Monday, February 13, 2012

Scythian History Co-op. Week 3: Houses

Week 3: We made Yurts.

Yurts are tent-like houses which are constructed by covering wooden lattice framing with felted wool. Sometimes the wool was coated in animal fat to make it more waterproof. People of the Stepppes of Asia have lived in yurts for thousands of years and still live in them today.

Our yurts were created with clothes pins, felt, card stock paper, yarn and some glitter glue for decoration.

 
First, clothes pins were glued to a circular piece of felt to create the roof.

 
The circular shaped cover for the smoke hole was sometimes made out of wood and passed down within a family. It was often decorated with a family symbol.

Felt was glued to card stock for the body of the house. A door was cut into the home and it was decorated.

 
Since the Scythians were nomads, their houses could be broken down and transported. Therefore, the Yurts and roofs were tied into their cylindrical and cone shapes with string.

After the houses were constructed the kids wet felted wool to make rugs for the homes. This was done by agitating wool in a pan of soapy water. Thin pieces of fiber were agitated and then additional layers were added as the fibers began to stick together. The process was complete when the rugs grew large enough to fit inside the houses.

Interestingly enough Yurts (sometimes called Gers) are still used today. Here is a time-lapsed video of a modern day Yurt being erected.

The finished yurts can be used for cute doll houses. Maybe Barbie would like a new Yurt?

Here are links to some hands-on history activities for kids.
Celts
Vikings
Scythians
Ancient China





learning ALL the time!! NightOwlCrafting For the Kids Friday

7 comments:

  1. Wow! What a neat activity! I just love fun, hands-on learning for kids! Coming to visit from Red Oak Lane. Hope you have a great rest of your week. :-)

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  2. These are a very cool project! I have heard of modern day yurts before, but I didn't realize their history. Thank you for sharing with Look What We Did :)

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  3. This is great! Thank you for linking up with look What We Did!

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  4. I love hands-on history and culture projects. The yurts turned out great!

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  5. What a great project!! Thanks so much for linking up to Tot School Tuesday!

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  6. I love your yurts Julie. If I had actually planned our Mongol unit I may have done the same, but ours was rather thrown together!

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