Saturday, March 20, 2010


Today I tried Ukrainian Easter egg (pysanky) dyeing. The concept seems so simple but the process is not so! Or should I say the process is so simple, but guiding the tool(kiska) is not! I do not have a steady hand and this project requires just that.

When I did some web research, I thought everyone does it and so can I. And I did, and they actually turned out nicer then I expected, though not as intricate as I hoped. The flowery one was easier to do then the star pattern. Getting straight lines on an egg is difficult at best. (Or maybe it is just me)

I was going to do this with my class but am having second thoughts. Using the kiska involves a candle, beeswax, and keeping the tunnel filled with melted wax. I didn't master it, so how can 5-8 year olds do it?

Also, the final step involves using a candle to melt off the accumulated wax and that would have to be done by me. I shy away from projects that require me doing most of the work. Unless I find an easier way of doing it, I will not attempt this with my class.

This egg was scribbled by my 3 year old nephew with me holding the kiska with him. The final product is still stunning, but I can not do this for nine students.

In any case, the picture of the basket of eggs in their natural state is wonderfully beautiful and it seems a shame to actually spoil them.

The following site has, among other great lessons, a step by step tutorial for classroom use.

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