For the final art project in the unit I will ask students to create their own "Life Maps." I envision a life map as a sort of map of the places that have created the personalities that we are. I suggest that teachers make their own "Life Maps" before getting to this part of the project.
Start by listing all the important places that have shaped your personality throughout the years. Of course the older you are the more complicated your map will be. Think of places, important towns or cities, countries that have shaped your personality. List them. Think of actual physical places; homes, churches, schools, jobs. List them. Now get ready to create your life map.
Your life map can be a simple drawing map or can be more of a 3-D project. It is up to you. But I think the "Life Map" should work chronologically, almost like a time line. The earlier influences should be on one side of the map while the most recent ones will be on the right side. Allow your students to create the maps any way they want. It might be drawn; they might use their own photos or create a collage with images cut out from magazines. Give the students all the creative license that you can.
In order to make students utilize what you have been talking about as a class, require them to include four places in their own lives that relate to the four themes we discussed. Have them include a natural setting, an uncomfortable public place, a place out of place and a city or town neighborhood that influenced them.
This map should be a work of art. The places and settings should be drawn not simply designated. Although your birthplace is not really right next to your nursery school, on your life map they may well be. The map should be colorful and interesting. You can even allow students to fill some of the empty spaces on their map with important places from the unit. Be creative. Use the scoring rubric in the appendix for scoring the project.
Where you take the "Life Map" from here is up to you. It would be a great place to start an autobiography. You could have students extract stories from the map and allow them to write them or tell them to the class. Hang up the maps in the room and have students do critical commentary on other maps. Students could write essays, one act plays, or articles on the maps. The maps can become a great teaching resource. Keep them around!