Innovation: George Rickey Kinetic Sculpture
South Bend 2009 - 2010

Lesson 6: Motion - 1
Grades K - 2
(an alternate)
Resources: (1) More
pictures of Rickey sculptures; (2) Three 30 second videos of the sculptures

In this lesson, children will first discuss how the wind “moves”
things and will watch a video or visit a Rickey sculpture and discuss its motion.
They then will make an item that can be moved by the wind from found materials.

 Goals and Objectives:
Children will develop understanding of motion caused by the wind as they problem-solve how to make a wind sculpture.

  Introduction/Anticipatory Set:
  • You may want to begin by reading Pat Hutchins Book, When the Wind Blows or another book that features the wind.
  • Ask the children to brainstorm things that move in the wind—
    encourage them to include some things that are designed to be moved by the wind or air such as pinwheels and windmills.
  • windblown motions (flap, drift, whirl, twirl, spin, rotate, etc)
  Lesson Part 1:
  • Show a video of a Rickey sculpture; you may also be able to find a video of a windmill.
  • Use a turn and talk or small group discussion to get children to generate questions
    and comments about how the Rickey sculpture moves and how it is the same
    and different from other things they have talked about as being moved by the wind
  Challenge the children
  • to make their own wind sculpture, using a collection of materials you provide;
    to encourage their imagination, use found or recycled materials
    but do include some items such as discs or items that will make spinners.
    You may want to allow children more than one day so they can test and perfect their sculptures
  • Arrange a classroom museum of the children’s sculptures.
    You may want to have a small fan to provide the “wind”
    As groups present their final product, ask them to talk about how they decided what to do,
    what problems they had and how they solved them, and what they like about their final product.
    Remind them that an important part of being an artist or a scientist is figuring out how to solve problems.

K.3.2 Investigate that things move in different ways, such as fast, slow, etc. (Core Standard)
1.3.4 Investigate by observing, and then describe how things move in many different ways,
such as straight, zigzag, round-and-round, and back-and-forth. (Core Standard)
1.6 Students begin to understand how things are similar and how they are different.
They look for what changes and what does not change and make comparisons.
2.3 Students investigate, describe, and discuss their natural surroundings. They wonder why things move and change.
K.4-8.4 Students identify common objects around them and describe their geometric features and position (geometry)