Thursday, January 2, 2020

One for All: Body Mural

As sweet as my "special needs" students are, it can be a challenge for many of them to find their place in a group. I wanted to help my kids learn that they each play an important part of of their class and help them appreciate the roles their peers play. After inviting students to share ways that they contribute to their community of learners, I had them each choose part of their body and lay down on a large sheet of paper to be traced: usually a torso, arm, foot, or head. 

Their bodies overlapped, dividing the space into large, medium, and small shapes. I hot glued the marker lines to make it tactile for my students with no vision, and outlined them in a student-chosen color, for my low vision students. Then I let them fill in the spaces with tempera. 

Just as every part of a body serves a purpose, and shape and color in the composition matters, everyone in the class contributed to the final piece. It wouldn't be the same if someone had chosen not to participate. I wish I could teach in an hour or two that every life has its place, but it will take time for them to grasp this concept. All I can do is reinforce it until they figure it out.

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