Tuesday, January 10, 2017

In the Art Room: First Grade Fiber Arts

Every year I do paper weaving with my first grade artists...and every year, when the weavings are complete, I think, "well, now what?"

This year, my first graders FLEW through weaving without much help or reteaching from me. I was so excited that I decided to throw some simple stitching into the mix and I'm so glad I did. The kids nailed it and created a beautiful heart-tastic quilt to boot.
Day 1: If you've never done paper weaving with kids before, here is how I teach them to cut their looms. We used painted paper for our looms. Cutting our looms and weaving a couple of strips took us one 30 minute class. 
Day 2: On our second day, we reviewed the weaving process. We sit in a circle and weave together. I like to use peer tutoring for those who understand weaving to help others. I find the kids do an excellent job teaching one another!
Our Love Quilt now hangs outside my art room! This is the work of two classes. My next two classes will have a different color scheme. I'll be sure to share when they are complete. 
Day 3: The next art class, students chose a 12" square piece of construction paper. We learned all about symmetry as well as positive and negative shapes and how to cut out a heart! This was then glued over our weavings. We saved the positive shape hearts for our next project. As a wrap up, we had a drawing sheet full of symmetrical and asymmetrical images for the kids to draw.
Day 4: I had to do some prep work for this day, not even gonna lie. I hot glued another square paper on the back of the artwork to anchor the weaving (see below) and I hole punched the sides. For two classes, that took about 20 minutes. Then I cut the yarn to about 18" strips and had pieces of tape on hand for the kids.
To begin, each child anchored their yarn with tape on the back. I showed them out to do a whip stitch and they went to town. To end the stitch, they added another piece of tape on the back. 
Early finishers helped those those who needed assistance. Everyone finished in under 20 minutes. This gave us time to add our names with silver Sharpie!
Once the kids were done, I laid the pieces out on the floor and decided to display the artwork quilt-style. 
For that, I simply hole punched the tops and bottoms of the weavings and tied them together with two pieces of yarn. This created long pieces of art that I hung next to each other to create the illusion of a blanket. That took a mere 30 minutes! 

I was so excited that with 4 30 minute art classes, the kids learned about weaving, symmetry and stitching...all while having a blast! I am so glad to have this beautiful masterpiece outside my art room. 

Love to hear about your favorite projects that involve paper weaving!
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  1. Cassie, these are amazing! Beautiful work! What brand of paper do you get that is so colorful?

    1. I only purchase TruRay paper, it's the most vibrant brand and doesn't fade as bad as the rest.

  2. Anonymous1/11/2017

    Gorgeous! I also only use TruRay paper for artwork and matting. Thanks for sharing so much beautiful inspiration!

  3. Love this. I'm starting paper weaving with my some classes hope you don't mind if I borrow your heart idea its brilliant.

    1. OF COURSE!! That's why I share, borrow away!

  4. Thank you so much for posting this! I have been scared to try weaving so far, but the videos were so helpful in how to TEACH weaving instead of just how to DO weaving that I decided to give it a shot. I tried it with first grade today and it was so much fun, the kids were so engaged they even forgot to goof off. I had to practically pry the weaving out of one little boys hands, he didn't want to stop. I can't wait to be adventurous with more weaving projects!

  5. Anonymous5/25/2017

    Hi Cassie,
    After you have these group projects completed, they are hung in the hall, but what happens after that. Do you take them apart at the end of school or do they not get them back??

  6. Cassie, you are an inspiration. Thanks for all you do!


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