• white drawing paper or
• teabags to color paper
• permanent markers
• examples of maps
future. Memories and goals were
translated into symbolic images.
The images served as landmarks of
their memories on their maps.
The next step was preparing the
paper. We dyed white drawing paper
using teabags and brewed tea, creating little pools where students
wanted darker lines. While the
paper was drying, students began
sketching ideas for the shape of the
country on their maps. We looked
carefully at a variety of maps for
ideas. We talked about characteristics of maps and which elements needed to be added to their
Students listed things like a key
or legend, landmark indicators, patterned regions such as mountains
and forests, a variety of lines, and
even decorative images such as
whales or shipwrecked boats. After
the paper was dry and the sketch
was completed, students drew their
images on the tea-stained paper.
They painted the maps using watercolor and outlined images with
marker or pen.
Students intentionally take advantage of the qualities and characteristics of art media, techniques, and
processes to enhance communication of their experiences and ideas.
The results were exhilarating! Students were able to discover things
about themselves and their artistic
abilities through the introspection
necessary to create these maps. Students created beautiful works of art
that represented their culture, their
lives, and their dreams (not to mention all the useful information they
learned about maps).
Stephanie A. Kramer is a visual arts
teacher at John Bowne High School in
Flushing, New York. firstname.lastname@example.org