brainstorm ideas before starting. This will ensure that they do not waste a bunch of paper and it cuts down on wasting time “thinking” when they should be working. Project was created on basic primary colored construction paper (along with black and white).

Lesson Process

Once they have an idea, they should start constructing from the bottom and work their way up through their layers. This will ensure that they are going from big to small. Push their creativity! Don’t just draw basic clouds, lightning bolts, and spike-like shapes. Encourage them to create an image that represents the onomatopoeia they are focusing on. For example, “crash” could have two cars hitting one another. Every single thing should be cut out before gluing together.

Introduce printmaking with bubble wrap to create ben day dot effects. You can have students use extra colors but I only allowed my students to use the primary colors. I’ve taught this technique in two separate ways. One way is to have students use a basic paintbrush and tempera paint to apply the paint. The other option is to teach students how to use a brayer.

After all desired pieces are printed and dried, students will begin attaching their entire sculpture together. You can use cut-up pieces of cardboard or foam board to create a 3D layer (slight relief) effect. I supervised my students while they used a hot glue gun to assemble the foam pieces. Regular glue might not be strong enough.


Brayer, printmaking, Pop Art, benday, onomatopoeia, middle school lesson


Google doc link for presentation

Author & Website/Blog

Ashley Mills

Supporting Images