Students were introduced to the work of Claes Oldenburg through a teacher-made PowerPoint presentation and by viewing images of his work on his website. Excited by the prospect of "supersizing" an ordinary object, students brainstormed to come up with ideas.
Once they'd made a decision on which object to sculpt, they brought in a variety of items the next class period. And then art class turned into math class as they set up ratios as a first step in creating proportionately realistic sculptures.
Most students found that using centimeters--rather than inches--worked best for precise measurements, but they were free to use either or both.
To get circular shapes that were much bigger than the compasses that we had, students determined the length of the radius of the desired circle, and drew several lines of that length from a center point on a piece of newspaper. They held a piece of yarn on the center of the paper and used a pencil (onto which the yarn was tied) to create a large circle. This worked remarkably well.
They placed the newspaper patterns on scrap pieces of cardboard, traced around the patterns and then carefully cut out the basic shape of their object. The cardboard forms were built up in preparation for papier-mache'.
Students used one layer of newspaper papier-mache' and then used a layer of paper towels for the final coat.
Next they practiced sketching out words that would be painted onto their object to make it appear more realistic.