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May 21, 2012

Weaving with Students

In the Fall, my students learned about a specific Native American tribe that lived in California.  Two years ago I took extra yarn and taught them to weave.  Then, even though part of me thought I was crazy, I did it again this year.  It really is pretty simple once they get going.  The kids that "get it" then help the ones that are having a harder time.  Another reason I love 4th grade!

Now, I used a shoe box lid to have them weave.  My students brought in shoeboxes to make a Science Ecosystem diorama, so it was easy to just save the box lids for this project.

It was pretty easy to create the loom.  I had them use their scissors to make 7 cuts on the 2 ends of the shoebox lid.  This was hard for some of them since their shoe boxes were so thick.  Next year I will probably take their shoeboxes beforehand and use the paper cutter to complete the step quicker.

They then took an extra long (about 3 feet) piece of yarn and wrapped it around the first "tooth".  Yes, I likened creating the loom to flossing their teeth.  It was a silly comparison, but they understood.

After we wrapped it that first time, we tied it, then went down and up on the loom, "flossing" the shoebox teeth.  When it got to the last tooth they tied it.  

They then counted out 20 pieces of yarn (these pieces were about a foot long, 2 different colors), and they then started the "over, under" pattern.  I made them do one color, and then alternated with the other color.  I made them do at least 20 pieces, some did more and it turned into a small doll blanket.

When they were done, I had them move all the yarn to the center portion of the grid, and get it as tight as possible.  Then they tied the edges - taking the 2 colors and making a knot.  They went down the row, then did the other side.  

After those were done, we lifted it out of the shoebox lid, cut those strings shorter, and tied them together with their neighbor.  They were so proud of their accomplishments!  

I will be doing this again next Fall, and this time around I hope I won't think that I'm crazy!  


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