Activity Introduction

Quick summary: In this lesson, students will consider what makes an ideal ‘place’. They will explore an outdoor place in their school then work to a design brief to design and draw an ideal place in the school. Students will practise texture rendering techniques and apply them to their design. They will annotate their design and write an artist statement to justify the design choices made. Students will reflect on the process in a peer-review exercise.

Faber-Castell have long understood the importance of creativity to all people, especially to young people. They are also continuously searching for environmentally friendly processes and high-quality materials to enhance children’s creative experience throughout every development phase. For more information about Faber-Castell, click here.

Learning intentions:

  • Students understand that a place can have an effect on them.
  • Students understand how to follow a design brief.
  • Students learn how to apply a range of colour pencil and fine liner techniques.

21st century skills:

Australian Curriculum Mapping

Content descriptions: 

Year 5 & 6 Visual Arts 

  • Develop and apply techniques and processes when making their artworks (ACAVAM115)
  • Plan the display of artworks to enhance their meaning for an audience (ACAVAM116)

Syllabus outcomes: VAS 3.1, VAS 3.2.

General capabilities: Literacy, Critical and Creative Thinking, Ethical Understanding.

Cross-curriculum priority: Sustainability OI.4, OI.5.

Relevant parts of Year 5 & 6 Visual Arts achievement standards: Students explain how ideas are represented in artworks they make and view. Students use visual conventions and visual arts practices to express a personal view in their artworks. They demonstrate different techniques and processes in planning and making artworks. They describe how the display of artworks enhances meaning for an audience.

Topic: Sustainability.

Unit of work: Creative Sustainability – Year 5 & 6.

Time required: 60 mins.

Level of teacher scaffolding: High- take the class outside for an observation activity.

Resources required: Student Worksheets – one copy per student. Device capable of presenting a video to the class. Texture Rendering Technique: practice handoutTips for getting your class outside. A3 paper, Colour-Grip Pencils or Junior Grip Pencils, grey lead pencils, fine liners, erasers, sharpeners, rulers.

Keywords: Sustainability, outdoor, nature, texture, design, brief, visual art.

Cool Australia’s curriculum team continually reviews and refines our resources to be in line with changes to the Australian Curriculum.


Teacher Worksheet

Teacher Preparation

Learning intentions:

  • Students understand that a place can have an effect on them.
  • Students understand how to follow a design brief.
  • Students learn how to apply a range of colour pencil and fine liner techniques.

Success criteria: Students can…

  • to a design brief.
  • ...develop ideas for an ideal outdoor place.
  • ...use colour pencil and fineliner techniques to portray different surface textures.


Teacher content information:

Sustainability describes the ability to keep going at the same rate and in the same (or better) condition as before. In order for our world to be able to sustain us, as well as the generations to come, we need to change. It’s time to think differently - and more creatively - about sustainability and the future of our planet.

Creativity and approaching challenges in a creative way has traditionally been seen as a natural gift, but in fact it can be grown just like a muscle. Creativity is like any other skill. It can be

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Student Worksheet

Thought starter: "You can't use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have." – Maya Angelou

1. When in the outdoor place, use the prompts below to help you make some observations:

Where is the place you are observing? 

How do you feel when you are in this place? 

What do you see in this place? 

What do you hear? 

What can you smell? 

What are some positive things that you notice about this place? 

2. Design Brief: 

Design Problem: Your school requires a place that encourages socialising, relaxation, play and learning activities.
Materials: The materials used for the new outdoor area must be natural and/or recycled.

Your design should include designated areas for the following purposes:


 Constraints: The place should 'fit in' with the natural surroundings.

3. Make a list of your design ideas here:

4. Write an artist statement for your design using the prompts below to guide you:

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