East Omak Elementary 4th Graders Create Winter Scenes with Felted Wool

December 2017

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Fourth graders at East Omak Elementary School combined fiber arts with their perspectives on winter in a felted wool residency.

Working with teaching artist Annie Venable, students explored the process of wet felting. First, students spent time observing and reflecting on the colors, traditions, and themes of winter. Next, they composed pieces of writing describing their observations. Some wrote poems about making snowmen and going sledding, others described family customs, while still others focused strictly on Santa Claus. Several students described the way the sky looks in Omak in winter–gunmetal grey on cloudy days, a brilliant blue when it’s clear.

“Raise your hand if you’re having SO MUCH FUN!”

~ Omak 4th grade student



Finally, they experimented with color combinations using different dyed felts and created scenes that reflected their winter experiences. When the students had their colored wool placed on the white wool backgrounds, they then learned to felt using soap, hot water, and bubble wrap. They agitated their woolen scenes until the barbs in the wool hooked together and joined the colored wool to the white wool. A rinse and squeeze got the soap and water out, then the pieces were laid flat to dry overnight before being strung onto fruit tree twigs.


“It smells like a wet sheep in here.”

~ Omak 4th grade student

IMG_4876The final display locations of the felted art pieces are top secret right now, but we suspect there will be some delighted Omak parents on Christmas morning.

This art residency was brought to students by Methow Arts’ Okanogan Region Arts Education Partnership.  The partnership serves more than 5,200 students and 370 teachers across Okanogan County with arts programs in classrooms in the Omak, Okanogan, Brewster, Pateros, and Methow School Districts, and in the Paschal Sherman Indian School. Project sponsors include the the Community Foundation of North Central Washington, the Omak School District, Confluence Health, Okanogan-Omak Rotary, Omak Kiwanis, and ArtsWA. THANK YOU!

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CONTACT: info@methowartsalliance.org or 509.997.4004