Local textile cultures called "fibersheds" offer an alternative to mass production by seeking to utilize regional agriculture, enhance ecological balance, and strengthen communities.
Students view a photo essay, "The Art of Making Wool," by Mark Andrew Boyer, depicting the story of a sheep farmer in California who educates the public about wool and fiber arts.
In this lesson, students examine natural and synthetic fibers. Students explore the photo essay in groups and discuss how the sheep farmer offers an alternative to mass production with a focus on the themes of resiliency and sustainability. As an activity, students are asked to bring to class one sample of a natural fabric and one sample of a synthetic fabric. Reflective writing prompts are also included for students to demonstrate their understanding of the story.
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