Every school year I do a unit on functional art. This year we did lunchboxes. In the past I have done benches, clocks, chairs, and birdhouses. (Click to read those posts.)
I started out with a short slide show of different photos of lunchboxes I grabbed off the internet. The first one was your typical plain lunchbox.
I started a discussion on what does it need to function as a lunchbox?
Answers: Latch, zipper, or Velcro to open and close it. Handle or strap to carry it. Large enough to hold food.
Then I showed several character lunchboxes and we segued into the definition of copyrighted material. In addition to character lunchboxes there are many whimsical and unique boxes and bags available. Definitely functional art! Just do a Google search to create your own slide show.
Students were directed to fold 18x12" paper in half. Their choice as to which direction to create a long box (hotdog fold) or short box (hamburger fold). Outside would be the design and inside would contain a healthy lunch. I did this with 2nd to 5th grade.
I love how they came out! Sorry there aren't more pictures, don't always get to it.
Thanks for reading! What lesson do you do for functional art?