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Monday, October 27, 2014

Tunnel Books

No, that's not an accordion...it is a Tunnel Book!

8th Grade Middle School Tunnel Book Art Lesson

Tunnel books are made up of various frames (or pages) and held together by paper that has been folded in an accordion style.  And most importantly...they're awesome!  My friend and fellow art teacher, Jill Maahs shared this lesson with me.  I know that other teachers are familiar with this lesson or something similar, but Jill introduced me to them and I immediately fell in love.  I wanted to teach them to my 8th graders last year but ran out of time at the end of the year, so I was sure to fit it in this time around!  

I started by introducing my students to the concept of tunnel books with an example I made, examples I found online and a little history to them (I found some interesting facts and info on Tunnel Books at Wonderopolis.org).  Then I had the students sketch out their idea for a "story" which could be inspired by movies, books, real life or their imagination.  As long as there was a clear theme, I counted that as a story.  I required each student to include at least one character (human, animal or creature), 3 or more setting details and a detailed background.  These all had to be distributed within a foreground frame, two middle ground frames and a solid (and more detailed) background.  We also discussed how to use the frames and to spread images out for better spacial relationships and story telling.  

Once they had a plan and I approved it, they drew their designs onto 5"x 7" poster board. The first three pages had to have frames around them with and the character or setting details coming off of those frames.  We used X-acto knives to cut away the interior of each page.  Once all  pages had been drawn, colored and the first three pages had their frames cut properly, we folded up construction paper (in an accordion style).  I did not have a required number of folds with the construction paper so some students had more than others.  I just asked that they makes folds that would glue (easily) behind the frames.  Once they had two sheets folded the same way and number of times, they distributed their frames throughout them.  I asked that they glue the accordion folds to the back of each frame (for aesthetics) and that they make sure they have the accordion folds so that the last one will be able to wrap around the back of their background page.  

The range and variety of these tunnel books is phenomenal!  I am in love with how they turned out and am so grateful that I have a display case to show them off in!  


8th Grade Middle School Tunnel Book Art Lesson

8th Grade Middle School Tunnel Book Art Lesson

8th Grade Middle School Tunnel Book Art Lesson

8th Grade Middle School Tunnel Book Art Lesson

8th Grade Middle School Tunnel Book Art Lesson
Percy Jackson Inspired Tunnel Book (Left) and Refrigerator Madness (Right)---Don't you love the egg who is trying not to fall like his buddy did!?!  And the artwork and school papers on the front of the fridge!  So many great details!

8th Grade Middle School Tunnel Book Art Lesson
This student created his tunnel book from the perspective of the catcher.  It is so cool how he considered what you see from inside the catcher's mask!  The glove is right up front and in your hands so it seems the largest and everything else gets smaller!  So creative...and accurate! 

8th Grade Middle School Tunnel Book Art Lesson
Aquatic Adventure

8th Grade Middle School Tunnel Book Art Lesson
Haunted House

8th Grade Middle School Tunnel Book Art Lesson
Sailing Trip

8th Grade Middle School Tunnel Book Art Lesson
Shooting Hoops