Looking to Learn: Elaboration Game

Looking to Learn: Elaboration Game

This activity sets the stage for inquiry by encouraging students to look carefully, observe details, and make inferences.

Grade Level:
College, Grades 3-5, Grades 6-8, Grades 9-12
Subject Area:
English, Fine Arts, Visual Arts
Activity Type:
Engagement Activity

Looking to Learn: Elaboration Game

Elaboration Game

Before sharing any object information with students:

Ask the class to think about the art object as being divided into sections.

Ask one volunteer to begin describing what he or she sees in a specific section of the artwork.

Invite another person to elaborate on the first person’s observations by adding more detail about the same section. A third person may elaborate further by adding yet more detail, and a fourth person can add even more.

Repeat this process for each section of the artwork. Support students’ observations by introducing information about the art object into the discussion.

As the game progresses, teachers may take the opportunity to discuss what the artwork conveys about its cultural and temporal context.

Adapted fromArtful Thinking by Project Zero , Harvard University. Used under CC BY-NC 4.0