Friday, November 28, 2014

How To Make An 'Egyptian' Mummy

Ancient Egypt is one subject that the kids always love to learn about in art class. Who can't resist a good mummy story!

The whole history of pyramids, pharaohs and mummies can be quite fascinating. I have a few different versions of making mummies, but the following is one my favorites. 

Here's how we design them!!!

We start out reviewing the whole history of the pyramids, the ancient Egyptian religious system, with their gods and goddesses, and the mummification process. After that we're ready to make our mummies.

The ancients  mummies  had pectorals  on their chest designed in  the image  of  the  Egyptian  god  Horus. The Egyptians believed that Horus guided them to the afterlife. So  the  first thing require is that the kids design  a pectoral for the mummy's chest. They can choose any symbol for  their pectoral (except Horus- it's already been done), but it must  have two wings on either side. The  mummies above have an eagle pectoral and a doughnut pectoral.

The kids then get an overview of Egyptian hieroglyphics system. They have to write a word at least 5 letters long, using the hieroglyph symbols, that they put on somewhere their mummy. Either horizontal or vertical.

They then have them make up 3 'hieroglyph' symbols of their own, that they add to their mummy. The Egyptian Hieroglyphs symbols were representation of objects  important to  Egyptian life- things such as water, loafs of bread, grass reeds, etc. The kid- designed 'hieroglyph' symbols should be objects important to their life.

Other things they are required to add to their mummies are- some kind of a crown, a few strands of jeweled necklaces and jewels in their hair.  The mummies  needed this to make sure they didn't lose their  social status in the afterlife. So they were buried in their 'bling'.

Below are a couple of mummies that kids designed in their 'own' style. Some times I let the kids do that if they're really creative and have a vision of how it will be differentiated.  Once in a while you gotta let the kids go their own way! Use some discretion and give 'em a little leeway. I think these came out really nice.

What do you think of our Egyptian mummies? Would they work in you art room? I'd love to hear what you think about them. You can comment below.

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