Room 317 third graders participated in a three-day paper mache African mask making workshop with Yunmee Kyong, paper mache artist and illustrator. Students first began the African mask making project by researching the symbolic meaning and purpose of masks in our social studies curriculum of communities around the world, specifically different African countries. After researching students chose a mask that they wanted to represent in paper mache, sketching and designing and deciding on the materials needed. Through the process of paper mache mask making they discovered the purpose of their masks and how art can overlap purpose. Students will no longer think of a mask as just a piece of art, but begin to understand it as a way of preserving history, cultural and traditional ways of life.
Above we illustrated our masks depicting paint and special materials and then we gave symbolic meaning and purpose to our masks.
Here we are using wallpaper paste, newspaper, paper rolls and cardboard to paper mache our masks.