Monday, October 24, 2011

Middle Eastern cityscapes

Central Idea: Architecture often reflects culture. 
Lines of Inquiry: religious architecture, cityscapes from around the world, landscape vs cityscape

We discussed buildings and I showed a powerpoint of a mix of middle eastern and western cityscapes.  I wanted them to figure out that religion can be key element that determines what a city's skyline looks like.  We used texture rubbing plates and opalescent cray pas for the domes and for the cut paper borders.

This being Saudi, 90% of my students are Muslim.  The ones who haven't really traveled had NO idea that the big church that I was flashing on the screen is where Christian people pray. So interesting.  I grew up in the suburban USA and I definitely would have had no idea what a mosque was when I was a kid. :)

This unit is a perfect blend with their next unit, which will be patterns.  One of the Grade 1 teachers said that in their pre-assessment all the western kids made very linear ABABA style patterns where the middle eastern ones all made radial designs right off the bat.  Lots of experience with patterns at the mosque I think!


  1. These are brilliant! What is the border made with- cut paper? I've also taught in international schools (PYP too)- am thinking of returning to it as international schools are just amazing to teach in and I miss them.

  2. thanks! we just put the border on yesterday-- we made texture rubbings with the same opalescent cray pas we used to color the mosques-- then chopped them up and added some gold pieces.

    yeah, international schools are pretty great! where did you teach?

  3. Princess Artypants: I was in the Dominican Republic, then South Africa, and then France. I miss it.