Saturday, September 7, 2019

Weaving Tapestries in Geology

My first experience with making a tapestry as a whole-class project was in the Montessori school in Maryland. After Ms. Denise and I thought this up, it quickly became a tradition to make one annually, always tying the theme of the weaving in with a subject we were studying in our curriculum.

The first (2012-2013 school year) was a stream study of the stream in the woods on our campus. The second (2013-2014 school year) was the layers of the Earth with mountains forming and volcanoes erupting at the surface. Later we added the water cycle in the sky above.

I moved to Illinois in July 2014 and missed having a tapestry loom so much that I promptly bought the exact same one, the 48 inch Standing Tapestry Loom by Harrisville Designs. The Friendly Loom was the first "school" material in my new home (which is now mostly school materials). We have continued the tradition of weaving projects that tie in with curriculum.

When my daughter Becca studied the Waldorf 6th grade Geology block (2016-2017 school year), we warped the loom (February 12, 2017) and wove a limestone cave filled with stalactites and stalagmites. That project was inspired by the "landscape framed by a limestone cave entrance" lesson in Painting and Drawing in Waldorf Schools: Classes 1-8, pp.260-261.


Ultimately we decided to have the viewer looking into the cave and not out of the cave, and we wove in a background of cave walls behind the pillars of rock. When it was complete I sewed on wooden beads, seed beads, and Swarovski crystals which had been donated, so that it would have some extra texture and sparkle. There's even a fish bead swimming in one of the pools of water on the floor. It's one of my favorite Science projects ever!

When my 2017 Summer Camp topic was "From Lava to Life" (the Montessori Second Great Lesson), we again wove the layers of the Earth, this time on a hula hoop loom. That project was inspired by an illustration in Faith McNulty's excellent How to Dig a Hole to the Other Side of the World.

I recently had someone ask me for pictures of my Geology tapestry, since my old blog from the Tidewater School has been taken down, and I realized that ALL THREE of these projects are Geology weavings! So I decided to make a new blog post and share pics of all three.


Layers of the Earth / Types of Mountains / Water Cycle
Tapestry
2013-2014 School Year

Oct 29 2013

Oct 29 2013

Oct 29 2013

Layers of the Earth nomenclature

Dec 19 2013

Dec 19 2013

Jan 8 2019

Feb 3 2014
continuing with the layers of the Earth

Feb 10 2014

Feb 26 2014
adding the types of mountains

Feb 26 2014

Feb 26 2014

Apr 3 2014

Apr 14 2014
we add a cartoon for the water cycle

May 6 2014

May 6 2014

May 7 2014

May 7 2014
Becca, age 9, weaving on the loom

May 7 2014

May 7 2014

May 20 2014

May 20 2014

at the end of the school year I say good-bye to the tapestry
and get ready to move to Illinois

Sep 20 2014
I come back to MD to lead a parent workshop
and the class has done so much work on it!

Sep 20 2014 

Sep 20 2014
the back side



Limestone Cave with Stalactites & Stalagmites
Tapestry
2016-2017 School Year
2017-2018 School Year

Feb 12 2017

Feb 12 2017

Feb 12 2017

Feb 12 2017
Becca's MLB page

Feb 13 2017
Becca, now age 12, preparing to weave!

Feb 13 2017

Feb 13 2017

Feb 13 2017
starting a new tapestry is the most fun thing ever

Feb 16 2017

Mar 10 2017

Mar 10 2017

 Mar 10 2017

Mar 10 2017

Mar 10 2017

Mar 10 2017

Mar 12 2017

Mar 12 2017

Mar 12 2017
the fork... an essential weaving tool

Mar 12 2017

Mar 12 2017

May 11 2018

May 18 2018

Jun 5 2018
the loom stands ready for the next project
(the Backyard Biome in Local History/Geography)

Dec 28 2018
I finally finish embellishing the tapestry with sparkle!




Layers of the Earth
Hula Hoop Loom Weaving
2017 "From Lava to Life" Summer Camp

Jun 22 2017

Jun 22 2017
we used strips of fabric as well as yarn
and finger knitting to make this project
(completed in two weeks)

Jun 23 2017
the finished weaving on display
at our Museum Walk / Expo

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