Students in this unit will learn about the purpose of masks from the Hispanic culture. They will study the influence masks had on Hispanic society. After investigating uses of masks in various cultures, students will create masks that relate to their own experiences. In groups of 3-4 students will create an Hispanic mask and a mask representing personal and cultural issues in today's society.
Instructional Plan Title: International Festival - masks
Keywords: International, festival, Foreign Language, interdisciplinary, masks, art
Curriculum Area: Foreign Language - Spanish
Grade Level: Advanced 8th grade
Appropriate Group Size: Whole Class
Time Expected to Complete Instructional Plan: 3-4 days (which leads to a culminating project over a 3 month period).
- Learn about the purpose of masks from the Hispanic culture.
- Study the influence masks had on Hispanic society.
- After investigating uses of masks in various cultures, students will create masks that relate to their own experiences. In groups of 3-4 students will create an Hispanic mask and a mask representing personal and cultural issues in today's society.
Materials and Resources:
Internet Image Databases:
- Frank, Vivian, and Deborah Jaffe. Making Masks. Laguna Hills: Walter Foster Publishing, 1992.
- Grove Dictionary of Art
- Shaffer, Frederick. Mola Designs. Toronto: General Publishing Company, 1982.
- Bartok, Mira, and Christine Ronan. Stencils Ancient Mexico. Glenview: Scott Foresman, 1992.
- Erickson, Mary. Mexican American Murals. 15 July 1999. http://www.artsednet.getty.edu/ArtsEdNet/LACN/Worlds/Murals/index.html
- Slide projector & over head transparency.
- Celluclay, paint and assorted materials to create masks.
Corbis Images: Located at IUPUI University Library Community Project Site
- GE002365 Woman sculpture by Picasso
- CS001092 Calla Lily Vendor by Diego Rivera
- IH049112 Composition by Joan Miro
- IH077086 Door in Cozumel, Mexico
- FM001057 Mexican Posada Procession in Chicago
- IH058868 Jaguar Masks by Sergio Dorantes
- FT0001112 Mexican & El Salvadorian Soccer by Hector Mata
- BX002495 Julio Cesar Chavez and Oscar de la Hoya
- ZEJ120528B Selena Holding Grammy
- FT0014852 France - Music - Ricky Martin
- The purpose of this lesson is to develop an understanding of the global appeal of masks. Students should be aware that masks are one of humankind's earliest forms of cultural expression.
- Collect materials: slides, prints, books, and examples of masks.
- Create a transparency of a funerary mask, preferably from Mexico.
- Prepare student handouts on mask-making and a rubric.
- Show collection of slides, prints, books, and examples of masks from the Hispanic culture.
- Show transparency of the funerary mask from the Pre-Columbian Collection at Duke University Museum of Art (Online: Grove Dictionary of Art).
- Students will ask When, What, Why, Who, Where questions (Inquiry-based). This should spark a discussion about funerary masks. Serpentine Funerary Mask, Teotihuacan, Mexico. This mask is made with many fine cut pieces of serpentine, coral, and shell. Masks of this type were meant to record and preserve the spirit of the deceased.
- Students should take notes on the discussion.
Day 2 & 3:
- Show an example of a traditional mask in Mexico (one that the teacher has created and painted) and contrast to a catchers mask used in baseball. Class will compare and contrast the two.
- Hand out mask-making assignment (supplemental material) and discuss in class. Students will make 2 masks and should work in groups of 3-4.
In groups of 3-4, students will make 2 masks. One mask will be a traditional Hispanic mask and the other will be present day mask.
- Must be related to Hispanic culture.
- Must include a paragraph summary of the masks history, i.e. What country did it come from? What does the mask represent? What is the story behind the mask?
- Must be a ritual from my culture - this might include contemporary rituals such as a school dance, getting ready for school in the morning, Halloween, Team celebrations, sports mask, etc.
- Must include a paragraph summary of the masks history, i.e. Why did the creators of the mask choose this? What is the cultural and historical background of the mask?
- Celluclay: clay to design the mask.
- Paints to decorate mask.
- Accessories from home: feathers, beads, strings, sequins
|| Needs Improvement 1
|| Satisfactory 5
||Excellent Work 10
|1. Traditional mask has qualities that represent the past.
|2. Traditional mask is related to a Spanish-speaking country, which is mentioned in the paragraph.
3. Explanation of the traditional mask is clearly understood in the paragraph.
4. Every student would easily recognize the contemporary mask.
5. The contemporary mask paragraph includes the cultural and historical background.
Total Possible: 50
- Prepare students for this graded writing assignment the night before by having them study their notes on the funerary mask.
- Show transparency of the funerary mask (as shown on day 1). Using their own blank sheet of paper, students must write as many key points, about the mask and its cultural context, as possible.
- Students should be graded by stating the role played by the mask, chronological and regional development, and traditional entities.
Describe how this instructional plan could be extended or expanded:
- Culminating activity: the masks will be used in a skit as part of the entertainment for an International Festival.
- The class may work together and paint a mural of masks from a variety of cultures.
- Invite local Hispanic artists to make a presentation to the class.
- Take a field trip to an art museum to view and discuss examples of masks from various cultures.
- Interdisciplinary units can be created with the art teacher.
Provide family activities if applicable:
- The family can make a mask that is representative of their family heritage. The mask can be used as a decoration, at a family reunion, teach younger children to appreciate the design and expression of the mask, or as an item to be shared with distant relatives.
- I would suggest buying a mask to use in class as an example. For example,
my husband bought a Mexican mask made of cork on EBAY.com. My 9 year old daughter
painted it with traditional Mexican colors. It was a family project given
to me to share with my classes.
- I would also check such stores as Pier1 and Wacammaw to find cultural masks.
- This lesson is just a section of my plan to create an International Festival
among the Foreign Language Department, Social Studies, Music, Language Arts,