Thursday, February 18, 2016

5th Grade Plush Creations

Who knew that kids would absolutely love sewing? Oh, that's right. I've taught this lesson several times. I knew that. That's why I keep teaching it. I love it when a tough 5th grade boy comes up to ask if his stitching is neat enough. That will never get old. 
I ran this lesson pretty similar to how I've done it in the past, but allowed a little more freedom this year. Originally, students made monsters. This year I told them they could make anything. The results, as usual, were really nice. 

I love how much attitude the banana has. (Bananatude?)
There isn't a whole lot of technical expertise that is required for this project. That's great for me because my crowning achievement in sewing was making a pair of boxer shorts in 8th grade home economics class. It's simple enough that every student is more than capable of making something cool, but students who have experience with sewing can really run with it and make some cool stuff. 

This guy is named Mr. Pillow. It was originally
going to be an iPad, but I like how my student
reworked his idea to make it more successful. 
My biggest suggestion with the project is making sure that students work with large enough pieces of fabric. I purchased 9x12 sheets of felt. Each student gets two, so the final piece winds up being fairly large. I originally had students use only one piece of felt, so the work was smaller and a little more difficult to work with. I keep all of the fabric scraps throughout the project and students use those for details to glue on with fabric glue once their work has been sewn and stuffed. 

This project is definitely in line with my idea of challenging 5th graders with materials as opposed to overly technical and skill based lessons. I really think it keeps a bigger percentage of students engaged and truly enjoying what they are doing in the art room. 

A Harry Potter book with stuffed covers and actual felt pages!


Mrs. Nguyen said...

I am so impressed with this! Your kids did a fantastic job!
I've always done felt angry bird plushies with my 5th grade... but this year I was going to switch it up and do Minecraft instead (Angry Birds who!?).
But this post has me thinking again!

How many days did your students work on this??

Zach Stoller said...

Mrs. N,
Thanks! I've really tried to allow for as much student choice as possible this year. I can't commit to a full choice classroom because my philosophy just doesn't fit to be able to do that. I've really felt that adding more choice within a set project really keeps my kids engaged. I think we worked on this for about six 45 minute classes.

The Magnificent Paintbrush said...

These are great, bravo!

Wendy said...

I love this! I get so excited anytime I see sewing in the artroom! :-)

Jillian Nintze said...

Good work!