On a beautiful autumn day, I found a great use for the pieces of wood. After teaching about Fibonacci numbers and how they can be found in art, architecture, music, poetry, and nature, I decided to take my students outside to find these numbers in the outdoor classroom. This was the beginning of the creation of our "live" quilt.
Each child received one of the 12"x12" wood pieced to use as a quilt square. They had loads of fun running through throughout the outdoor classroom finding a treasure of items to use for their square. They gathered a variety of twigs, leaves, flowers, rocks, seeds, pine cones and anything they thought would enhance their ideas for their square. The enthusiasm displayed by each child was contagious. They admired each other's quilt designs and shared nature items that they were not using for themselves.
There were two main requirements for each quilt block: a border of some sort and something they found that contained a Fibonacci number. When all the quilt blocks were completed, they were set side-by-side to build the "live" quilt. The students found large branches which we used as a frame for the quilt. We worked on math skills as we determined the layout and size of the quilt. Having the size of each block 12"x12" made this easy to teach measurement and how many inches in a foot, and how many feet in a yard.
Each square was unique and a piece of art. The students pointed out the items on their block that contained the Fibonacci number. Some children created a picture with the nature items while others created beautiful designs. I took individual photos of each quilt block so the students could have a record their square. I then transferred the photos onto fabric. After sewing all the pieces of fabric together, our "live" quilt was transformed into a real quilt that we kept in the classroom. With the help of Mother Nature and the artist within all of my students, we enjoyed creating a piece of artwork that had a practical purpose.
So, the next time you see a great bargain, I suggest you grab it. You never know when it will become part of a teachable moment.