Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Handwork has Begun!!! Straw weaving with 3rd Graders

A note from the Art Studio : Donations of yarns to weave with always welcome....And the weaving has grown... started with two straws... some are making 16 straw weavings.. others choosing to stick with just a few .. but all are engaged.... check out the new photos..

Third and fourth graders have begun a unit on Hand-work and Craftsmanship. Third graders have been introduced to straw weaving, and by this, the 2nd week in December most students have been able to make at least one small bracelet size weaving and are beginning to branch out experiment with more straws and various colors and textures of yarns. All children have their very own Straw Weaving kit which consists of a baggie with straws, tape and yarn, all one needs to make a straw loom.  Years ago I found this great, portable lesson in a book. For our introduction to weaving I keep the lesson simple, 2 straws, with the goal of making a bracelet or a collar for a stuffed animal or a pet. Once students have practiced the basis, and learned the basic technique, the possibilities are endless.  If you use 4 straws as the instructions I sent home show, show one can make belts and scarves.

These 3rd graders have been at it about two weeks and stopped into the Art Studio to get more yarns.
I am teaching this lesson before the holidays in hopes the children are inspired to continue weaving at home, in the car, wherever you go during vacation, and also in hopes that a child will feel empowered to make some hand woven gifts.  I have extra yarns available in the Art Studio that your child can come in and take from. Below are some photos of 3rd graders engaged in straw weaving. Note the straws are basic drinking straws which serve to keep the warp threads straight and thus create a loom.

I believe hand-work and craftsmanship associated with it are an important part of a strong visual arts program. There are so many skill sets addressed in this unit from 3D spatial visualization and problem solving, to manual dexterity, and continual problem solving, in addition to envisioning and craftsmanship. Plus, much evidence has been written about the calming and centering nature of traditional handwork, and giving your child the opportunity to have such an outlet at anytime seems like a positive.  Plus such cool, cool projects.  Last year  kids made collars for their stuffies, bracelets, scarves, belts, it was endless.  Straws and yarn, and a positive attitude are all that is needed. I am sure your child can show you how.  Try your hand at it if you get a chance. In addition there are numerous Youtube clips on various methods of straw weaving.
Our passwords for this unit are: Positive Thoughts, Patience, Practice and Perseverance

More photos of weavers in action below:

No comments:

Post a Comment