Abstracted Landscape Weavings

Grade Level: 9-12, 25-30 students per class

Curriculum Links: History and Social Studies

Classroom Time: 6 weeks, 60 min. meeting once a week

Materials:  

o   Demonstration Materials:

o   Images:

o   (1) Black and Gold Kente Cloth, (2) Kente Cloth, Ghana, (3) Master Weaver Ekooba Gyasi, (4) Traditional Manta of Chinchero, (5) Peruvian Weaver on a Loom, (6) Weaving a Belt, (7) Red and White Peruvian Weaving, (8) Multiple Peruvian Weavings, (9) Peruvian Weavers, (10) Eye Dazzler Blanket, (11) Ye’ii Bichell Rug, (12) Navajo Star Weaving

o   Example sunset weaving

o   Example sunset image

o   Example template

o   Example cityscape image

o   Blackboard

o   Chalk

o   Process Materials:

o   Calendars:

o   Scenic Landscapes, Around the World, Golf Courses, Islands, Inspirations

o   Other Images: Mountain Mist, Ocean Waves, Ocean Kelp, Buggy, Arial Farmland, Arial City, Rocky River, Forest, Desert, Storm

o   60 pieces of sketch paper

o   30 pencils

o   6 packs of colored pencils

o   30 -  8 x 10 inch cardboard boards

o   30 rulers

o   6-10 scissors

o   6 spools of thick warp thread

o   6 roles of masking tape

o   Yarn; variety of textures, thicknesses, colors,

o   30 – 2 x 5 inch cardboard shuttles

o   30 - 10 inch sticks

o   30 – 10 inch dowel rods

o   Tempera Paint: silver, gold, white, black (one bottle of each color)

o   30 paint palettes or paper plates to use as a palette

o   30 paint brushes

o   6 containers for water

o   Extension: large amount of various objects to attach: beads, feathers, shells, acorns, pinecones, leaves, buttons, bottle caps, can tabs, coins, gum or candy wrappers, etc.

Objectives: The students will

o   Gain a basic understanding of the importance of weaving in African, Peruvian, and the Navajo cultures

o   Create a basic loom weaving

o   Abstract images into basic shapes

o   Choose colors appropriately representational colors

Motivation:

            What do you think of when you hear the word “weaving”?  Class will brainstorm ideas about how weaving is used in our everyday lives, (hair, baskets, certain clothing, etc.)

Show Image 1:

Here is an example of a weaving that is important to a particular culture of people.

Kente cloth is a traditional African style of weaving that can be dated back to 3000BC.  It is made from woven strips of four-inch wide cloth sewn together, possibly as a wearable garment. The cloth is used to represent history, philosophy, ethical and religious beliefs, social values, and politics important to the weaver.  What kind of shapes do you see in the pattern of the weaving?  Class will discuss the basic, geometric shapes they observe. These geometric shapes are used to convey a particular idea.  There are over 300 different types of geometric designs. 

Color is also an important choice in the meaning of the motif. This particular image uses black, maroon, and yellow threads. Black is used to show age, maturity, and especially spirituality. Yellow is used to represent egg yoke, ripe foods, as well as mineral gold. The color maroon represents mother-earth and healing. Each weaving uses both colors and patterns to create a conceptual idea.  What does conceptual mean, as opposed to representational? Class will discuss the difference in meaning. These weavings explain an idea or concept, not necessarily representing a realistic image.

Lets look at another Kente weaving. Show image 2.  What types of shapes are shown in this motif?  Class will discuss the shapes in the weaving. Name the colors that you see, how many basic colors are there? Class will discuss colors. The next image shows what a loom may look like that an African weaver may use. Show image 3.  Notice the size of the loom, and how the weaver is positioned inside.

 

Show Image 4:

Lets look at weavings in another part of the world.  Here is an image of a traditional Peruvian style weaving.  This particular piece of cloth is known as a manta.  Mantas are used in a variety of ways in everyday life, including as mats to sit on or a bag to carry items.  Each manta is very similar to a flag; having unique patterns and colors that represent a group of people.  This particular manta is for Chincheo, a village in Peru.

Show image 5. Look at how this loom is much different than the African loom shown earlier.  Class will discuss loom differences. Here a woman is weaving a belt.  The thread that runs vertically is known as the warp.  Teacher will draw a diagram on the board, or trace over warp with a smart board marker. The weft is yarn or thread woven from right to left, and then left to right through the warp strings. Show image 6. What types of patterns do you see in these weavings?  Are they geometric or organic?  What colors are shown? Class will discuss shapes, patterns, and colors in the image. Show image 7. Here is another image of Peruvian women weaving. You can see how they make weavings for all types of clothing.  What types of clothing do you see? Class will list and discuss various clothing items seen in the image.

 

Show Image 8:

One more type of weaving we will discuss can be seen in the traditional Navajo culture.  These Native Americans believed that their skill in weaving was taught from Spider Woman, a character in their religion. In fact, their weavings often show the creation stories, prayers and ceremonial practices, and ideas from the ancient and historical past. Anthropologists, on the other hand, believed the Navajo were taught to weave from Pueblo tribe, another group of Native Americans.  The Navajo wove blankets, tunic dresses, belts, hair ties, and other forms of clothing. Weaving is an individual process, and therefore, each piece holds very individual design and meaning.  The Navajo have the freedom to choose the design, color, and technique for each weaving.

When part of Mexico succeeded to the United States, the Navajo suffered great hardship.  Their weavings, though, remained closely entwined with their daily life.  Eventually, trading posts were established on Navajo reservations, and weavings were traded to the non-Indian world. This craft became a financial way of life.

When looking at this image, what shapes do you see?  What colors are shown? Class will discuss various shapes and colors observed. Show image 9. Look at how this weaving is much different than the weavings shown earlier.  Here, figures are represented. Show image 10. Here is yet another Navajo weaving. How is this rug different from other weavings we’ve seen? Class will discuss observational differences.

 

All of these cultures use weaving as a way to express beliefs about life. They are an integrated part of the lives of these people, and are often a very personal interpretation of the world around them. For our next project, we are weaving an image that reflects the world around us.  Particularly, we are going to look at cityscapes, landscapes, and landforms.

Process:

            Week/Day One:

o   Teacher prep:

o   Lay cardboard, warp thread, and sketch paper on teacher table

o   Lay scissors, pencils, rulers, tape, and packets of colored pencils in the center of all student tables

o   Collect weaving images for demonstration

o   Prepare calendar and other landscape images for demonstration

o   Have sample sunset weaving, sunset image, and sample template ready

o   Have sample cityscape image ready

o   Begin Lesson:

o   Show completed sunset demonstration weaving; “project goal”

o   Show sunset image that inspired weaving

o   Have class discuss similarities between the weaving and the image

o   How are the shapes similar and different?

o   How are the colors both similar and different?

o   Demonstrate how students will create basic shapes abstracted from their chosen image

o   Draw similar organic cloud shapes from image on the blackboard

o   Show cityscape image, and draw basic geometric interpretation on blackboard

o   Show template created for demonstration weaving

o   Explain that student will create a template from their sketch using 3-5 different colors.

o   Compare colors in template and weaving to colors in image

o   Explain how colors must represent image in some way

o   Reinforce the idea of image, to sketch, to template, to weaving

o   Have class discuss the changing of shapes and choice of colors between image and template

o   Explain to students to use the image as inspiration only, not to completely copy the image

o   Teacher will pass out calendars images, other printed images, and sketch paper to different tables

o   Teacher will encourage students to exchange images until they find one to be particularly inspirational.

o   Students will begin sketches and templates

o   Allow students 10-15 minutes to create sketches, then begin demonstration on creating a loom

o   Loom Demonstration: Teacher will Demonstrate

o   Measure and draw a horizontal line ½ inch from the top and bottom edge of cardboard

o   Create marks ½ inch apart along the top and bottom edge of the board

o   Cut a notch on each mark up to the horizontal line along the top and bottom edge

o   Thread the warp by running a string from the top left notch, to the bottom left notch, and back up around the board to the second top notch.  Repeat process down the row

o   Tape ends of string to backside of board

o   Write name on back of loom

o   Class Begins Working

o   Pass out cardboard

o   Have students begin loom, and encourage them to finish before the end of class

o   Have students finish template for homework

Week/Day Two:

o   Teacher Prep:

o   Have calendar, weaving images, landscape images, sketch paper, colored pencils, spools of warp thread, and extra pieces of cardboard available on teacher table

o   Lay all student looms and templates on teacher table

o   Have boxes of yarns available on teacher table

o   Lay scissors, roles of tape, shuttles, and pencils on student tables

o   Begin Lesson

o   Review with students on different shapes and colors found in weavings.  Show images 1, 7, 11 on smartboard/ projector, or printed out.

o   Have students finish creating looms

o   Basic loom weaving demonstration: Teacher will Demonstrate

o   Place template on top of board, under warp strings

o   Select first color that runs along top of template, and wrap thread around cardboard shuttle

o   Begin weaving by moving shuttle under – over - under each warp string until you reach the end of the row

o   Leave a small loop of loose thread at the end of the row

o   Weave over – under - over back through the opposite direction. Make sure second row is opposite in weave than the first row

o   “Beat the warp” by pushing the row of tread up to the top of the loom

o   Continue process of weaving and beating the warp until the template shape is filled, and allow the end of the yarn to weave through the warp strings

o   Load the shuttle with the next color yarn, and continue the weave where the other yarn left off

o   Weaving organic and geometric shapes demonstration: Teacher will Demonstrate

o   Starting at the top of the weave, continue weaving the selected color of yarn along the row until reaching the edge of the desired shape

o   Once the edge of the shape is reached, drop down to the next row, and weave back the other way.  It may look as though the row was woven back pre-maturely

o   Continue process until desired shape is filled, we’ll call it shape “A”

o   To fill in other colors to the left or right of shape “A”, start at the upper most part of the loom, and begin weaving along the row where shape “A” has ended

o   At end of row, drop down and weave back the other direction

o   Once reaching shape “A”, make sure to weave between rows along the same warp string at the edge of shape “A,” interlocking the two shapes.  This will prevent large gaps between warp strings

o   Class continues working

o   Allow students to start weavings and work throughout the rest of class

o   Collect and store looms at the end of class, store with shuttles if necessary

Week/Day Three

o   Teacher Prep:

o   Have calendars and images available for use on teacher table

o   Pile looms, templates, and yarn on teacher table

o   Place scissors and shuttles on student tables

o   Continue Lesson

o   Allow students to continue weaving

o   Cycle around classroom, helping students where necessary

o   Demonstrate in small groups any portion of the lesson that absent students may have missed

o   Collect looms with shuttles at the end of class

Week/Day Four

o   Repeat Teacher Prep and Lesson from Week Three

Week/Day Five

o   Teacher Prep:

o   Have calendars and images available for use on teacher table

o   Pile looms, templates, and yarn on teacher table

o   Place scissors and shuttles on student table

o   Place sticks and dowel rods on teacher table

o   Place silver, gold, black, and white tempera paint on teacher table

o   Place paint brushes, water containers on teacher table

o   Continue Lesson

o   Allow students to continue weaving

o   Cycle around classroom, helping students where necessary

o   Demonstrate in small groups any portion of the lesson that absent students may have missed

o   Demonstrate taking weave off loom: Teacher will Demonstrate

o   Turn loom around to the back side, where only warp strings are visible

o   Cut a horizontal line through the warp strings across the back of the board

o   In groups of 2, 3, or 4 strings, take hold of adjacent warp ends, and tie off the ends in a knot.

o   Provide sticks, dowel rods, paint, brushes, and water containers for students

o   Allow students to choose either a stick or a dowel rod, and whether or not they would like to paint this wooden hanger

o   Allow students to choose how to hang their weavings

o   Tie top warp strings around hanging rod

o   Have students continue weaving through the rest of class

Week/Day Six

o   Teacher Prep

o   Have calendars and images available for use on teacher table

o   Pile looms, templates, and yarn on teacher table

o   Place scissors and shuttles on student table

o   Place boxes of various extention objects on teacher table: (beads, feathers, acorns, leaves, bottle caps, etc)

o   Place leftover sticks and dowel rods on teacher table

o   Place silver, gold, black, white tempera paint on teacher table

o   Place paint brushes, water containers on teacher table

o   Continue Lesson

o   Allow students to finish weavings

o   Cycle around classroom, helping students where necessary

o   Repeat demonstration of taking weave off loom and attaching hanging rod in small groups where necessary

Extension:

o   Have students choose various objects to attaché to their weavings that correlate to their projects

o   Examples include: beads, feathers, shells, acorns, pinecones, leaves, (for landscape) buttons, bottle caps, can tabs, coins, gum or candy wrappers, (for cityscape) etc.

o   Add fabric, burlap, canvas, foil, patterned fabric scraps, paper, photos (students can bring in)

Evaluation: Use a four-scale rubric

o   Did student choose and adequately represent one landscape/cityscape/landform?

o   4 – chose landscape/cityscape/landform and created a prestige interpretation of image or desired idea; project goes above and beyond

o   3 – chose landscape/cityscape/landform and created an adequate interpretation; students achieves basic understanding

o   2 – did not choose landscape/cityscape/landform or did not create adequate interpretation of idea

o   1 – did not choose landscape/cityscape/landform and did not create adequate interpretation of image chosen

o   Did student use 3-5 unifying colors?

o   4 – used 3-5 successfully chosen colors: colors either relate to interpreted landscape or student successfully explains choice of colors

o   3 – used 3-5 colors, yet colors have no correlation or unifying significance, looks as though they were chosen haphazardly, and student has no thought into why colors were chosen

o   2 – used 6 or more colors, or 2 or less colors.  Colors do seem to correlate

o   1 – used 6 or more colors, or 2 or less colors.  Colors chosen have no correlation; student has no reason for why they were chosen.

o   Is image abstracted into organic and/or geometric shapes?

o   4 – student has successfully abstracted desired sketch into organic or geometric shapes, gone above and beyond to represent desired idea         

o   3 – student has abstracted image adequately, or has conveyed idea adequately

o   2 – student has somewhat abstracted shapes, or has unsuccessfully conveyed idea

o   1 – student has not successfully abstracted shapes; shapes chosen have no connection to interpreted image or desired idea

o   Is understanding of the basic weaving process shown?

o   4 – student understanding of weaving process goes above and beyond expectation

o   3 – student understanding of weaving process is adequate

o   2 – student understanding of weaving process is somewhat poor; weave is not uniformly woven throughout warp strings

o   1 – student understanding of weaving process is poor, very little uniformity in weaving

o   Did student create a nicely crafted project?

o   4 – weaving is beautifully crafted, going beyond expectation

o   3 – weaving is adequately crafted

o   2 – weaving is somewhat poorly crated; yarn ends hang out, warp strings are pulled to the center of weaving

o   1 – weaving is poorly crafted; warp strings were missed, yarn ends hang out, weaving is extensively loose

Visual Standard:

            National Standards:

                        NA-VA.9-12.1

                        NA-VA.9-12.2

                        NA-VA.9-12.3

                        NA-VA.9-12.4

            Pennsylvania Standards:

                        7.3.12.B, 8.3.12.B,

9.1.12.A, 9.1.12.B, 9.1.12.J

            9.2.12.A, 9.2.12.D, 9.2.12.G, 9.2.12.I, 9.2.12.J, 9.2.12.K, 9.2.12.L

            9.3.12.A

            9.4.12.A