Jewelry Making Across Cultures and Shadow Puppetry: Performing in the Community

Educator Bruce Hooper of the New Jersey Regional Day School (Camden County) received two grants from the NJEA Frederick L. Hipp Foundation for Excellence in Education.  The first grant of $3,288 will be used to implement the program Jewelry Making Across Cultures.  This program will be offered as an elective for students in three special education self-contained classes.  

Students will choose 10 pictures of jewelry from 17 to be placed in an exhibit.  They will discuss their choices for aesthetic value, and gather background information on symbols from four different cultures including Egyptian, Celtic, Native American, and West African.

The students will use the Internet to research the symbols and incorporate them into the designs of jewelry, utilizing a new jewelry technique of increasing complexity with each new design and symbols of each new culture studied. 

The hand-on nature of all aspects of the arts standards makes the program an excellent way for students to be involved in art, to learn about other cultures, and to have an opportunity for creative self-expression.The second grant of $3,364 will be used to implement the program Shadow Puppetry: Performing in the Community.  This program will be offered to students from age 13 to 18, from self-contained, non-graded special education classes.

After viewing a shadow puppetry performance and listening to stories, the students will complete a story map and create a storyboard.  Students will then create figures for the shadow puppet production, create images, and incorporate a soundtrack into their presentation. 

Once complete, the students will perform their shadow puppet show for the youngest special education class and a group of students who will be undertaking the same project in the next cycle. 

Then the students will perform their puppet show within the community at the public library and at a senior center.  In addition to presenting their puppet show, this will provide an opportunity for the students to demonstrate and guide the audience in how to make and manipulate the shadow figures.

For further information, contact :

Bruce Hooper

(856) 423-9075