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Instead of weaving over and under, draw it with Crayola® Washable Markers! Bold and colorful textile patterns from Ghana look almost real with this amazing marker technology.
During a unit of study of African countries, invite students to research the country of Ghana. Organize a variety of text and electronic resources for students to view during this investigation. Students may work in small groups during this activity and may select a specific aspect of the country to learn about. When research is complete, students groups organize their learning into a presentation format in preparation for sharing with classmates.
To accompany presentations, students in each group will create an original Kente cloth. The Kente cloth, traditionally made by the people of Ghana, is both beautiful and meaningful. It is made by weaving long strips that contain symbolic patterns. There is a pattern to illustrate joy, a pattern for royalty, a pattern for newborn babies—nearly every important event in a person’s life can be expressed in Kente cloth patterns. When several strips of fabric are woven, they are cut into even lengths, and then stitched together to create wide sheets of cloth. The fabric is used to create flowing garments.
To create their own replica Kente cloth drawings, students begin by using Crayola Scissors to cut several long, narrow strips of paper.
Use Crayola Washable Markers to color each strip a different color. Students select a different color marker and create repeated patterns to their strips. Encourage children to vary the colors and patterns used on each strip. Duplicate authentic patterns or create personal symbols.
Cut the long strips into several shorter sections. Tape them together on the back. Use a third color of Washable Markers to create "stitches" that visually connect the strips to each other on the front of the drawings.
Allow time for students groups to present their learning about Ghana to classmates. While doing so, students that are presenting will post their Kente cloths as background to their presentations.
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