Ancient Rome


The Leaning Tower of Pisa is one of the most fascinating structures in Italy. It took hundreds of years to construct. Find out why it tilts.


1. Always work on a clean dry surface. A piece of cardboard or a white paper plate works well for a base.

2. Roll out a handful of Crayola Air-Dry Clay to form a cylinder about 1 ½" thick. This will become the Leaning Tower of Pisa.

3. The tower has 7 sections. Divide your tower in sections by scoring the cylinder with a plastic knife or craft stick. Each floor of the tower has archways all around. Use your thumb or end of a plastic spoon to make indentations to create the arch ways. Make columns on the sides of the archways by rolling small pieces of clay. Press to attach.

4. On top of the tower make a small cylinder to form the top of the building. This is where they usually fly the Italian flag.

5. Place your tower on your cardboard base at the correct angle. Press down to make it stay. If the tower becomes loose after drying, use Crayola No Run School Glue to hold it in place.

6. Surround your tower with background scenery. Make clouds, a sun, people, grass or trees. You might want to research the buildings that surround the tower and recreate them.

7. To add dimension to your tower paint the entire scene with Crayola Tempera Mixing Mediums. This medium will add a stone-like appearance to the clay.

8. Your construction will take several days to dry. Air dry clay dries rock hard. There is no need to fire or bake in a kiln.

Safety Guidelines

Adult supervision is required for any arts & crafts project. Observe children closely and intervene as necessary to prevent potential safety problems and ensure appropriate use of arts and crafts materials. Some craft items, particularly beads and buttons, are potential choking hazards for young children. Avoid use of such small parts with children younger than 3 years. Craft items such as scissors, push pins and chenille sticks may have sharp points or edges. Avoid use of materials with sharp points by children younger than 4 years. Read all manufacturers' safety warnings before using arts and craft supplies.

Crayola Modeling Materials including Crayola Model Magic®, and Model Magic Fusion™, Crayola Air-Dry Clay, and Crayola Dough—

  • Keep away from open flames. Do not use to make candleholders, hot plates, trivets, or other similar objects that will be used or placed near fire and other heat sources.
  • Do not put in an oven, microwave, or kiln.
  • Do not make into vessels/containers that will hold unpackaged food.
  • The use of modeling material to make items that look like food is discouraged for children younger than age 5 to avoid their confusion with real food.
  • Unless sealed with a water-resistant glaze, do not make projects exposed to or immersed in water, such as boats or outdoor bird feeders. They would disintegrate when exposed to moisture.
  • Crayola Dough—contains gluten (wheat flour) as an ingredient.
  • Crayola Air-Dry Clay, Crayola Model Magic and Model Magic Fusion are gluten-free. However, they are produced on the same machinery as Crayola Dough which does contain gluten. Although the machines are cleaned prior to the start of each production run, there is a slight possibility that trace amounts of gluten from Crayola Dough may be present in the other modeling compound products. For information regarding specific ingredients or allergic concerns, please call our Consumer Affairs department at 1-800-272-9652 weekdays between 9 AM and 4 PM Eastern Standard Time.

Wood—By its nature, wood is rough and may contain splinters or sharp points


  • The Leaning Tower of Pisa has a definite recognizable shape. Can students think of any other buildings or structures that are as recognizable? Some examples are The Eiffel tower in France, The Great Pyramids in Egypt, The Great Wall of China.
  • Are their recognizable buildings or structures in the area where you live? When and how were they constructed?
  • Assessment: Discuss how buildings are made today. What are some of the technological advances that have improved the way structures are made?
  • Most buildings are designed by an architect. Have a discussion about architects and what exactly they do. Show some works of famous architects. Frank Lloyd Wright, or Ieoh Ming Pei are two architects who’s works are found around the world.

Related Lesson Plans

Lesson Plans

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crayola supplies
  • Air-Dry Clay
household supplies
  • paper towels
  • recycled cardboard
  • plastic dinnerware
  • plastic cup
  • paint brush (paint brushes)



  • Grades 4 to 6


  • Language Arts
  • Social Studies
  • Visual Arts


  • 30 to 60 minutes


  • Children can learn to interpret information they have found using their reading skills

  • Students learn to analyze different historical structures and how they were built.


Research Canada Standards
Research UK Standards
Research U.S. Standards