The 6th grade is well into their Greek Mask Making Unit (thanks again donors!) and it couldn't be more fun. The picture to the left will take you to more photos of the experience, but here's a little on the process.
The students started out researching Greek myths/plays and chose a character that they found interesting. Using a template they began designing a mask based on their character. I have been really impressed with the types of designs I've been seeing. Some are half-face masks, some full-face, some include patterns and colors to show character... it's really been fun to listen to them explain their thinking on the designs.
Then our Assistant Principal, Mr. Fay, came into the classroom and let me demonstrate the process of laying on the plaster strips on his face. It all starts with proper clothing, and a plan. Then the subject covers their face with vaseline to prevent the plaster from sticking and tugging on the eyebrows. The person laying down the plaster 3 inch by 1 inch plaster strips carefully dips them in water, presses the excess water out places the strip on their partners face. Two to four layers later, you have a base for your mask. After about 5 minutes the mask is dry enough to carefully remove. A day later, the plaster is set, and ready for additional molded features. The students got a big kick out of this(especially the vaseline) and I'm pretty sure Mr. Fay had a good time with it too. I know I had fun.
After the demo it was just a case of getting our materials ready and turning the drama room into a delightful mess. For their first mask experience, everyone has been doing extremely well. It is amazing to see the students collaborate and cooperate with such proficiency. As they worked with their partners to create the base mask, I noticed that each team was doing a fantastic job taking care of their team mate. It can be a bit scary to sit in a chair 30 minutes while someone places gooey plaster gauze on your face, but each team made sure to ask their partner if they were okay and took measures to ensure their safety and comfort. Phenomenal students, plain and simple.
Check out the Gallery for more pictures of the experience and stay tuned as I add more!