Maori Pattern Crayon Batik, Fourth Grade+
A Brief History:
The Maori use of spirals is directly linked to their beliefs about the world. The unfurling of a young fern (koru) signifies harmony, growth, and new beginnings. The maori take the spiral shape from the koru and use it all over in their artwork. In this lesson, students will take inspiration from the images of the Maori that have been presented by the teacher. They will create a crayon batik inspired by patterns of the Maori.
For this lesson, you will need:
- Thick White Paper
- Assortment of Crayons
- Paint Brushes
- Black Watercolor
- Cups of Water
- Wax Paper (or similar material)
- No. 2 Pencils
Note: I like to teach the importance of respect in my classes. This respect is for the materials, the environment, and the students themselves, and their peers. Please go over the importance of using the materials properly before beginning this lesson. This includes reinforcing the fact that other students years from now will want to use these crayons to make art, too. If students break a crayon, a silly but conceptually reinforcing "punishment" will be to stand up in front of the class and do a 10 second haka.
1. Have students begin by talking about different images that they remember about the Maori. Have them define "pattern". Talk about the importance and difference of positive and negative space.
2. Let students use no. 2 pencils to sketch out their Maori-inspired patterns.
3. Students will apply a thick layer of crayon on their positive space.
4. Students will make a watercolor wash with intense black pigment over the top of their artwork. Do this on top of wax paper or a similar material to prevent watercolors from getting on the tables.
5. Allow the work to dry.
6. Potential Extension: Use bookbinding methods to create a book. The Maori have a lot of mythology, so maybe students can fill their book up with stories that they create.
Art terms for this lesson:
Line, Color, Shape, Repetition, Emphasis, Balance, Contrast, Unity, Positive Space, Negative Space, Pattern