Sewing a Real Quilt
A third/fourth grade class hand-sewed a real
square nine-patch quilt to raffle off to pay for a field trip.
Each child pieced nine pre-cut squares of cloth,
following directions and modeling demonstrated in class.
The students use free time to complete one or two nine-
patch blocks. The teacher helped them keep stitches
small and straight. The students arranged the blocks in
the order they thought looked good for a five-by-six
block quilt and chose their school colors for the sashing
and backing. The quilter assembled the quilt by machine.
Only two blocks needed adjustment for size-an
outstanding job for any group of people. The quilt went
back to school for the hand tying of knots (a traditional
alternative to stitching for the quilting stage). (photo
One of the teacher-advisors on the Museumlink project
created a DBAE approach to a quilt unit (on art quilter
Faith Ringgold, in which fourth graders watched a video
of her work, discussed the elements that made her style
unique, painted a central panel, and designed and colored
a geometric border that was ironed on). We have adapted
this unit to incorporate the use of the WWW. This unit
takes four art classes of 50-60 minutes each. The use of
several class periods let the students absorb the
knowledge about the artist and the art form and reinforce
it in their own work in a way that a one-period activity would not do. (photo
Resources for Quilting:
Quilting with Children gives a teacher illustrated steps and good instructions on making different
kinds of quilts with groups of children. A listserv is also available with this site.