Diversity Paper Quilt




Introduction: Diversity Paper Quilt

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By making this Diversity quilt in the home, students will have a visual reminder that although each of us is different, we are also the same.  The Diversity quilt allows students to express themselves on their own square while having a border that represents the classroom.  This provides a visual classroom reminder of the ways that we are the different yet the same.  For this sample, I actually made a diversity quilt with my family.

1 Card stock Square per student: Have various colors available for students to choose.  The card stock squares should each be of equal size.
chalk board / smart board / chart paper / etc. to write on
Various Art Materials
Border strips: The border strips should be long enough so that it will be able to go around the perimeter of the quilt.
Tape: this will be used to "sew" the quilt together.

Learning Objectives:
Students will be able to name ways in which they are different.
Students will be able to use a variety of art material to express themselves.
Students will be able to visualize how they are the same.
Students will be able to visualize how they are different.

Step 1: Make the Border Part 1 - List the Ways We Are the Same.

The classroom will choose a quilt title, and then led by teacher discussion, the students will name ways that they are the same as each other.  Some examples can be:
Grade Level
Teacher Name

These will be written on the chalk board / smart board / chart paper (pretty much whatever you have available as a teacher) for all to see.  The list should be lengthy enough that it will evenly fill the border of the quilt.  A smaller quilt will need less words as a larger quilt will need more.

Step 2: Make the Border Part 2 - Write the Border.

On the border paper, the teacher or another appointed person / student will put the title on.  Then they will write the ways the students listed as being the same.  These should be evenly spread so they go around the whole border. 

Step 3: Make the Squares Part 1 - List the Ways We Are Different.

Led by teacher discussion, the students will name ways that they are the different from each other.  Some examples can be:
Who lives at home - ie) Mom, Dad, Grandma, Grandpa, Friends
Favorites (Color, subject, Best Friend, animal, etc.)

The teacher will explain that although you may have things similar with other students, we are all different.  We may have the same favorite color but I have a brother and sister and you have two brothers.  The students will write in their notebooks the things that represent them personally.

Step 4: Make the Squares Part 2 - Draw Your Square.

Once the students have determined ways that make them individuals, they will have the chance to transfer this to their square.  The students should be encouraged to use squares that represent their favorite colors to have this feature be more prevalent.  They would then be allowed to draw or write their representations of themselves (ie) pictures of family members and pets, book covers, movie titles)

Step 5: Make the Quilt

Once all the students have completed their squares, they should be arranged to form a rectangle.  All the squares should be facing up (if an up exists).  If blank squares are needed for fillers, they should be added spread from each other to be less noticeable.  These would be held together by taping the backs.  Then the edging would be fitted around the perimeter of the quilt, with the title at the top.  This will also be held together by taping the backs.  If lamination is an option, this will help the quilt stay together and prevent it from getting damaged.

Step 6: Explanation

Once the quilt is put together, the teacher should have a student led discussion asking them what they notice about the quilt.  The student's should be able to see that we are all held together by our similarities, yet our differences are what makes the quilt look beautiful.

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    10 years ago on Introduction

    I like it. I spent an inordinate amount of time connecting the images to the text around the perimeter. I was particularly curious about the hula-hooper. Is that person named Snowy? Is it mom? Or is that just a personification of happiness?

    Questions aside, this is an accessible project that I'd have used when my class started to get a little chippy or to address a bullying issue over difference. Thanks for sharing.


    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    The sample here, I made with my family so Snowy is our dog. The text on the outside is how we are the same, so in this case we're a family, we all like warcraft and computers, we have a puppy named Snowy, and we added my mom (since she wasn't there to make a square of her own). Then the squares are mine (purple), my sisters (red) (member sailormoon22491), my husbands (blue), and my dads (green). The internal squares represent us as individuals.

    This would be great for addressing bullying in the classroom because it gives the students a visual of the fact that in the end we are all the same. I hope to one day do it within a classroom myself :)


    Also, that red square looks AWESOME! that person has some decent art skills lol love ya <3