Try Native American beadwork history and then a small project with the seed
When I think of beads, I usually think of jewelry. This leads to thoughts
of Egyptian and African cultures. Perhaps, there is a project related to
one of those cultures that you could use.
Since you started with the history of beads, you could end with a
contemporary craft project using beads such as jewelry with Sculpey or the
beaded lampshades that seem to be fashionable now. Even though the
projects are supposed to be multiculturaI, a "closer-to-home" project might
be useful to finish off the unit. I found while teaching a class on crafts
and culture that the students eventually want to connect the stuff from
other cultures to their own.
> From: Maggie White <mwhite>
> To: artsednet.edu
> Subject: And the bead goes on...
> Date: Tuesday, June 30, 1998 6:13 PM
> Well, guys, after taking one of those exhausting, quick-and-dirty weekend
> classes for professional growth credit (traveling 360 miles round trip to
> Phoenix), I find myself brain dead for ideas for my final project. We
> have to write five interrelated lesson plans on multicultural art, _each
> one_ with 12 components (curriculum concepts; how the lesson corresponds
> with the visual art standards; lesson objectives; background info, etc.)
> I've chosen BEADS as my unit, and so far have three lessons: the first is
> the history of beads; the second on Japanese netsuke beads (their history
> and then a hands-on project carving some); the third on millefiore beads
> (history and then hands-on). I'm not used to dividing my units up into
> such tiny increments! I thought for the fourth plan we'd do rolled-paper
> beads and found-object beads--yeah, I know, this is getting to be a real
> Can any of you geniuses think up a good fifth lesson? I thought of maybe
> having a bead market where the students would trade beads and then make
> something with them, but not being a jewelry person myself I don't know
> what to do with them other than string them, much less write a
> 12-component lesson plan on it. The lesson does not have to be like a
> culminating activity for the whole unit, and doesn't even have to be the
> last one.
> BTW, this is for a HS level art history class, but I'll entertain any
> ideas for any level.