When Leonardo was commissioned to paint a picture of the Last Supper on a chapel wall, he decided to break artistic conventions of the time and try new techniques and compositions. In addition to choosing to paint in tempura , rather than traditional fresco, Leonardo also focused on the facial expressions of each of the 12 disciples, at the exact moment when Christ announced that one of them would betray him, to depict Judas.

Leonardo used one point perspective, which involves all the lines in the painting converging in one place, known as the vanishing point. This strategy was used to emphasize the importance and central position of Christ. The lines all converge in his right eye, drawing the viewers gaze to this place. Students will learn how to compose art using one-point perspective to show three dimensional images on a two-dimensional plane. Angles and measurement become valuable tools in this process. This unit will also relate back to Mona Lisa in looking at the symmetry of the composition and groupings of the disciples.


Shape and Space (3D/2D):

  • Use visualization and symmetry to solve problems involving classification and sketching.
  • Classify triangles according to the measures of their angles
  • Recognize and appreciate optical illusions.

Shape & Space (Measurement)

  • Recognize angles as being more that 90 degree, equal to 90 degrees, less than 90 degrees, equal to 180 degrees, greater than 180 degrees.
  • Estimate and measure angles, using a circular protractor.
  • Sketch and draw an angle when the degree measure is specified.
  • Classify given angles as acute, right, obtuse, straight and reflex.
  • Identify and compare examples of angles in the environment.

Level Three (Grade 5 and 6):

  • Analysis - Students will study and analyze the individual character of natural objects or forms.
  • Appreciation - Students will interpret artworks for their symbolic meaning.
  • Main Forms and Proportions - Students will modify forms by abstraction, distortion and other transformations.
  • Actions and Viewpoints - Students will refine methods and techniques for more effortless image making.
  • Qualities and Details - Students will employ surface qualities for specific effects.
  • Emphasis - Students will create emphasis through use of structural devices and strategies.
  • Unity - Students will create unity by integrating the parts of a composition into the whole.

© T. Green and K. McKie 2002