Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Around the World

This week marks the end of the official school-year at EP. Though I'm teaching through the summer, I can't help but feel that this is the end of the best job I've had. The school has become a home, and I've created a wonderful network of close friends within its community. I wanted to acknowledge my mentors this year with something special. Whatever it was, I wanted it to somehow compliment the year's anti-bias education focus.

Louise Derman-Sparks is a pioneer of the movement, and we have had the great fortune of working with her this year. We explored anti-bias topics in our own classrooms and among our teaching teams. The four curriculum goals of anti-bias education are:
*construction of a knowledgeable, confident self-identity
*comfortable, empathic interaction with people from diverse backgrounds
*critical thinking about bias
*ability to stand up for herself or himself, and for others, in the face of bias

When I found this on Etsy, I was certain that it would be the perfect gift. The painting and woodwork are really beautiful! Unfortunately, the cost is unrealistic for me. I decided to experiment with creating my own. I purchased a bag of 40 peg people, a few paper mache boxes, and lots of paint!

I used Crayola multicultural paints on the peg people. I wanted each gift to have an assortment of people with different shapes and skin tones. The Crayola paint is washable, however, which made it difficult to get a nice, solid color. If I were to do it again, I would use the Crayola colors to find acrylic matches.

Finally...acrylics! I painted the tops of the boxes blue. It was so much easier to get the color I wanted, and it dried a lot faster.

I painted different regions of the globe on each top using green acrylic. I also put some green, paper grass inside the box before adding the people to give it a fuller look.

Finally, I wrapped each box with a complimentary orange ribbon.

I am so proud of my crafting! The gifts were inexpensive, and I think they mean that much more because I took the time to make them myself. I used a black marker to write a personal note on the bottom of each box: "Made with love for ______ by Christina."

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