Folk Arts in Education



image of Wisconsin Folks home page  

Wisconsin Folks is an award-winning website written for upper elementary students. Its rich interactive content features Wisconsin folk artists, their work and related cultural traditions. Teacher resources link the content to Wisconsin academic standards and offer extension materials. Hiring information on more than 70 individuals artists and performing groups allows schools and agencies to directly co ntact these artists for programs. The artists include musicians, dancers, visual artists, cooks and regional specialists.

image from Wisconsin Weather Stories home page  

Wisconsin Weather Stories website provides K-12 units on the science and stories of Wisconsin weather. This interdisciplinary curriculum was produced through a partnership between WAB, UW-Madison atmospheric scientists and folklorists, and five classroom teachers from across the state. 

stick drawing of two people dancing  

The Kids' Guide to Local Culture (PDF 2.5M) provides elementary students with kid-friendly strategies for investigating the cultural content of their own communities. It opens by exploring basic cultural concepts such as how to observe culture and understanding the relation between history and living culture. Then it goes through tools and techniques kids can use. The bulk of the guide explores different cultural elements such as power, aesthetics, beliefs, and occupations. It closes with ideas on how to present their findings. This resource was co-produced by WAB, the Madison Children's Museum, the Center for the Study of Upper Midwestern Cultures, and Mark Wagler of Randall School in Madison.

stick drawing of two people shaking hands  

The Teachers' Guide to Local Culture (PDF 660K) is the companion to the Kids’ Guide. After a detailed introduction that covers topics from pedagogy to practical matters, the Guide gives several lesson plans on such topics as home remedies, rites of passage, storytelling and foodways. This resource was written by Mark Wagler & published by the Madison Children’s Museum.

graphic element from the field guide to Hmong culture document  

Field Guide to Hmong Culture (PDF 3.3M) is a comprehensive resource written by Dia Cha, Mai Zong Vue and Steve Carmen, and produced by the Madison Children's Museum. 

graphic of school bus  

The Folk Arts Educator is a newsletter that WAB published bi-annually from 1999-2002. These issues contain useful resources on:



graphic of school bus  

WAB partnered with the Center for the Study of Upper Midwestern Cultures (CSUMC) and Randall Elementary School in 2001-02 to develop a four-day cultural tour for Mark Wagler's 4th/5th grade class. The resultant website provides student essays and photos, along with practical advice on "How We Did It." Click on the school bus to view the Dane County cultural tour!

image of Wisconsin and Hmong people  

In 2002-03, the three partners from the Dane County Cultural Tour joined with the Madison Children's Museum to study Hmong culture in Wisconsin, in preparation for MCM's touring exhibit, "Hmong at Heart." Click on the image to view the Hmong cultural tour.

image of Park street in Madison Wisconsin  

In 2003-2004, Mark Wagler's 4th/5th grade class at Randall School studied a street in south Madison, the main thoroughfare near Randall School. Click the image to see the result.