MATH: Alluring Autumn Arrays

IMG_0084Objective: Students will practice solving word problems while creating monotype prints on Gelli plates.

Vocabulary: Array, rows, columns, factors, multiples

Time: Approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes.

Difficulty Level: *****

What You Will Need: A Gelli Plate or ingredients for creating a homemade gel plate,  tempera, brayer (ink roller), paper and this PDF:array

Preparing for Project:  A Gelli plate may be purchased at many places, including, but if you would prefer to save money a gel plate can be made by mixing 8Tbsp gelatin with 12 oz of glycerin and 1 1/2 cups hot water.  Pour into a 9X13 pan and chill.  When the gelatin has congealed, it will maintain its form in room temperature, and can be used like a Gelli plate. 

Print off a PDF for each student.

Project Time:

1. Each student needs to cut two pages of leaves.  Encourage students to cut on the lines, or the shapes on their final work will be skewed. 

2. While students are cutting out their leaves, you can call students up to print a “background image” for their array.  I used orange and gold to give it a festive feel.  Pour tempera paint onto the gel plate and spread it thin using the brayer.  Students can use their fingers to draw into the paint, or press random shapes into the surface of the plate.  When they are done, lay construction paper over the gel plate and rub gently with your hands.  Remove the paper and your “background print” will be complete.


3.  As students finish cutting out their leaves, begin calling them up to IMG_2384complete their array.  Spread brown tempera paint onto the gel plate and provide the student with one of the 4 word problems found on the PDF.  Ask the student to solve the word problem using the leaves to create an array on the gel plate.

4. Once the student has solved the word problem with the correct array, lay the paper over the plate.  Align the background print with plate as best as possible.  Rub gently with your hands and peel the paper off of the gel plate.



5. For added visual interest, students could create a border with gold paint, making dots with q-tips, or foam cut-outs.  Students could also create another layer using gold paint and actual leaves they’ve collected from the ground. 


Assessment: Post the artwork around the room.  To reinforce the topic, break the students into groups and have them find a work of art the coincides with each of the word problems on the PDF page.