Buddha Sculpture

Buddha Sculpture lesson plan

Learn about Buddhism, a philosophy of life that emphasizes wisdom and kindness, which is followed by people around the world.

  • 1.

    Gautama Buddha was born in 563 BC and lived in northern India. The name Buddha means enlightened one. Among the Buddha's basic teachings are the Four Noble Truths and the Eightfold Path. His birthday, the Day of Vesak, is a national holiday in parts of Asia.

  • 2.

    Research more information about the Buddha, Buddhism, the Dalai Lama, and the spread of Buddhism across Asia and around the world. Buddhism adapted to cultures in Tibet, Japan, and Korea, as well as many other areas. Wisdom, kindness, and compassion are at the heart of Buddhism.

  • 3.

    Find pictures of the Buddha as he is represented in historic and contemporary Thailand, Vietnam, India, Indonesia, Singapore, and other Asian countries. From what are these sculptures made? How do they differ? In what ways are they similar?

  • 4.

    Using Crayola® Model Magic, sculpt a Buddha that is similar to one you found in your research. Try to duplicate his posture, placement of hands and legs, clothing, and adornments in your sculpture. Dry.

  • 5.

    Cover your art area with newspaper. With Crayola Watercolors and Watercolor Brushes, paint your Buddha figure in authentic colors. Dry.


  • Students research Gautama Buddha's life and his philosophy that includes the Four Noble Truths and the Eightfold Path.
  • Students gather information about cultures in which Buddhism is widespread, including Japan, Korea, and Tibet.
  • Students find pictures of various portrayals of the Buddha and sculpt a similar representation of his figure.


  • Include Buddha Sculptures in displays that provide a wider picture of the cultures in which they were developed.
  • Find information about the Emerald Buddha in the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand. At each change of the season, the Emerald Buddha's gold robes are changed by the King of Thailand.
  • Interview people who are Buddhists to gain a better understanding of how Buddhist traditions such as meditation are practiced. Find information about the Dalai Lama, prayer wheels, and other traditions.