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Lesson Three

Lesson Title: Creating a Textile Museum Piece from the Islamic Empire
Grade Level: 6-12
Subjects: World History, Language Arts, and Visual Arts
Estimated Time of Completion: 3-4 class periods

I. Objectives
II. Standards
III. Materials Needed
IV. Procedure
V. Assessment Suggestions
VI. Extensions/Adaptations

  1. Instructional Objectives:
    • Students will have the opportunity create a drawing of an Islamic textile piece from the height of the Islamic Empire.
    • Students will have the opportunity to describe the textile designs as symbolic representations of life in Islam during the 11th and 12th centuries.
    • Students will have the opportunity to create a museum description for their textile piece including information gathered from research about the Islamic Empire.
    • Students will have the opportunity to share their findings with their classmates.

  2. Standards
    • This lesson correlates to the following national standards for social studies, language arts, and visual arts, established by the Mid-continent research Regional Education Lab:
    World History:
    • Understands the spread of Islam in Southwest Asia and the Mediterranean region
    • Understands the influence of Islamic ideas and practices on other cultures and social behavior
    • Understands the effect of geography on different groups and their trade practices
    • Understands the significance of Baghdad
    • Understands how the Muslims spread Islamic beliefs and established their empire
    • Understands significant aspects of Islamic civilization
    • Understands challenges to Muslim civilization
    Language Arts:
    • Uses the general skills and strategies of the writing process
    • Gathers and uses information for research purposes
    • Uses a variety of sources to gather information
    • Uses listening and speaking strategies for different purposes
    • Uses viewing skills and strategies to understand and interpret visual media
    Visual Arts:
    • Knows how to use structures and functions of art
    • Understands the visual arts in relation to history and cultures
    • Knows how ideas and emotions are expressed in the various art forms
    • Knows how characteristics of the arts vary within a particular historical period or style
    • Knows that the visual arts have both a history and a specific relationship to various cultures
    • Identifies specific works of art as belonging to particular cultures, times, and places
    • Knows how history, culture, and the visual arts can influence each other

  3. Materials Needed:
  4. Procedures:
    This lesson is based on Video Two (The Awakening) of the PBS video series Islam: Empire of Faith. (See adaptation section at the end of the lesson for suggestions if the video is not available.) Students will have the opportunity to learn about the importance of the textile industry to the strength and stability of the Islamic Empire in the 11th and 12th centuries. Students will have the opportunity to create a textile drawing and museum description.
    1. To determine students' prior knowledge, conduct a class brainstorm session about the textile industry and its importance to the Islamic Empire.
    2. After the brainstorm, coach a discussion of why textiles might have been important to the Empire, and how textiles influenced trade.
    3. Watch the Video Two section on textiles (students may watch entire video if they have not already). Video cue: 35.20.
    4. Have students fill out the Video Note Guide as they view the clip. (The teacher may which to stop the video to discuss important points and allow students to take thorough notes).
    5. After the video, debrief and discuss what students have learned. Allow students to compare notes. (You may decide whether or not to make the notes a graded assignment).
    6. Assign Textile Project.
      1. Students will research Islamic textile designs. Allow students time to research using the Internet, library resources, and possibly reviewing the video in small groups for additional information/note taking. Students should visit the Culture section of this site for more information on textiles. Students should also review the Timeline on this site, for historical context. (Additional resource Web sites are listed at the end of this procedures section.) Students might also use a class textbook (if applicable).
      2. Students will look for information on designs and their meaning, materials used, textile creation dates, places of origin, and the importance of textiles to the Islamic Empire.
      3. Students will design a textile piece (clothing, blanket, rug) on white paper and color it according to dye colors available in the time of the Empire.
      4. Students will synthesize research information into a detailed museum description to be glued on the tag board under the textile drawing (see sample project diagram ).
      5. Each tag board description should include:
        Materials used
        Date of origin
        Place of origin
        Meaning of design
        Importance to Islamic Empire
      6. Students will use the scoring rubric as a guide as they develop their project.
      7. Once the project is completed, students will present their textile piece and description to the class.

    WEBSITE RESOURCES: (Note: These links will take you away from PBS Online)

  5. Assessment Recommendations:
  6. Extensions/Adaptations:
    • For upper level grades, you may want students to write a short research paper about Islamic textiles and their importance to the Empire.
    • For lower level grades or special needs students you can pair students together to make this a partner or even small group project. You can also adapt the depth of the textile description.
    • For schools without the video, use the suggested Web sites to gain a general understanding of the creation and importance of textiles to the Islamic Empire.