Last Saturday a nice crowd joined me for a short accordion workshop, the first of what I hope will be a few months of these free, mini workshops to give us all some more practice with accordion folds.
The time was so short and it went so fast that it almost seemed like it didn’t happen at all. But I know it happened, mostly because I received some sweet notes, and even some photos afterwards.
Next session will be building upon this past one, so if you plan to come, and you missed out, take a look at the handout above.
This Saturday will be the same time -4 pm EST-, same zoom link as last week. I will show up about 10 minutes early if anyone want to chat, then by 2 minutes after the hour, demonstration starts, then zoom kicks us out at 30 minutes after the hour.
Paula Krieg is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.
For years, until she retired, I worked with an enthusiastic classroom teacher named Anna who loved seeing her students make books. Instead of teaching bookmaking skills she created a bookmaking corner in her classroom that included a little display of books that I had taught her how to make. These books were accompanied by written directions and a stack of paper. Anna’s third grade students had a great time making books independently.
I started a personal history project with my kids today, with the big idea that our histories are different but we learn about each other because we are a community. Students start with creating a personal history of 5-10 important events in their lives. What if I open it a bit and let kids work with paper in 3 dimensions? Someone wants a line, someone else a book, a spiral, a tree, a flexagon?
I was wondering if there are some formats that you could recommend that don’t require too much pre-teaching. Ideally kids can follow template/video.
Thinking about Anna’s bookmaking corner, I want to suggest a few books to Lana.
I decided to take this opportunity to finally get around to creating the StarBook/Cascading Book tutorial (at the top of this post) with video accompaniment:
This modular origami book can be tricky, but it is totally doable, The folding needs to be done precisely, folds need to be sharp, and it’s important to pay attention to the orientation of the modules as they get glued together.
Fact is though, that it looks tricker than it is. It’s a structure I highly recommend because it’s so dynamic.
The biggest problem with the origami pamphlet is that if you’re using regular copy paper, the book will be rather small, If this bothersome there are two good variations that result in a larger book (other than just finding a larger sheet of paper):
A way make a larger origami pamphlet is to use two sheets of paper to make two halves, then attach them together (use glue, tape, paper clips, staples? whatever ) like in the photo above. I call this half-or-an-origami pamphlet a book base.
An advantage of making a book this way is that, if composition paper is used, the lines will be going in the correct direction for writing on.
There are so many fabulous inventive book structures students can make, but sometimes it’s great to just fold a bunch of papers in half, secure them together, and be done with it. The problem here is that it is not obvious how to secure the pages together. A doable no-needle way to sew pages together in a classroom setting is to use a bit of string or yarn to do a modified pamphlet stitch.
There you have it, four books:
the Star Book,
the Cascading Book,
the Origami Pamphlet (with two variations) and
the Modified Pamphlet Stitch book
Lana’s note mentions a spiral. I’ve been playing with some spiraling pages lately, and I have something wonderful that I want to share, but the spiral deserves its own post: which will hopefully show up here in the near future.
The highlight of the day, for me, was making these sewn journals with 4th & 5th graders.
The book block was made from 4 pieces of 11″ x 17″ papers folding into origami pamphlets, then sewn together side-by-side. All the holes for sewing were punched by paper punches.
Wallpaper-sample covers were attached by threading ribbons through holes in the cover and endpapers.
This project ran a bit over time. We were suppose to finish in 45 minuets, but it took 50 minutes. No one complained 🙂
These books, like most of the other books made yesterday, were constructed without glue, The only exception is the envelope books. I didn’t exclude the use of glue intentionally, but I guess I think about glueless structures more often than not.
This was the last class of this school season. Now I can get back to some housecleaning.
Tonight I’m finishing up gathering supplies for the first day of what is always my most challenging, and most satisfying, school visit of the my teaching-artist season. I have been visiting schools in the Adirondacks for many years, but I have spent the most time in this one particular school. I get to work with nine grade levels, pre-K through 7th grade. I need to create nine completely different projects, which will go from beginning to completion over six days, spread out through the month of March.
In the interest of finishing up the details, and getting to bed (last night, daylight savings time kicked in, so getting up tomorrow morning will be a challenge) I am going to list the nine projects for the nine grade levels, then I’m going to try to write about them over the course of the month.
PreK: the teachers asked that we do a project with the students’ names. We’ll thread beads and cover weight papers on to shoelace-tipped yarn, write a letter on one side of the card, and a picture which starts with that letter on the back. See photo above,
Kindergarten: Accordion Book with pockets, a variation of structure in the picture below.
First Grade: A folding triptych about Alaska and an animal that lives in Alaska. Will include a pop-up, a pocket to hold research papers, and a poetry page. We’ll color the sky with Northern Lights.
Second Grade: A book that folds up like a valise, that has pockets within for a “passport,” a folding map, postcards, a boarding ticket, and little books with information about a country that the student is studying.
Third Grade: We’ll make a journal for the students to use however they want.
Fourth Grade: This is the class that will be making a Zero to One Fractions book that I’ve been writing about
Fifth Grade: I still have some planning to do on this project, but it will likely be a social studies based project made from units of an Origami Base, which opens and closes in a dynamic way.
Sixth Grade: This group will use tabloid size papers, folded in half, and bound, in four separate sections, with large rubber bands. The students will use these with their English teacher, between now and the end of the year, as a memory catcher.
Seventh Grade: We’ll fold down and trim a large, 35″ x 23 ” paper into an 8.75″ x 5.75″ pamphlet, which students will sew, glue in to a hinge piece, add soft covers, and decorate. The book will go with them to their English class, for content to be added between now and the end of the school year.
I keep everything organized ( I hope) in a notebook that I can make in about five minutes, that looks like this.
Hopefully I will be posting all of these projects. But now it’s time to wrap things up for the night.