Unknown Soldier Diorama

Unknown Soldier Diorama lesson plan

Honor Unknown Soldiers with a memorial. Make a replica of a landmark tomb or design an original structure.

  • 1.

    Research the Internet for information about tombs for unknown soldiers in countries including Canada, France, the United States, and Australia. Sketch your design for a memorial to an unknown solder with Crayola® Colored Pencils, or use a picture for reference if you are making a replica of a tomb.

  • 2.

    Cover your art area with newspaper. On white construction paper or watercolor paper, use Crayola Watercolors and Watercolor Brushes to create a background or base for your diorama. You might choose a park-like scene with trees and bushes, an open sea, or some other setting. Dry.

  • 3.

    Using white Crayola Model Magic, create the structure to honor an unknown soldier. To create a marbled effect, lightly knead color from a Crayola Washable Marker into some white Model Magic. For a granite effect, add marker color and some aquarium gravel. Experiment with creating other stone looks. Dry.

  • 4.

    With Crayola Fine Tip Markers, write the inscription found on the tomb on white construction paper. Cut it out with Crayola Scissors. Attach it to the tomb with Crayola School Glue.

  • 5.

    On white construction paper, draw details of the memorial. For example, in the U.S. there are three marble slabs found on the Memorial Plaza in front of the Tomb, representing WW II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War.

  • 6.

    Create a memorial wreath of flowers with Model Magic. To create different colors, rub a marker on it and knead the color into the Model Magic. Continue this process several times to achieve the shade you wish. Glue the wreath to a piece of round cardboard

  • 7.

    On white construction paper, sketch and color an honor guard dressed in the style of military uniform worn in the country where the tomb is located. Cut out the guard.

  • 8.

    Place a recycled box on its side. Glue the watercolor painting inside the box. Glue the other parts of the memorial in place. Dry.


  • Students find out about the history of honoring unknown soldiers in their country, such as the hallowed ground in Arlington Cemetery, Virginia, or elsewhere.
  • Students research the origins and building of the tombs for unknown soldiers in the country of their choice.
  • Students create a diorama depicting a national memorial to unknown soldiers.


  • Offer pictures for reference and if possible plan field experiences for students with special needs or those who may be unfamiliar with these structures. Encourage them to make sketches or take photographs to record what they see.
  • Students sculpt other memorials to historic figures such as the Washington Monument or Lincoln Memorials using Crayola® Model Magic®.
  • Students create a watercolor picture of a large cemetery showing thousands of graves.