The Quilts: Student Activities

We have selected six types of quilts to highlight on this website. We provide background that includes an historical context, artist information, design elements and suggestions for ways to critically analyze the quilts. Activities for a specific age level are provided for the six quilt categories, but we hope teachers will adapt and modify the activities to the needs of their students.

Each of the downloads below contains low resolution photos of various quilt types. To see the quilts in more detail, you can reference the figures on our QUILT IMAGES page. These larger photos are also suitable for printing on your own color printer.

Please note that you will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to read the downloaded files. It is available free of charge and can be downloaded through the link on the bottom and top of this page. If your web browser already has the Acrobat plug-in installed, it will load directly into your browser window. You can circumvent and download the PDF file directly to your hard drive by pressing down the option key (Macintosh ) or alt key (Windows ) when clicking on the link.

Download (132 kb)

Remember Me
Album Quilt Activity (grades 3-8)

Students create a quilt for a special event.  Each student designs a 6 x 6 inch quilt square that shares something about him/herself.  Individual squares are then sewn together into an album quilt.  Alternative:  Create a paper album quilt.

Download (188 kb)

Go Crazy: Quilts as Group Process
Crazy Quilt Activity (grades 3-8)

Small groups of 5-8 students collaboratively create a crazy quilt. Each student chooses a symbolic design that has meaning to him/her or illustrates some meaningful event in her/his life on the quilt shapes chosen. Groups then create a paper replicas of their quilts, with individuals writing about the personal significance of the shape and symbols on the backside of each shape. Once assembled, the quilts can be publicly displayed.

Download (160 kb)

Nature Caught in Cloth (Making a Species Quilt)
Flower Quilt Activity (grades 6-8)

Using a flower garden quilt as a model, students individually create on paper a “species quilt,” illustrating what is being studied in science.  The student explains orally the subject or theme of his/her quilt.

Download (128 kb)

Quilts: A Geometric Challenge
Log Cabin Quilt Activity (grades 6-8)

Each student designs a 6 inch quilt square, drawn on paper at 1/2 scale.  Designs are then transferred onto fabric and individual squares may be sewn together into a class quilt.

Download (84 kb)

Making a Quilt Sandwich
Seal Party Quilt Activity (grades K-3)

Young students learn that a quilt is made of 3 different layers by making a paper quilt called a "quilt sandwich." They use simple addition to determine the size of the class quilt.

Download (232 kb)

Wearable Yo-Yos
Yo-Yo Quilt Activity (grades 3-8)

Students learn how to make a simple yo-yo piece used in yo-yo quilts and create a variety of uses for the versatile pattern.

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