Five Clawed Dragon:
Chinese textile, Five-Clawed Dragon
Ming Dynasty, 1368–1644; embroidery on silk; 12.25 in. x 11.75 in.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY, USA
In this lesson, students will:
- Analyze the Five-Clawed Dragon and learn how textiles can be an art form
- Discuss the importance of dragons in Chinese art and how they were used to symbolize the power of the emperor
- Identify and describe the use of elements of art, including shape, form, line, and texture, in this textile
- Design circular compositions using symmetry and balance
- Color dragons with oil pastels, using tints, shades, and intensity to show form
- Create oil pastel and watercolor dragons in a circular format
Lesson Teaching Notes
A document of summary pages on the lesson’s Key Concepts, Vocabulary, Discussion Questions, Artist Points, and Project Directions.
Map and Location
Common Core Standards
Speaking & Listening
Comprehension and Collaboration:
Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grade 6 topics, texts, and issues, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly.
Come to discussions prepared, having read or studied required material; explicitly draw on that preparation by referring to evidence on the topic, text, or issue to probe and reflect on ideas under discussion.
Follow rules for collegial discussions, set specific goals and deadlines, and define individual roles as needed.
Pose and respond to specific questions with elaboration and detail by making comments that contribute to the topic, text, or issue under discussion.
Review the key ideas expressed and demonstrate understanding of multiple perspectives through reflection and paraphrasing.
Interpret information presented in diverse media and formats (e.g., visually, quantitatively, orally) and explain how it contributes to a topic, text, or issue under study.
Delineate a speaker’s argument and specific claims, distinguishing claims that are supported by reasons and evidence from claims that are not.
Key Ideas and Details:
Determine a theme or central idea of a text and how it is conveyed through particular details; provide a summary of the text distinct from personal opinions or judgments.
Describe how a particular story’s or drama’s plot unfolds in a series of episodes as well as how the characters respond or change as the plot moves toward a resolution.
Craft and Structure:
Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of a specific word choice on meaning and tone.
Integration of Knowledge and Ideas:
Compare and contrast the experience of reading a story, drama, or poem to listening to or viewing an audio, video, or live version of the text, including contrasting what they “see” and “hear” when reading the text to what they perceive when they listen or watch.
Compare and contrast texts in different forms or genres (e.g., stories and poems; historical novels and fantasy stories) in terms of their approaches to similar themes and topics.
Integration of Knowledge and Ideas:
Integrate information presented in different media or formats (e.g., visually, quantitatively) as well as in words to develop a coherent understanding of a topic or issue.
Text Types and Purposes:
Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, relevant descriptive details, and well-structured event sequences.
Research to Build and Present Knowledge:
Draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.
Vocabulary Acquisition and Use:
Demonstrate understanding of figurative language, word relationships, and nuances in word meanings.
Interpret figures of speech (e.g., personification) in context.
Use the relationship between particular words (e.g., cause/effect, part/whole, item/category) to better understand each of the words.
Distinguish among the connotations (associations) of words with similar denotations (definitions) (e.g., stingy, scrimping, economical, unwasteful, thrifty).
Acquire and use accurately grade-appropriate general academic and domain-specific words and phrases; gather vocabulary knowledge when considering a word or phrase important to comprehension or expression.
Apply and extend previous understandings of multiplication and division to divide fractions by fractions.
Interpret and compute quotients of fractions, and solve word problems involving division of fractions by fractions, e.g., by using visual fraction models and equations to represent the problem. For example, create a story context for (2/3) ÷ (3/4) and use a visual fraction model to show the quotient; use the relationship between multiplication and division to explain that (2/3) ÷ (3/4) = 8/9 because 3/4 of 8/9 is 2/3. (In general, (a/b) ÷ (c/d) = ad/bc.) How much chocolate will each person get if 3 people share 1/2 lb of chocolate equally? How many 3/4-cup servings are in 2/3 of a cup of yogurt? How wide is a rectangular strip of land with length 3/4 mi and area 1/2 square mi?.
- Find the different ways the dragons’ bodies fit the circular format.
- Look for repeated details that symbolize scales, horns, teeth, and claws.
- Look for symmetry in the dragons and asymmetry in the circular designs.
- Find tints and shades that give form to the dragon shapes.
- Look for visual metaphors that express the traditions and myths of Chinese culture.
- Identify compositions that use the pearl of wisdom to balance the dragon.
- Identify lines that show movement.
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