Mountain Crafts and Traditions and Their Changes Over Time

Asheville Dance









Grade Level: Grades 4

Subjects: Social  Studies, English, Computer and Technology, Information Skills

By: Pat Dunford

Swain West Elementary School- Swain County

This unit is designed for 4th graders studying North Carolina history. Students will explore aspects of mountain life around the turn of the century as well as aspects of mountain life today and address changes to crafts and traditions over time. Students will be active participants in quilting, carving, cooking, blacksmithing, singing, dancing, soap-making, and other craft activities. Students will determine criteria for evaluating artifacts and apply that knowledge in categorizing various materials found in both the indoor and outdoor classroom. Students will interview someone who practices a mountain craft or tradition and will then complete a PowerPoint presentation using the information obtained in the interview. Students will also participate in a working field trip to the Mountain Farm Museum in which they dress in period costumes and reenact life on a turn of the century mountain farm. Upon their return to school, students will then take part in a debate about the proper use of the Farmstead and reflect on the changes to mountain traditions over time. This unit is an on-going study encompassing the entire year, so the lesson plan base can be added to as necessary when further connections are made to the curriculum.

Adventures of the American Mind- Western Carolina University


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