Home » Teach » Lesson Plans » Imaginary Playground Paper Sculpture

Imaginary Playground Paper Sculpture


In this activity, you will explore different ways to change paper to make a sculpture.

Grade Level

Pre-K, Kindergarten


Paper Sculpture

  • Video
  • Slide Deck
  • Teaching Guide


  • A piece of construction paper for a base
  • Construction paper cut into strips
  • Glue in a cup
  • A craft stick
  • A pencil (optional)


What is a sculpture?

A sculpture is an artwork that has different sides to look at from different points of view, like the top and the side.

Paper is flat, or 2-dimensional. A sculpture is 3-dimensional, or 3D.

How can we make the paper stand up, so it becomes 3D?

What if you take the two ends and push them together? The strip is bending. It makes a curved line.

It’s starting to stand!

How can you make the paper stay standing? We need to give the paper “feet” to stand on. Just make a little fold on each side.

Then, dip the stick in the glue, wipe the drip, and add a little glue to one “foot”. To make it stick, hold it down and count to 3—1, 2, 3. Then glue the other side—1, 2, 3.

It makes a big curve!

* You might need a trusted adult to help you glue your paper strips.

How else can you change the paper to make it 3D? 

You can fold it! If you fold it right in the middle, it makes a triangle shape.

Where will you add it to the base? It can go over or under the curved piece. Remember to fold to make “feet” and press them down to attach to the base.

What does this piece remind you of? It might look a little bit like a slide at a playground! 

I wonder if you can make other parts to make your own imaginary playground!

What do you think will happen to the paper if you fold the strip more than once?

Start at one end and fold one way, then the other way, until you get to the end. It made a zigzag line!

You can use this to make stairs up to the top of the slide!

Let’s try something else. What will happen if you curl a strip of paper around your finger (or a pencil). When you let it go, it makes a spiral!

How else can you change the paper? You can crumple it in your hand?

What do you think these pieces could be in your playground?

Where will you add them?

Turn your sculpture around to add to each side. You can put pieces over, under, or through other pieces.


Turn your sculpture around to look at it from different sides. Look at it from above.

Imagine you are very small. How would you play on this imaginary playground? How would you move through the different spaces?

Choose one piece of your paper sculpture.

How did you make that piece?

Is it curved or bumpy?

Does it go over, under, or through another piece?


Imaginary Playground Paper Sculpture
Written by Andrea Burgay, Associate Director

Lesson Development
Julie Applebaum, Senior Director
Sassy Kohlmeyer, Director of Early Childhood Programs

Studio in a School NYC
Hasna Muhammad, Ed.D., Chair, Board of Directors, Studio in a School Association
Alison Scott-Williams, President, Studio in a School NYC

Copyright © 2023 Studio in a School NYC LLC