Friday, April 29, 2011

Botswana Coil Baskets

8th grade students learned about the Botswana coil basket making tradition and then created their own basket with pre-wrapped paper core and yarn. Students were able to incorporate a design for extra credit. My favorite part of this lesson was having students push the tables to the edge of the classroom and rearrange their chairs in a circle in the center of the room. With this age group being as social as they are it was a nice change to have one large conversation rather than having six going on at one time. I was nervous initially promoting socialization but it turned out to be rather nice and the students were very productive. I should mention however that my class sizes range from 22-15 students and a class of 35 my become overwhelming. Having two circles may be a better option.  

Oaxacan Wood Sculptures

Last month I started a long-term substitute teaching position at North Lakes Academy in Forest Lake, MN. I have been having a blast with this amazing opportunity but have unfortunately have been unable to post in a long time. Above I have posted some photographs of sculptures the 6th graders were working on the first couple weeks I was here. When I arrived they where in the process of gluing the wooded shapes together with wood glue. I awkwardly finished out the lesson mispronouncing "Oaxacan" the whole way through, haha. I thought the sculptures turned out nicely painted and patterned. Very bright and fun, however I wish there was an alternative to the wood glue. It takes so long to dry that the students could only glue one or two pieces on a class period. Made for a lot of misused class time! Any alternative suggestions?