Geography Through Art: Ivory Chessmen

World geography is much more fun with a few hands-on projects. To go along with our geography course, I purchased Geography Through Art and each week we are trying to complete a project just for fun.


The great thing about this book is that it is very open-ended and it has projects for all ages.

For this week, as we begin a study of Scandinavia, I planned out the Lewis Chessmen project. This project was designed to be done with clay but when I gave the assignment to my boys I told them that they could complete the project any way they wished. They could research and write a report, sketch the chessman, make the clay model, or come up with their own version as long as they learned something about the chessman. I try to keep in mind with my high school students that they have different ways of tackling a problem and it is the process of solving the problem that is the most important to me in the long run.


My Lego guy decided to read online and then design his own elaborate chessman with Legos. He says it is a rook.He felt that the Lego piece was just a fun way to follow up on what he learned doing a quick research.

He remembered that his sister had sent him a postcard of the chessmen from the British Museum and that made the project even more special.

My other son decided to use Crayola Air Dry Clay to make a chessman. He did some online research and then looked at several online images before he started his work.


As always, the assignment was a little harder than he anticipated. He worked for quite some time and did a great job in the end.


I highly recommend the Geography Through Art book, Crayola Air Dry Clay, and this sort of open ended assignment.

Barb-Harmony Art Mom

If you are popping over from the Hands-On Carnival (which will post on Monday, September 14th), you may be interested in reading more about our World Geography course that we are working through with our high schoolers. Here is a link: World Geography for High School Students

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