Wednesday, June 6, 2012

In the Art Room: Walk Like an Egyptian

Our amazing second grade singing and dancing to a rewrite of the Bangles hit "Walk Like an Egyptian."
 Well, here it is, folks, the final installment of The Art Show. It seems like a million years ago that I shared  Part 1 and Part 2 of our school wide art show with you. I decided to save my favorite part of the art show for last: the second grade production "Walk Like an Egyptian."

This year, in the art room, our theme was Ancient Egypt. I chose that theme because of an amazing exhibit at The Frist Center for Visual Arts. Not only did my second through fourth grade students visit this exhibit, but the entire school studied Egypt throughout the year. My first graders created Egyptian Landscapes and Nile Crocodile puppets. The third graders created a life-sized sarcophagus. Egyptian god portraits were created by my fourth grade students. And the second grade created Egyptian collar necklaces and gave this magical performance.
 I wrote this short and silly play set up just like the game show "Jeopardy". The program began with the two hosts (shown on the left) kicking off with the song "Walk like an Egyptian" Our fabulous music teacher rewrote the lyrics to The Bangles song (you know, because that little bit about "smoking on a hookah pipe" just might not go over well) and taught the kids the lyrics. One of our incredible second grade teachers taught the kids some sweet dance moves.

After that intro, King Tut (our friend in the middle) comes out as the Alex Trebek of the show. He lobbed questions, as well as some jokes, at the contestants: Cleopatra, a Mummy and Queen Nefertiti. The kids sang a rewrite of Steve Martin's "King Tut" ("he's my favorite honkey" didn't seem like the best thing for the kids to be singing, 'specially since dude was Egyptian). The show ended with the mummy busting free of her bandage strips (er, toilet paper) and stealing the show as well as winning the prize of 100 shabti (shown on the right).
After the production, the kids were all smiles, even the toothless variety.
 The play was a ton of fun and a huge hit, especially with the performers. They lit up the stage with their excitement and enthusiasm. It was such a delight to work with the incredible music, P.E., second grade and many other teachers in the school to make this play possible.
Egyptian collar necklaces are now the latest in second grade fashion.
 My part in preparing the kids for the program was the costuming. I knew I wanted to keep it simple for the parents, so I asked the kids wear over sized t-shirts, shorts and sandals on the day of the performance. During art class, we studied the history of Egyptian jewelry with a focus on Egyptian collar necklaces and scarab beetle jewelry.
Okay, I'm not a macaroni-art kind of teacher but I will admit, this was kind of fun. If you do this, do not use the textured pasta as it cracks when it dries.
 One group of kids was given a wide variety of colorful pasta that they glued onto their gold-painted cardboard collars. We chatted about patterning and design.
 Once the glue dried, we added designs to our necklaces by printing. The kids used cardboard, q-tips and marker caps dipped in gold paint to create their unique designs.
 Knowing that they were going to be wearing their creations in their performance, the kids really worked hard on crafting beautiful necklaces.
The little actor that played King Tut is the son of one sweet mama. She came up with the pipe cleaner idea as a way to hold the necklaces on. She simply hole punched, fed the pipe cleaner through one side and twisted to keep it in place. The other side she left like a hook. This way the kids could take their necklaces on and off on their own.
 Some of my other classes created these scarab beetle necklaces. For these, the kids used cardboard to cut out the shape of wings. These cardboard shapes were then wrapped in tin foil and then colored with sharpie. Can you guess what the beetle's body is...? One of the many uses for bottle caps in the art room!
Two proud Egyptians showing off their necklaces.
I love the anch design, don't you?
 This program was such fun and a great way to kick off the art show. However, having an art show AND a performance on the same day most certainly gave me some new gray hairs. So, while I'd love to work with these amazing kids and teacher on another production again...let's just say I might pick a less insanely busy day. Thanks for dropping by.


  1. Aww too cute! Must have been a lot of fun despite the grey hairs and hard work! :) x

    1. Thank you, yes, it was worth it! And hopefully something the kids won't soon forget. Thank you for reading! ...Cassie

  2. These kids look great! This craft goes great with the 2013 summer reading program theme, "Dig into Reading." I'm definitely going to do this craft of the summer with my school age kids. Any tips on painting a large number of pasta? Did you paint each individualy or roll a bunch around in paint?

    1. Hi April! For painting tons of pasta, I poured the dried pasta into a bowl and then squirted paint all over it. After stirring that around, I poured the pasta onto a sheet of foil to dry for the night. Some of the pasta tube cracked (?) but the kids didn't mind. They said it made the pasta look "old". Whatever works, right? I hope that helps!

    2. I'd forgotten to check back on this. That sounds like a great way to do it, thanks!

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