US 3692273 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
PATENTEDSEP 19 L972 sum 1 or 4 PATENTED EP I972 3.692.273
SHEET 3 or 4 PATENTEDSEP 19 m2 SHEET t [If 4 I T F v. MH H VM I u h 1 STANDING EASEL FOR CLASSROOM USE BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to a standing easel designed for classroom use wherein both the drawing panel or panels and the support members therefore furnish structural support for each other and wherein each of said elements is arranged for complete frictional contact along all the bottom edges of each of said elements with the floor of said classroom whereby the easel is stabilized against movement by users. More particularly, this invention relates to easels for use in classrooms with nursery and elementary school-age children who are characterized by a high degree of physical activity such that they can easily knock down the unstabilized, top-heavy, easels of the prior art which have been used in classrooms. This is particularly true where the students in the classroom do not have a prior history of the careful use of instructional equipment and physical objects or are subject to the use of impulsive and/or aggressive behavior.
The classroom easels of the prior art have been characterized by thin support legs and by being topheavy, with the result that when a child in the classroom bumps against or runs into or deliberately pushes any one of these thin support legs, the entire easel can be easily overturned with physical danger to other children. This problem is greater in the case where the easel is designed to be collapsible for storage in substantially flat form. U.S. Pat. No. 1,757,032 to Wilson is representative of this type of prior art with thin support legs, a top-heavy characteristic and a collapsible feature which is deemed unsuitable for use in active classroom situations. 'U.S. Pat. No. 3,195,849 to Maddox illustrates yet another easel of similar construction. The easels represented by this type of prior art may be referred to as standing easels since the drawing panel is connected and supported in a standing position by directly connected support members which contact the classroom floor. Distinguished from this type of easel is the table easel wherein drawing panels are arranged on a table surface for use by students working from either a standing or a sitting position. US. Pat. No. 3,190,603 to Finnemann is representative of this type of prior art.
The drawing panels shown in the prior art do not contact the floor of the classroom and support members of a substantial character have not been deemed necessary, possibly due to the fact that these easels have been mainly used with older groups of students who are capable of greater self-control and exhibit a lower degree of physical activity in the classroom situation. These prior art standing easels all present the liability of injury to students in the classroom and disruption of effort due to their inherently unstable physical structure under conditions of marked student activity.
Another limitation with respect to both the standing easels and the table-type easels of the prior art is that they did not provide for a plurality of students to have individual drawing areas on the easel so that the easel could be used by a number of students working in an individual capacity at the same time. The above-referredto Finnemann Patent would permit a number of students to work side-by-side on a common drawing area but this arrangement would distract students from their own work since they would be placed in a large visual stimulus field presented by the drawings of all the other students on that common drawing area as well as by the contiguous social contact with other students themselves. The prior art standing easels could not accommodate possibly two or three students working closely in a side-by-side manner on a common drawing area under the aforesaid limitations.
Accordingly, itis an object of the present invention to provide a standing ease] for classroom use which will provide either a single child or a multiple number of children with individual drawing panels and which will be stabilized against movement by the users or disruption of ones efforts by other classroom members.
Another object of this invention is to provide a standing easel wherein at least one drawing panel is supported by at least two support members and wherein said drawing panel and said support members are each arranged for complete frictional contact with the floor of the classroom and each of said elements furnishing structural support for one another whereby the easel is stabilized against movement or collapse by accident or intention. The stability feature of the present invention also increases overall stability which is important for purposes of drawing, painting and writing. The increased stability minimizes normal vibration and movements inherent in an active work situation.
Yet another object of the present invention is to provide a structurally stable standing 'easel for individual use by a plurality of children who are characterized by having nursery or elementary school status and possess a high degree of physical activity in classroom situations to minimize danger from falling.
Another object of the present invention is to provide disengagable means and foldable means for the easels whereby certain elements may be disengaged from the remaining elements and the remaining elements folded into substantially flat units for storage or shipment.
These and other objects and advantages of this invention will become apparent from the following description and claims. The invention can best be understood by reference to the accompanying drawings illustrating several embodiments of the present invention:
DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 shows a perspective view of the preferred embodiment of the standing easel described wherein four individual drawing areas are arranged on the same easel;
FIG. 2 illustrates a side view of the easel of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 illustrates a plan view of the ease] shown in FIG. 1;
FIG. 4 shows a front perspective view of a first modification of the easel shown in FIG. 1 wherein a single drawing area is provided for one student;
FIG. 5 shows a rear perspective view of the single student easel illustrated in FIG. 4;
FIG. 6 shows an enlarged sectional view taken on line 6-6 of FIG. 4;
FIG. 7 shows a second modification of the easel show in FIG. 1 wherein individual drawing areas for up to six students are provided by the easel;
FIG. 8 shows a perspective view of a third modification of the standing easel shown in FIG. 1 wherein two drawing areas are provided;
FIG. 9 is a side view of the easel illustrated in FIG. 8;
FIG. is a front view of the easel illustrated in FIG.
FIG. 11 is a plan view of the easel illustrated in FIG.
FIG. 12 is a perspective view of the easel illustrated in FIG. 1 with disengagable means and foldable means provided for the easel;
FIG. 13 shows and exploded perspective view of the easel illustrated in FIG. 12 wherein the disengagable means are shown in disengaged position;
FIG. 14 shows one-half of the easel elements of the easel of FIG. 13 collapsed into substantially flat form; and
FIG. 15 shows the remaining one-half of the easel illustrated in FIG. 13 collapsed into substantially flat form.
PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring now to FIG. 1, a standing easel designed for used by four students is illustrated. A first truncated, wedge-shaped drawing panel 21 is connected to a second drawing panel 22 of the same shape by means of a first support member 23 and a second support member 24, both of which are of truncated wedge shape. The connection between these four elements of easel 20 are such that the base of easel 20 defines a substantially greater area than the area defined by the upper edges 25, 26, and 28 of the drawing panels and the support members (as shown in FIG. 3).
While support members 23 and 24 serve to connect drawing panels 21 and 22 as above described, they also function as drawing boards since they are of the same planar panel configuration as each of the drawing panels 21 and 22. Each of the drawing panels 21 and 22 and each of the support members 23 and 24 are provided with downwardly pointing, wedge-shaped panel extensions 29 and 30 (shown in dotted lines), 31 and 32, respectively, in order to increase the drawing areas provided by the drawing panels to nearly the full base width of the drawing panels and support members. These panel extensions are formed contiguously connected to their respective drawing panels to increase the drawing area provided thereby.
Each of the drawing panels 21 and 22 and each of the support members 23 and 24 can be provided with a paper-holding means such as illustrated by clips 33 and 34 and trays 35 and 36 which can be positioned as shown toward the bottom portions of each of the drawing panels and support members and can extend across the entire width of the panel or member, if desired. A sheet of drawing paper 37 is shown being held by clip 33 on drawing panel 21. The trays 35 and 36 are provided for the conventional purpose of holding drawing instruments.
AS instructions holding means is provided for the drawing area provided by support member 24 as shown by the raised and outwardly tilted rectangular display board 38 which is attached to the upper edge of support member 24 and the panel extension 32 thereof. If desired, display boards can be provided for each drawing area of the easel 20. The interior space of easel 20 can be utilized by providing therein a materials storage means for the drawing paper 37 or for other materials such as painting sets or other drawing and writing instruments. A storage means 39 is connected to the interior surface of support member 23 which is shown by the topmost portion thereof.
Referring now to FIG. 2, with the drawing paper removed clip 33 is seen resting in vertical track 40 which is provided in drawing panel 21. By providing a vertical track, clip 33 may be adjusted vertically to hold different sizes of drawing paper 37 by adjusting conventional securing means such as a thrumbscrew on the undersurface thereof (not shown). This side view shows the outward tilt of board 38 of the instructions holding means and also shows a retaining clip 41 attached thereto. Holding means 42 is shown on the drawing area of support member 24 and the holding means above-described as clip 34 is seen on the opposite side of the extension panel 29 in dotted lines. The extension portion 30 of drawing panel 22 is also shown in this side view. Storage means 39 is shown by dotted lines connected on the undersurface of support member 23 also shown by dotted lines. As illustrated, this storage means forms a box with an open top in con nection with support member 23. Tray 35 is shown in a fixed position on drawing panel 21 and tray 43 is shown by an end view thereof affixed to drawing panel 24. Tray lip 44 can be seen extending upwardly from the outer portion of tray 35. AS shown on tray 35 the raised upper lip. 45 need not be extended the entire length of the tray 35 unless so desired.
As shown in FIG. 2, each of drawing panel 21 and support members 23 and 24 rest on floor line F and are in complete frictional contact therewith along the entire length of the bottom edges thereof whereby the easel 20 is stabilized against movement by the users thereof or by other persons in the classroom. AS shown by the connection of drawing panel 21 and support member 23 the connection between the support member and the drawing panel is perpendicular but is inwardly inclined from bottom portion 46 to the topmost edge 25 of drawing panel 21. This inwardly inclined line of contact of the support members with each of the drawing panels is uniform whereby the interior surfaces of the drawing panels and the support members form a truncated 4-sided pyramidal polyhedron. In this manner, each of the drawing area of drawing panels 21 and 22 and each of the drawing areas of support members 23 and 24 are presented to each of the users thereof in a vertically inclined direction for greater ease of use. At the same time this inward inclination places the center of gravity of easel 20 exactly in the center of the area described by the base portion 46 of each of the panels and each of the support members therefore. The easel 20 is thereby rendered structurally stabilized against movement by the users. As shown in FIG. 2, extension 30 of drawing panel 22 and extension 29 of drawing panel 21 are formed with curved upper corners 47 and 48, respectively, in order to eliminate the hazard of sharp corners in the classroom.
Referring now to FIG. 3, the lines of connection between drawing panel 21 and support member 23 and support member 24 can be seen by dotted lines as can the lines of connection between drawing panel 22 and support members 22 and 23. The connections between the drawing panels and the support members can be a direct glue line or brackets secured with appropriate means such as bolts, screws of brads. In the modification illustrated in FIGS. 1-3 quarter dowel rods 49 are provided along the inside of each of the vertical lines of connection in order to give greater strength to these connections. The topmost portion of storage means 39 is shown as is the extended lower portion on the undersurface of support member 23 (shown by dotted lines).
The general arrangement of the drawing panels and the support members and the extension thereof form a turbine arrangement wherein the panel extensions 29, 30, 31 and 32 form the blades of the turbine arrangement and the remainder of panels 21 and 22 and support members 23 and 24 form the core of the arrangement. The varying width of the panel extensions provided by the truncated pyramidal polyhedron arrangement of the lines of connection can be seen in both FIGS. 2 and 3.
Also shown in FIG. 3 is the inner surface of board 38 of the instructions holding means which is shown with clip 41 attached thereto. Holding means 50 is illustrated on drawing panel 22 as a clip similar to those described for the other drawing areas illustrated on easel 20.
MODIFIED EASELS Referring now to FIGS. 4 and 5, a single person easel 60 of stabilized form is illustrated. A generally rectangular drawing panel 61 is connected to circular sector shaped support members 62 and 63 (shown in dotted lines). Both of the support panels 62 and 63 are connected in a perpendicular fashion along the lower 75 percent of the edges of drawing panel 61 and serve to support drawing panel 61 in a vertically inclined position. Each of these planar support members has about 30 percent of the panel area of drawing panel 61. A paper holding means 64 is illustrated as clip 65 which is connected to a securing means 66 which can be a magnet where at least the upper portion of drawing panel 61 is of ferrous metal construction or can be a suction cup. Tray 67 is supported on drawing panel 61 by tray support bar 68 which is slidably affixed to two vertically disposed tracks 69 and 70 which are positioned near the right and left-hand edge portions of drawing panel 61 as shown.
A foldable means 71 (shown in dotted lines) is employed to connect drawing panel 61 to support member 62. In the form illustrated, foldable means 71 is an elongated hinge which has one of the elongated leaves thereof secured to drawing panel 61 and the other leaf secured to drawing member 62.
The connection between drawing panel 61 and support member 63, as shown in FIG. 5, is rigid and may be formed by a glue line or appropriate fastener devices such as angles or brackets. A support bar 72 is shown with clamp 73 which is connected to one end of support bar 72 and is designed to clamp portions of both the inner and the outer surfaces of support members 62 in order to furnish structural rigidity therefor. A suitable clamp connection means 74 is provided on the opposite end of support bar 72 in order to secure the same to support member 63. Clamp means 73 can be rigidly secured to support member 62 in order to prevent the accidental unclamping of support bar 72 from the support member of it can be removably connected so that support member 62 can be folded against panel 61 for ease of storage.
The elongated hinge illustration of foldable means 71 can be clearly seen connecting drawing panel 61 to support member 62 in FIG. 5. The holding means 64 and the tray support bar 68 and tracks 69 and are also seen as illustrated by dotted lines. Due to the fact that the entire length of the bottom edges of the drawing panel 61 and the support members 62 and 63 are in complete frictional contact with floor'F, the easel 60 is stabilized against movement by the user thereof as well as by other students in the classroom.
Referring now to FIG. 6, a detailed sectional view of the connection of tray support bar 68 with T-shaped tracks 69 and 70 is illustrated. Track clamps 75 and 76 are provided on both ends of support member 68 with internal channels 77 and 78 provided to accommodate tracks 69 and 70. Spring bias means 79 and 80 are rigidly affixed to the inner surface of channel 77 and channel 78, respectively, in order to exert a continuous force on the outer surfaces of tracks 69 and 70. In this fashion the tray support member 68 can be easily moved to new locations along tracks 69 and 70 as desired and held in a fixed position by frictional force so that tray 67 can be raised or lowered to different elevational heights. Since the paper holding means 64 is also vertically adjustable, easel 60 may be easily used for students of all heights and ages. If desired, the tray may be removed from drawing panel 61 to enlarge the drawing area to the full length of the drawing panel.
As illustrated and described, easel 60 has one foldable support member 62 and one rigid support member 63. Both of the support members can be arranged to be foldable if desired, particularly when adequate connection means are provided for the clamps 73 and 74 so that the easel has a well stabilized configuration in order to prevent movement and collapse by the users thereof.
Referring now to FIG. 7, an easel is illustrated by a plan view thereof wherein six drawing panels 91, 92, 93, 94, 95, 96 (numbered in counter-clockwise fashion) are provided in order to accommodate up to six easel users at the same time. These drawing panels have the same configuration as described above for the drawing panels and the panel extensions of FIGS. 1-3. The drawing panels are interconnected and spaced from each other by six support members 97, 98, 99, 100, 101 and 102. Each drawing panel is supported by the edges of two of the support members as illustrated by contact lines 103 and 104 for panel 91. The configuration of the drawing panels and their connected sup port members is such that their interior surfaces form a 12-sided truncated pyramidal polyhedron. The entire length of the lower-most edges of each of the drawing panels and each of the support members rest in complete frictional contact with the floor surface in order to provide a stabilized easel structure. This sixdrawing panel easel has superior stability by reason of the increased number of elements resting in frictional contact with the floor and the additional weight provided by the larger number of elements having substantial weight.
A pivotal instructions holding means 105 is shown connected to panel 102 for the use of the users of drawing panels 91 and 96. A similar instructions holding means 106 is provided attached to the mid-portion of support member 98 for use by the users of drawing panels 92 and 93. A third instructions holding means 107 is affixed to the mid-portion of support member 100 for use by the users of drawing panels 94 and 95. A paper clamping means (not shown) can be provided in order to hold instructional, written or drawn materials to the surfaces of the rectangular display board 108 of these holding means 105, 106, 107 or an object to be drawn may be retained on the boards, in which case a top shelf (not shown) can be added. The pivotal action of each of these instructions holding means is provided by a fixed pin 109 and a loose end sleeve 110. In use, instructional materials may be clamped onto the display board 108 and viewed by one of the easel users and then the board pivoted approximately 90 to present the same information to one of the adjacent learners. In this manner, easel 90 may be used by three pairs of students who are engaged in a pre-structured program of paired learning which is a new operational learning theory defined in the inventors co-pending application entitled PERCEPTION CONVER- GENCE MEANS FOR PAIRED LEARNING filed with even date hereof.
AS shown, each of the drawing panels have tray 111 affixed thereto which are of the same configuration as those described for FIGS. 1-3.
Referring now to FIGS. 8-1], a third modification of the easel illustrated in FIGS. 1-3 is shown as easel 120. This easel has a first drawing panel 121 and a second drawing panel 122 which are both of truncated wedge shape and which are perpendicularly interconnected by two upwardly pointing wedge-shaped support members 123 and 124 as best shown in FIG. 11. AS shown in this figure, the wedge-shaped support members 123 and 124 slop inwardly as can also be seen in the FIG. 10. The connections between drawing panels 121 and 122 and support members 123 and 124 are rigid connections such as can be formed by the use of appropriate metal fasteners or glue lines. Panels 121 and 122 form an A-frame.
As best illustrated by FIG. 8, the arrangement of drawing panels 121 and 122 and the two support members 123 and 124 are such that the area described by the bottom edges thereof is a relatively large rectangular area compared with the height of the drawing panels. As shown, the entire length of these bottom edges are arranged to maintain complete frictional contact with the floor of the classroom. The drawing panels 121 and 122 are in a fixed contacting relationship at their upper edges. Also attached to these upper edges are instructions holding means 125 and 126 which can best be seen in FIGS. 9 and 11. Each of these holding means consists of a rectangular display board 127 and a clip 128 for providing both of the users of easel 120 with either written or drawn instructional materials.
As in the preferred embodiment illustrated in FIGS. 1-3, the drawing panels are provided with panel extensions 129 and 130 as best shown in FIGS. 8 and which are of the same configuration as in the preferred embodiment. Also, each of the drawing panels is provided with paper holding means 131 which is shown as being a fixed clip. Each of the drawing panels is also provided with a rigidly affixed drawing instruments tray 132 as best shown in FIG. 9.
Referring now to FIGS. 12-15, a third modification of the easel illustrated in FIGS. l-3 is shown as easel 140. In this modification on the connection means between the drawing panels and their support members are of either a disengagable type or a foldable type rather than a rigid connection as shown by dowel rods 49 in FIG. 3. The disengagable connection means allow case] to be divided into two units, each consisting of a drawing panel and a connected support member. The connection means between each of the drawing panels and its associated support member is foldable whereby each of the units can be folded into substantially flat form.
As illustrated, easel 140 is formed form a first drawing panel 141 and a second drawing panel 142 which are interconnected by a first support member 143 and a second support member 144. These drawing panels and support members are of the same configuration and type as above described for FIGS. 1-3. Each of the drawing panels and the support members have affixed thereto an instruments tray 145.
The connection means between drawing panel 141 and support member 143 consists of an elongated hinge which is comprised of a pair of hinge leaves connected, one each, to each of the drawing panels and its support member. The elongated hinge has the knuckles thereof interleaved in a longitudinal direction and the two leaves are held together by a removable hinge pin 146. The elongated hinge is shown by the dotted lines representing the knuckles thereof in FIGS. 12 and 13. A similar elongated hinge and removable pin 147 is provided as the connection means between drawing panel 142 and support member 144. The foldable connection means between panel 141 and support member 144 consists of a pivotal elongated hinge with a fixed hinge pin which is illustrated by the dotted line representation of the knuckles thereof 148. In a similar fashion, an elongated pivotal hinge 149 with a fixed hinge pin is provided as the foldable connection means between drawing panel 142 and support panel 143.
FIG. 13 shows the effect of removing pins 146 and 147 from their respective interlocking knuckles shown in separated fashion as knuckle set 150 and 151 for removable pin 146 and knuckle set 152 and 153 for removable pin 147. When the hinge pins have been removed and the interlocking knuckle sets separated, easel 140 is divided into a first foldable unit 154 comprised of drawing panel 141 and support panel 144 and a second foldable unit 155 comprised of drawing panel 142 and support member 143. The respective foldable units are connected by means of the elongated pivotal hinges 148 and 149, respectively.
FIG. 14 shows unit 154 in the collapsed and substantially flat form which is formed by folding drawing panel 141 and support member 144 together about elongated hinge 148. Knuckle sets 151 and 152 are shown in interleaved position on the opposite side of unit 154 from hinge 148. FIG. 15 shows the identical elements of units 155 in collapsed and substantially flat fonn in the same manner.
The disengagable means illustrated by the elongated hinges and removable pins 146 and 147 can have as a substitution therefor at least one magnetic bar attached to each of a drawing panel and its associated support member wherein each magnetic bar has rows of teeth which are spaced for interlocking and mating with each other in much the same fashion as the knuckles of the elongated hinge interleave with one another. In this modification, the two magnetic bars should have opposite polarities and the two units 154 and 155 can be physically pulled apart and collapsed about the pivotal hinges 148 and 149 which serve as the foldable means therefor. Another form of a magnetic disengagable means is a bar magnet which can replace one of the knuckle sets and a magnetizable metal strip which can replace the other knuckle set.
By using either of the above-described disengagable means and foldable means, the easel illustrated in FIGS. 1-3 can be folded into two substantially flat units for storage and shipment. The collapsible easel 140 illustrated in FIG. 12 has the same structural characteristics as does the preferred embodiment easel 20, since the disengagable means shown in that figure are not capable of pivotal action due to the truncated pyramidal form thereof.
The construction materials for the easels described are preferably plywood with painted surfaces. They can be equally well constructed of plastic or metal elements and particularly when holding means 66 is a magnet (in FIG. 4) the upper portion of drawing panel 61 must be constructed of a magnetizable metal.
The connections between the various elements of these easels can be of any conventional means such as metal fasteners, glue lines and the like.
If desired, the disengagable and foldable means illustrated in FIGS. 12-15 can be employed for the modification illustrated in FIG. 7 as well as for the preferred embodiment. Also, movable and removable instrument trays as shown inFlGS 4 and can be used with any of the drawing areas disclosed herein. Another variation is that standing easels may be designed with any number of individual drawing areas such as three, four, five and seven or more, according to the obvious modifications of this invention.
While the invention has been described in connection with different embodiments thereof, it will be understood that it is capable of further modification, and this application is intended to cover any variations, uses or adaptations of the invention following, in general, the principles of the invention and including such departures from the present disclosure as come within the known or customary practice in the art to which the invention pertains, and as may be applied to the essential features hereinbefore set forth and as fall within the spirit and scope of the invention or the limits of the appended claims.
What is claimed is:
l. A standing easel for students to draw upon in classroom use comprising at least one drawing panel and at least two support members spaced from each other and connected to said drawing panel, said drawing panel and said support member furnishing structural support for each other and each arranged for frictional contact with the floor of said classroom to stabilize said easel against movement by users and to provide increased overall stability for student use thereof, and said drawing panel and said support members inwardly inclined toward the center of said easel from the bottom portion to the top portion thereof.
2. An easel as defined in claim 1 wherein at least one of said support members comprises a panel of approximately 30 percent of the area of said drawing panel.
3. An easel as defined in claim 1 wherein said drawing panel is rigidly connected to at least one of said sup port members.
4. An easel as defined in claim 1 wherein said drawing panel is connected to at least one of said support members by a foldable means which permits said support member to collapse into a substantially flat relationship with said drawing panel for storage and shipment.
5. An easel as defined in claim 4 wherein said foldable means permits pivotal movement of said support member with respect to said drawing panel.
6. An easel as defined in claim 1 wherein said drawing panel is inclined from vertical direction when said easel rests on the floor of said classroom.
7. An ease] as defined in claim 1 wherein said support members are perpendicularly connected to said drawing panel.
8. An easel as defined in claim 1 wherein an instructions holding means is connected to said easel.
9. An easel as defined in claim 1 wherein a storage means for storing easel materials is connected to the inward side of at least one of said drawing panel and said support members.
10. An easel as defined in claim 1 wherein a tray is connected to the drawing surface of said drawing panel for the storage of easel drawing instruments.
11. An easel as defined in claim 10 wherein said tray is movable with respect to said drawing panel.
12. An easel as defined in claim 1 wherein a holding means is connected to said drawing panel for holding drawing paper on said panel.
13. An easel as defined in claim 12 wherein said holding means is movable with respect to said drawing panel.
14. A standing easel for students to draw upon in classroom use comprising at least two drawing panels interconnected and spaced from each other by at least two support members, said support members spaced from each other, each of said panels and said support members arranged for frictional contact with the floor of said classroom to increase overall stability of said easel against movement and said support members furnishing structural support for said drawing panels whereby individual drawing areas are provided for at least two students, and said drawing panels and said support members interconnected to form at least in part a pyramidal polyhedron.
15. An easel as defined in claim 14 wherein two drawing panels are interconnected and spaced from each other by two support members, said support members being planar panels and functioning as drawing surfaces in order to provide said easel with four independent drawing areas.
16. An easel as defined in claim 15 wherein the drawing area of at least one of said drawing panels extends beyond the connection of said panel with at least one of the two adjacent and connected support members whereby said drawing area is larger than the area of the side of said truncated pyramidal polyhedron.
17. An easel as defined in claim 15 wherein the drawing areas of both of said panels extend past the connections of each of said panel with one of the two interconnecting support members and wherein the drawing areas of each of said support members extend past the connections of each of said members with one of the two interconnected drawing panels whereby each of four easel users has an individual drawing area and by moving through an arc of approximately 45 in either direction, each of the users can view the two adjacent drawing areas.
18. An easel as defined in claim 14 wherein two drawing panels are interconnected and spaced from each other by two support members, said drawing panels being connected to each other by the top edge thereof in an A-frame configuration, the drawing areas of each of said drawing panels extending beyond the connection of at least one of said support members with said drawing panel.
19. An easel as defined in claim 14 wherein at least six drawing panels are connected and spaced from each other by at least six interconnected support members, and the interior surfaces of said panels and said support members forming a truncated pyramidal polyhedron having at least 12 sides.
20. An easel as defined in claim 19 wherein at least three instructions holding means are mounted on said easel at a position between alternating pairs of drawing panels whereby the users of each pair of panels can work cooperatively from a single set of instructions.
21. An easel as defined in claim 14 wherein foldable means are provided between at least one drawing panel and at least one connected support member and wherein disengagable means are provided on the op posite edges of said drawing panel and said support member whereby said drawing panel and said support member can be disengaged from the remaining easel elements and collapsed into a substantially flat unit.
22. An easel as defined in claim 21 wherein said disengagable means comprise at least one magnetic bar attached to each of said drawing panel and said support member, each bar having rows of teeth spaced for interlocking and mating with other magnetic bars attached to said remaining easel elements at the point of v disengagement and said other magnetic bars having opposite polarities from the magnetic bars attached to said drawing panel and said support member.
23. An easel as defined in claim 21 wherein said disengagable means comprise at least one hinge pair comprising a pair of leaves having knuckles perforated in a longitudinal direction, and a removable pin extending through the perforations in said knuckles.
24. An easel as defined in claim 21 wherein said foldable means are pivotal hinges.