Students were then shown actual examples of Sorpresas which had been collected during travels to Central America. Sorpresas, which translated to mean “surprises” in English, are tiny sculptures depicting Central American people in daily life activities, and can be found in many countries in Central America. The surprise, which are the sculptures, themselves, are revealed when the sculpture's ceramic cover is removed. The cover usually pertains to the person's activity as depicted in the sculpture.
First graders were instructed to model a small sculpture from colored modeling clay based on a person engaged in some daily activity. Results ranged from shoveling snow to watching television. Some students chose to represent themselves in a scene from their own life. Students were then given a styrofoam cup to decorate and use as the cover for their sorpresas-inspired sculptures.