Monday, October 27, 2008

Philosophy of Teaching

I feel that art is important for so many reasons. First and most fundamentally, art is a valuable tool for communication. Through art children can express their ideas concerning what they understand of the world around them. Art also enables an open mind by helping people view one matter from many perspectives. Art is important in a school because it can help students and teachers, through interdisciplinary curriculum incorporation, understand other subject matters more thoroughly. When including elements and discussions from other classes into art dialogues and projects, children are offered another way of learning, another way of comprehending the information.

Beyond the school and classroom art is important to a community. It provides a link that connects all of society. Art is a language that is accessible to everyone, regardless of age, class, race, etc., and when we make art a part of our daily lives we feel more connected to not only various social and ecological issues in our society, but also to the other citizens therein as well. Helping children understand the language of art is a priority in my life.

Coming from a liberal arts background I have found that a balanced education has provided me with an open mind when it comes to interpreting and understanding the world around me. I believe that I have the potential to help other young minds develop in a similar way, and can effectively communicate the value of arts to various age groups. My goal is to facilitate to my students an understanding of art not only as a form of expression, but also as a tool for communicating values inherent in societies of the past and present.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Altered Books: Creating New Meaning

Shauna Palmer, February 2005

"A book is a set or collection of written, printed, illustrated, or blank sheets, made of paper, parchment, or other material, usually fastened together to hinge at one side". (Wikipedia, 2008). Books are beautiful pieces of art that often convey powerful messages and, through the language of literature, communicate values, emotions, and other sentiments. People often say that you shouldn't judge a book by its cover, but the cover of a book is an artwork all on its own. When purchasing or choosing a book many readers overlook the forethought that is involved in designing the cover of a book. Book covers are intended to not only appeal to certain audiences, but also to express something of the authors individuality, and to set the stage for what lies in the pages ahead.

"Animal Farm", George Orwell, 1945

If a book is without interior illustrations, the aesthetic beauty of the book is often limited to the cover, and the reader becomes absorbed in the vernacular within. As artists, we are always looking for ways to further communication through the visual arts. There are many ways to alter books so that they become much more than merely language art. Some artists modify whole books, page by page. Others remove the pages of the books so that they may create their own meaning within the cover. Fundamentally an altered book is any book, old or new that has been recycled by creative means into a work of art. They can be rebound, painted, cut, burned, folded, added to, collaged in, gold-leafed, rubber stamped, drilled or otherwise adorned. (ISABA, 2006). Altered books can be utilized as powerful tools for conveying meaning regarding the ideals of the artist, as well as to reflect the values of the society and community that he or she is a part of.

All images: Shauna Palmer, February 2005

altering a book to create new art, one must be careful to acknowledge that he or she is manipulating someone else's art. Because we often think of books as objects rather than as literary art, when creating altered books it becomes easy to forget that we aren't working from raw materials. In order to avoid copyright issues, Victorian or antique books are often used in altered book projects. (Wikipedia, 2008).

One example of an artist altering a book from the Victorian era is "A Humument", created by Tom Phillips. "A Humument" is a a series of altered book pages that Phillips created from the Victorian novel "A Human Document", by W.H. Mallock. "A Humument" is essentially a work in progress, as Tom Phillips continues to work and rework his original page alterations as they were published in 1970. ( Phillips pieces have been displayed in exhibition between two pieces of glass, so that viewers may reflect upon both sides of the book pages, further blurring the line between literary and visual art. (Sackner, 2008). "A Humument", "in which each page has been painted, typed upon, drawn, or collaged to leave clusters of the original printed text as new poetry" (Sackner, 2008) has been described as "the most important artist's book of the twentieth century" (Sackner, 2008).

Tom Phillips, A Humument: Page 5, Tetrad Press Edition, 1970[-75].

Tom Phillips, A Humument: Page 6, Tetrad Press Edition, 1970[-75].

Altered Books Links:
International Society of Altered Book Artists
Altered Books
A Cyber Home for the Altered Book Artist
Tom Phillips, "A Humument"

Altered Books Lesson Plan

Grade Level: 6 - 12

This lesson has an interdisciplinary focus, which emphasizes manipulating text and combining techniques of wax resist and watercolors in order to make a meaningful and beautiful piece of art.

9.1 Production, Performance, and Exhibition of Dance, Music, Theatre and Visual Arts
9.2 Historical and Cultural Contexts
9.3 Critical Response
9.4 Aesthetic Response
1.4 Types of Writing
1.7 Characteristics and Functions of the English Language

To Create an altered book page utilizing the technique of wax resist under watercolors.

1. Students will be introduced to the technique of wax resist under watercolor.
2. Students will recognize that book pages can be manipulated so as to create a piece of art that is both visually as well as textually significant.
3. Students will each express, through the process of wax resist under watercolor combined with methods of book altering, an idea, concept, or emotion that is significant to him or her.

Resource Materials/ Visual Aids:
• Teaching Board explicating project.
• Completed exemplar of an altered book page that epitomizes the wax resist/ watercolor technique.

Supplies/ Materials:
• Various book pages, removed from books.
• White or clear wax crayons. *Frisket film may be used as a substitute, if available.
• Colored crayons.
• Watercolors and brushes.
• Cups for water.
• Paper towels.
• Construction paper for mounting.
• Scissors.

Teacher Preparation:
• Preparation of teaching board.
• Collection of books, removal of pages.
• Creating of project exemplars.

Introduction: “Has anyone ever used words as a visual part of a piece of art?” Presentation of teaching board, display of a variety of altered book projects, presentation of exemplars, demonstration of wax resist technique.

1. After selecting a book page to use, select specific words to use to convey a thought or idea, perhaps creating a sentence or short poem. Students should be briefed on composition so that they may utilize their page in a space-efficient manner, thereby creating a visually pleasing, as well as textually significant, piece of art.

2. Color over these words with white (or clear, if available), wax crayon, making sure not to color over surrounding words. Students may outline these specific words or phrases with another color crayon or pen or marker if desired. If Frisket film is available, students may cut the film into rectangles that will just cover the word or sentence they wish to protect from the watercolors, and then peel the back from the film and apply it to said words on the page.

3. If desired students may add other designs in wax crayon, pen, or marker, but they should make sure to do this minimally so that the text in the background is still apparent.

4. When the foundation design of the page is completed, paint watercolors over the whole page. The wax over the selected text will create a resist so that the words are still visible through the watercolor. (If you are using Frisket film, once the watercolor is dry, slowly peel off the filmed sections. The watercolors should not have affected these areas).

5. Once the page is dry, mount the piece to black paper, approximately an inch larger than the page on each side.

Discussion of the pages geared towards garnering student opinions regarding whether or not altered book pages should be considered an art form or a craft. Critique of completed pages, with discussion of page composition and color choices, with attention paid to the ideas that are conveyed through the finished pieces.

Student may select another book page and begin work on altering it using the wax resist technique.

Time Budget:
5 minutes – Introduction to altered books, presentation of teaching board and exemplars, demonstration of wax resist technique.
25 minutes – Production.
5 minutes – Critique/ Discussion.

Altered Books - Any book, old or new that has been recycled by creative means into a work of art. They can be rebound, painted, cut, burned, folded, added to, collaged in, gold-leafed, rubber stamped, drilled or otherwise adorned.

Wax Resist – Utilization of a wax substance to resist another substance, such as watercolor paint, that is applied over the wax.

Safety Concerns:

Bibliography/ References:
*Sackner, Marvin. "Humumentism: The Works and Ideas of Tom Phillips". 2008.
*Wikipedia, 2008. "Altered Books".
*Wikipedia, 2008. "Book".

Monday, October 20, 2008

Political Cartoons in the Classroom: Addressing Social Concerns Through Visual Means

A Webquest for 9 - 12 graders by Cydnee Perman, University of the Arts

"Gross National Problems", Pat Bagley, Salt Lake Tribune, 11/21/2008

Through this Webquest you will....
  • Learn the characteristics of political cartoons, thereby understanding such technical terms as "caricature" and "visual metaphors".
  • Evaluate the significance of political cartoons in our society, both as an art form and as a mode of communication.
  • Investigate and decode political cartoons, thereby employing critical thinking skills.
  • Discuss whether artists should maintain a moral responsibility
    to not offend with their art.
  • Research artists from other countries who utilize political cartoons to make statements about their societies.
  • Create political cartoons that express ideas relevant to their own communities.
  • Evaluate the necessity of propriety of free speech when creating art.
Note to Webquest adventurers: Wherever you see a highlighted phrase, click on it to connect to more information that will help you to understand the term a little more thoroughly. Also, click on any image on the Webquest for a closer look!


"A cartoonist is a writer and artist, philosopher, and punster, cynic and community conscience. He seldom tells a joke, and often tells the truth, which is funnier. In addition, the cartoonist is more than a social critic who tries to amuse, infuriate, or educate. He is also, unconsciously, a reporter and
historian. Cartoons of the past leave records of their times that reveal how people lived, what they thought, how they dressed and acted, what their amusements and prejudices were, and what the issues of the day were." (Ruff and Nelson, 1999, p. 75).

Congratulations! You have just been hired as the newest social commentator for the UArts Daily Tribune. Your job will be to address the issues that face our society today in a way that will maintain a mass appeal and communicate powerful messages to the most diverse audience possible, but also use the fewest words you can. Sound tricky? Why not try incorporating your social commentary with simple and artful illustrations, thereby creating a political cartoon?

Because of the visual nature of political or editorial cartoons, there is an immediate emotional impact on the reader that is established, which can be far more effective in making an impression than a written article. Through the use of visual metaphors the artist allows a reader to, in a glance, sum up a controversial po
litical topic (Melnik, 2007). Political cartoons can often be dangerously subversive with the presentation of their content, pushing the limits of the kind of expression that is generally deemed socially acceptable. But it is this brash and deliberate exaggeration that allows a wide audience to
immediately understand the message presented.
Through this web adventure, you will prepare yourself for your job as a political cartoonist by learning about the history of political cartoons, as well as the visual and verbal tools utilized in their production.


So where do we begin? I'm sure by now you're eager to start creating your own visual metaphors, but before you begin to even review the cartoons of other artists, you must spend some time
understanding the techniques that are employed in political cartoons to create powerful and poignant statements.

Political cartoons are composed primarily of two parts: a distortion or parody of an individual or group in the form of a caricature, and allusion, which provides the c
ontext and situation into which the individual is positioned. (A Brief History of Political Cartoons). But political cartoons also use symbolism, exaggeration, labeling, analogy, and irony to get their points across. Spend a few minutes reviewing the Cartoon Analysis Guide so that you can familiarize yourself with these techniques.

Once you feel that you have an understanding of these tactics, participate in the learning activity, making sure to read the full instructions before you begin.

Also pay attention to the questions that you should ask yourself once you identify which persuasive techniques the cartoonist has used. (These are outlined at the bottom of the Cartoon Analysis Guide page).
The questions to keep in mind include:
  • What issue is the political cartoon about?
  • What is the cartoonist's opinion on this issue?
  • What other opinion can you imagine another person having on this issue?
  • Did you find this cartoon persuasive? Why or why not?
  • What other techniques could the cartoonist have used to make this cartoon more persuasive?
To garner a little more practice, select 3 cartoons from the popular site Slate and answer all of the questions for each image. Print out your images so that you can share your findings with the class. Take note that along the left side of the page is a list of many categories to explore, so you're sure to find a topic that you're interested in!


So now you understand how to decipher a political cartoon, but like anything else you will learn in your life and career, before you begin creating your own editorial cartoons you must study a bit about the history of some of America's most reknown political cartoonists.

Early Political Cartoons

*One of the first political cartoonists to gain recognition in
our country was Benjamin Franklin. In an attempt to gather support for the Albany “Plan of Union” for the colonies, Franklin created the image of a serpent divided into eight parts, above the phrase “Join or Die.”
Ben Franklin's original illustration, 1754

*While Benjamin Franklin created a singular image to express ideas about the politics of his developing nation during the eighteenth century, it is Thomas Nast who is considered the pioneer of political cartooning in the United States. Nast’s first series of cartoons that gained notoriety featured a man called William Marcy Tweed. In response to Nast’s cartoons that were
being published, Tweed is quoted as saying “’Stop them damn pictures. I don’t care so much what the papers write about me. My constituents can’t read. But, damn it, they can see pictures.’” (Hess & Kaplan, 1968, p. 13).
Thomas Nast’s infamous cartoon, August 19, 1871

Questions for Discussion:

1. “Basically cartooning is a symbolic art. The symbols are a short-hand, a convenience, not only for the artist but for the viewer as well” (Hess & Kaplan, 1968, p. 33). Discuss the significance of the symbolically powerful political cartoons during Franklin and Nast’s era, at a time when literacy was not yet widespread.

2. Study Ben Franklin’s Serpent illustration. Decode and discuss the meaning behind the symbolism in the image.

3. Thomas Nast’s cartoon was responsible for the capture of William Tweed, who, after apprehension by the authorities, was sent to jail where he remained until his death, shortly after his sentence began. (Hess & Kaplan, 1968). Was it fair that Tweed was imprisoned based on an illustration? Should the Spanish guard have utilized a cartoon to make such a serious accusation?

Political Cartoons in the 20th Century

*Theodor Geisel, The Political Activist

Long after the 18th and 19th centuries, beyond the time of Benjamin Franklin and of Thomas Nast, political cartoons have continued to be utilized to express opinions and make dramatic statements regarding social concerns in the U.S. One artist who is not generally acknowledged for creating parody out of current events is Theodor Seuss Geisel, or “Dr. Seuss.”

Dr.Seuss Cartoon from June, 1941

Read about Dr.Seuss's political cartoons. You will find listed at the top of the page several categories of these political cartoons to investigate.

*Matt Davies, Making Light of American Controversy

Pulitzer Prize-winning editorial cartoonist Matt Davies immigrated from London in 1983, and has since found himself immersed in the politics of our society. Since art school Davies has drawn 1000s of cartoons, and is currently a staff cartoonist for The Journal News. (Matt Davies). With his illustrations for News, “Davies cuts to the chase on every major issue, deftly penetra ting the spin and obfuscation to show readers what’s really at the heart. His caustic wit combines with a strong moral sensibility to render the complex comprehensible” (Go Comics).

Though Matt Davies creates cartoons that are undeniably humorous, his intentions run deeper than just making people laugh. As his primary focus in creating his visual commentary, Davies hopes to guide his readers in taking a closer and more conscientious look at the politics of our society. (McClure).

Explore Matt Davies' political cartoons on his blog. Also note that while his political cartoons are self-explanatory in their images and captions, he explicates many of them through additional commentary.

Questions for Discussion:

1. Discuss possible reasons why Dr. Seuss went on hiatus from writing and illustrating children’s
books to create his political cartoons.

2. Why do you think that Dr. Seuss is less known for his 40+ children’s books than for his over 400 political cartoons? Do you think that the political cartoons of Seuss are more or less meaningful than his book? Discuss in what ways you feel that they are more or less consequential.

3. Find a photograph, either in a history book or on the Internet, of Hideki Tojo. Compare it to the caricature of the Japanese Prime Minister in the “Awkward Predicament” cartoon. Do you
feel that Dr. Seuss has endorsed any ethnic stereotypes when creating the image? Consider the following caricature of two Jewish men created by a Nazi party member in November of 1939. (From Der Stumer, November 1939). Do you feel that this artist was more or less justified than was Dr. Seuss in portraying his subject the way he did? Why or why not?

4. A website called “Poynter Online” asks editorial cartoonists, including Matt Davies, to analyze their own cartoons in terms of three questions: “what sparked the idea for this cartoon, how the concept evolved, and why it worked” (Poynter Online). Refer back to Davies’ cartoon of the man and the pit bull (posted on March 7, 2008), and attempt to analyze it in terms of what Davies’ responses might be to these three questions.

5. Refer back to the cartoons of the four artists to whom you have been introduced. Compare and contrast the visual styles in terms of line, shading, and texture. Whose style do you feel is most appropriate as a commentary expressing social concerns? Discuss what makes you think so. As a reader, whose style did you find the most visually appealing? Why? Whose did you find the most socially relevant? Why?


1. Choose a socially relevant topic that is significant to you. Consider how this issue could be expressed through one central thought. Create a cartoon that incorporates such characteristics as visual metaphor, caricature, and humor, which express your opinions on the situation. Keep in mind that political cartoons are most effective when they are factually accurate, so outside research on the topic may be necessary.

2. Political cartoons are utilized as a form of expression of social concerns, not only in the U.S., but also around the globe. John Curtis, for example, is an artist from South Africa, who uses humor in his cartoons to communicate opinions about his society. The pictured cartoon, penned in 2006, cleverly articulates the South African people’s long-standing struggle to escape poverty. Do you think that Americans have the right to commentate on social situations of another culture, even if they are intended to support the causes of said nation? Do you feel that doing so widens or bridges the cultural gap between the nations?

As a multicultural extension, in an attempt to bridge rather than widen the cultural gap, research a political or social issue existing in another country that you feel is unjust. Develop a political cartoon expressing how you feel about the situation. Explain why you have visually expressed yourself in the manner you have, and why you feel that your cartoon is sympathetic to those who are being unjustly treated.


As a part of the Uarts Daily Tribune, your work will be under the scrutiny of your whole team. After each activity, staff meetings should be held in which you discuss the cartoons that you create, analyzing and critiquing them in regards to their content as well as their aesthetic attributes, such as visual organization of space and forms, and relevance of the images to the statement you are trying to make. Doing this thoroughly and thoughtfully will be a benefit to the whole team!

Teacher's Page

The utilization of political cartoons in art classrooms has wide appeal because of “its flexibility in meeting a wide range of instructional goals and objectives” (Heitzmann, 1998, p. 3). Decoding political cartoons can not only help students to develop their critical thinking skills, but also provides an avenue for the interdisciplinary investigation into current events of the past and present. Although this Webquest concentrates primarily on political cartoons within the United States, cartoons that express social values are regularly produced in countries around the globe. By incorporating these images into the dialogue of an art classroom, art educators can help their students make valuable multicultural associations.


A Brief History of Political Cartoons.
Calvin: Minds in the Making.
Cartoonist in South Africa.
Heitzmann, W. R. (1998). The Power of Political Cartoons in Teaching History. Occasional Paper. National Council for History Education, Inc.
Hess, S., & Kaplan, M. (1968). The Ungentlemanly Art: A History of American Political Cartoons. New York: Macmillan Publishing Co., Inc.
Melnik, R. (2007, January 23). Cartoons Catalyze Social Justice.
Nel, P. (2004). Dr. Seuss: American Icon. New York: The Continuum International Publishing Group Inc.
Poynter Online. (2003, July/August 27).
Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

"Wish You Were Here" Lesson Plan

Teacher: Cydnee Perman

Grade Level: 9

Title: “Wish You Were Here”

Brief History and Background:
Sending postcards is a unique way to keep in touch because, in addition to carrying personal messages, they often include pictures or images representing the places from which they are departing. Postcards can be even more special when they represent the places that we call home, the places to which we are most connected. Postcards are not merely snapshots of a geographical location, but can convey emotion and evoke the senses. This lesson is an example of how this same feeling can be incorporated into a work of art, so that it too expresses sentiments reflecting the most special places to the artist.

PA Academic Standards:
9.1A Elements and Principles in each Art Form
9.1C Vocabulary Within each Art Form
9.1E Themes in Art Forms
9.1J Technologies in the Arts
9.2A Context of Works in the Arts
9.2C Styles and Genre in the Arts
9.3A Critical Processes
9.3D Vocabulary for Criticism
9.4C Environmental Influences
9.4D Artistic Choices
3.7C Computer Operations
3.7E Computer Communication Systems

Goal: To create a collaged artwork that conveys a sense of home for the artist.

Students will become familiar with the work of William Wegman.
Students will experiment with different types of paper manipulation and collage techniques.
Students will reflect upon their homes and express emotion/feelings that they associate with said homes.
Students will be introduced to blogs and learn how to post images on a blog.

Resource Materials/Visual Aides:
Teacher-completed exemplar.
Powerpoint of artwork by William Wegman.
Computers with Internet capability.

Photographs, postcards, or other images that suggest the notion of “home” for each student.
12” x 12” canvasses.
Tissue paper in assorted colors.
Mod Podge adhesive.
Brushes for the glue.
Paint (optional).

Teacher preparation:
Creation of Powerpoint.
Creation of Exemplar.
Research of blogs, creation of sample blog.

Discuss the notion of “home” and the feelings it evokes. Discuss the purpose of postcards and the significance of postcards for expressing emotion and evoking the senses. Show powerpoint and teacher-prepared exemplar to illustrate the notion of an artwork expressing ideals of “home”.

1. Students should collect images, photographs, or other items to be collaged.
2. Using Mod Podge, students should adhere their images and tissue paper to their canvasses in a creative way, utilizing the space in a compositionally-effective manner.
3. Once completely dry, students will scan images and save them to the computer as a jpg file.
4. Students will open their own Blogger accounts at
5. Once accounts are created, students should upload their scanned images to a new post on their blogs.
6. Students should be advised that if they have used any images in their collages that they must include image credits when posting their pieces on their blogs, so that they comply with the copyright expectations regarding image appropriation.

Time Budget: (2 45-minute class sessions)
Day 1
6 Minutes – Introduction
35 Minutes – Production
4 Minutes – Cleanup

Day 2
5 Minutes – Introduction, Demonstration of Blog construction, Demonstration of Image scanning
10 Minutes – Image scanning
20 Minutes – Blog construction
10 Minutes – Students may explore the blogs of their classmates

Group critique where students will be encouraged to discuss not only their own work and one another’s work, but will also to elucidate upon any skills that have been garnered or honed throughout this activity.

Image Size

Safety Concerns:

Pennsylvania Art Education Association
Pennsylvania Department of Education
Sounds of the City, Scent of the Sea

Monday, October 13, 2008

"Daruma Doll" Lesson Plan

Teacher: Cydnee Perman Grade: 4

Title: Bodhidharma/Daruma Doll

Brief History/Background:
A Daruma is a spherical doll with a red painted body and a white face without pupils. Daruma dolls represent Bodhidharma, a Zen monk who meditated for almost 9 years while sitting in the zazen meditation posture. He didn't move at all, and after nine years he found he had lost the use of his arms and legs. In fact, they had withered away.

Most Daruma dolls are now manufactured by hand in Takasaki (Gunma prefecture). Throughout the year, but traditionally on New Year's Day, one makes a wish or sets a goal and paints one black pupil onto the Daruma doll. When the goal is reached or the wish comes true one then paints on the second pupil and dispose the doll on the following New Year's Day.

Darumas are made with no arms or legs. They have weighted bottoms so that no matter how you roll them, they will always return right side up. Some say this symbolizes the spirit of patience, perseverance, and determination shown by the priest.

9.1 Production, Performance, and Exhibition of Dance, Music, Theatre and Visual Arts – Students will create a Japanese Daruma doll.
9.2 Historical and Cultural Contexts – Students will be introduced to the history of the Buddhist priest Bodhidharma and become familiarized with the cultural significance of the Daruma dolls.
9.4 Aesthetic Response – Students will discuss the aesthetics of how everyday objects, such as toys, can be considered art.
7.4 The Human Characteristics of Places and Regions – Students will learn one significant tradition of the Japanese people.
12.5 World Languages in the Community (Content Standards) – Students will learn the Daruma doll chant in Japanese and English.

To create a Daruma doll and play the game associated with the tradition of the dolls.

1. Students will be introduced to the history of the Buddhist priest Bodhidharma and become familiarized with the cultural significance of the Daruma dolls.
2. Students will appreciate how everyday objects, such as toys, can be considered art.
3. Students will construct a Daruma doll and appreciate the traditional game that accompanies their presence in the celebration of the Japanese New Year.

1. A completed Daruma doll.

Resource Materials/Visual Aids:
• Teaching board explicating the project and displaying photographs of Daruma dolls and toys.
• Completed exemplar Daruma doll.
• Another visual aid (teaching board) that has the Japanese and English versions of the Daruma chant.

• Oval balloons
• Newspaper
• Wheat paste
• Tempera paint
• Paintbrushes

Teacher Preparation:
• Research of the Daruma doll tradition, and research of Bodhidharma.
• Construction of a Daruma exemplar.
• Construction of a teaching board.


Introduction: “Can anyone tell me how they celebrate the New Year with friends or family?” Explain what Daruma dolls are and the tradition associated with them in the celebration of the Japanese New Year. Continue to explain the history behind the Daruma doll (the history of Bodhidharma).

1. Blow up oval balloons.

2. Tear up lots of strips of paper and soak them in wheat paste. Cover the balloon completely with the strips. Let dry.

3. Add extra layers of strips to the bottom, rounded end. This will give the bottom the extra weight it needs so that the daruma will end up in an upright position.

4. The daruma is traditionally painted red, the color of the robes worn by the priests. Paint the body and the features on the face. Remember not to paint the eyes yet.

5. Make a wish and paint one eye. Be patient.

6. Explain that when the wish comes true, students should paint the other eye.

7. To play the game, the teacher and students sit in a circle with their legs and arms folded. They sway from side to side in rhythm and chant in unison:

Daruma-san, Daruma-san Mr. Daruma, Mr. Daruma
Nira miko shimasho Let us stare at each other
Warattara dame yo You had better not laugh
Ichi ni san shi go One, two, three, four, five

Students should return brushes to the sink area, where they should also wash their hands. The game will only be played once the Daruma dolls are completed and have had a chance to dry (at the beginning of the class following the class in which we paint the dolls). I will call on one student from each table to return the other materials to me at the front of the room (including trays of wheat paste for the first class, and jars of paint during the second class).

This lesson, because we will be constructing a specific form (the Daruma dolls), may restrict creativity of the students. We will use the traditional red and black paint that is customarily used to create the Daruma dolls. Therefore, evaluation/assessment of the students production will be a reflection of work habits and contributions to group discussion.

Determine whether each student’s participation for each category was:
Average, or
Needs work

Was the student cooperative & generous in discussions & in helping others without doing it for them?
Were good questions asked?

Work Habits
Did the student stay on the job?
Were conversations with classmates about the artwork, not other topics?

Did the student participate in cleanup in a timely and energy efficient manner?

If you could create a garden that reflects ideals of peace and harmony, what would it include? Draw a picture of this garden the way you imagine it in your head. [Next week we will be going on a field trip to the Fairmount Park Japanese House and Garden.]

Time Budget:
Class 1:
5 minutes – Introduction
3 minutes – Distribution of materials
32 minutes – Construction of Daruma dolls
5 minutes – Cleanup

Class 2:
3 minutes – Review discussion of what we did in last class
5 minutes – Handing out of Daruma doll forms (unpainted), and distribution of materials
32 minutes – Painting of Daruma dolls, possible time to work on extension activity
5 minutes – Cleanup

*During the first 10 minutes of the next class we will be playing the Daruma game.


We will chant the Daruma song in Japanese, with their English translations on a teaching board at the front of the room:
Daruma-san, Daruma-san Mr. Daruma, Mr. Daruma
Nira miko shimasho Let us stare at each other
Warattara dame yo You had better not laugh
Ichi ni san shi go One, two, three, four, five

Bodhidharma - a Zen monk who meditated for almost 9 years while sitting in the zazen meditation posture so that his legs were of no use anymore.

Safety Concerns:
None. (Excluding possible extreme wheat allergies).