Quilt Journeys 2009 – 2010

Iditarod Traveling Quilts are on the Trail

From the 2009 Website: 10/20/2009 — 4 Quilts Journey the USA

Betaquilt-2This year, four Iditarod themed quilts will be traveling to schools around the nation.  Each month, you’ll be able to read where each quilt has been and learn about the schools and communities that are associated with this project.  The quilts will each visit 9 or 10 different schools during the year.

While the quilt is at a school, students are involves in teacher created lessons that help teach and reinforce the content standards that students must learn.  The lessons focus on science, math, language arts, or other areas.  A scrapbook travels with each quilt, recording memories and lessons of each visit.  This scrapbook becomes a traveling teaching tool, too.

The Iditarod Traveling Quilt project is a unique way to help teachers not just ‘cover’ the curriculum, but ‘uncover’ the curriculum in a thematic approach to teaching and learning.

Quilt 1 started this year’s journey by going to North Dakota.  In a few days, this quilt will cross the border into South Dakota.  While in North Dakota with the teacher and second grade students, it is speculated that Quilt 1 will meet an Iditarod musher.  Join us each month to read about Quilt 1’s journey from the Dakotas to Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, Maine, Maryland, and North Carolina before joining teachers at the 2010 Summer Camp in June.  Quilt 1 was ‘born’ at Iditarod’s Summer Camp for Teachers and will be a featured display at the summer camp and Iditarod’s Volunteer Picnic and 2011 Musher Sign Up.

Quilt 1 was the first Iditarod Traveling Quilt, sewn together by 2006 Teacher on the Trail™ Terrie Hanke.

DSC00388Quilt 2 began the school year by flying off to Wisconsin.  Quilt 2 was created by teachers who attended the 2006 summer conference but was sewn together in Wisconsin.  Mrs. Helmke welcomed Quilt 2 ‘home again’ at her school in Wisconsin, the starting place for the 2007 Quilt 2 tour.   Mrs. Helmke had this to say,

“HURRAY!!! Quilt #2 has returned home! This is Carol Helmke from Lancaster, Wisconsin, and I am the creator of quilt #2. I am so excited to have quilt #2 home with me for a month!! It has been two years since I have seen the quilt, and it has seen many places and been touched by many hands and hearts:) It brings back many fond memories of my week at the Iditarod Educators’ Conference in June of 2006. All of us had such a good time. I encourage anyone who has not attended to do so. The quilt is such a wonderful memory of that and all that the Iditarod stands for in inspiration and teamwork. The quilt and the accompanying scrapbook is a wonderful way for my class and I to begin this new year. I wish everyone a great school year.”

In the photo, 2002 Teacher on the Trail™ Kim Harrick welcomed the quilt to her school and used it as a visual for classroom presentations and lessons.

When Quilt 2 leaves Wisconsin, it will visit Texas, South Carolina, Utah, New York, and back to Wisconsin.

LauraBellafromJillCaldwellQuilt 3 headed first to California to visit students at Mrs. Prather’s school where the following was reported:

“Quilt #3 stole the show at “Back to School Night”. It is currently on display in our library. It was introduced to all our 4th grade students yesterday at an assembly where we all watched the Iditarod DVD. Most of those 4th grade students brought their parents into the library to see the quilt. Some students translated, from English to Spanish, so their parents could also learn about the project. We are brainstorming how we want our square to look. We will follow this with making a quilt of our own, which we will send out to all the other 4th grade classes in our District. A list of Iditarod activities has been posted in each 4th grade classroom. Students are invited to choose which one they want to work on. This just keeps getting better and better!

In this picture, Iditarod Musher Laura Daugereau visited a school to give an assembly for students.  She is holding one of her dogs in the photo.  If you are interested in having Laura visit your school, contact her.

Quilt 3 will also visit schools in Washington, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Massachusetts, back to California, and on to Mississippi before ending the year’s journey.

Quilt 4 is ‘under construction’ but will begin a journey in October.  Where will it be headed?  Stay tuned, you’ll soon find that out!

quiltdianenyeOnce October rolls around, you’ll be able to read more about all 4 Iditarod Traveling Quilts.  Each month, you’ll be able to follow the progress of each journey and the incredible learning activities that students are involved in while the quilt is in their community.

This picture features one square of the quilt, created by 2001 Teacher on the Trail, Diane Nye, Colorado.

You can also follow the progress of our Virtual QuiltSend us a digital image of a quilt square from your class and join the project connecting schools around the world in a real time sharing adventure.

quiltatschoolRead about the Iditarod Traveling Quilt project.  Discover the educational value and earn how to get involved in this project in the future. This project is known for the high impact it has on the students as they study the messages and inspirations found on the squares of each quilt.  The project is engaging and fun, but more than that, it is educationally sound because of the educational value each teacher places on the project.

Send an email if you have comments, questions, or wish to be selected to be a part of next year’s project.

Create your own classroom quilt as a theme to what you study in your Iditarod unit or to demonstrate math, science, or other areas of your curriculum.  Send us pictures of your quilt and tell us about your project.  Share the project and the success that comes from your project.

Discover information about the 2008 Common Thread Quilt project, created by 2008 Target® Iditarod Teacher on the Trail™ Jane Blaile. Are you interested in creating and sending a quilt to another school?  We’d like to hear your thoughts!  Email.

Enjoy this year’s adventures of the Iditarod Traveling Quilts: One, Two, Three, and now…..   Four!

Adventures of the Traveling Quilts: October 2009

What have the Quilts been up to during October?

Posted 11/05/ 2009

Four Iditarod Traveling Quilts are on a special educational journey from school to school around the nation.  Each month, read about each quilt.  Get a glim pse of the lessons and activities that schools are involved in while hosting an Iditarod Quilt in their community.  This article will summarize Quilts 1, 2, and 3.   Read about Quilt 4 at this link.

Quilt 1 traveled to Watertown, South Dakota to visit the Kindergarten classroom of Denise Hoff.

quilt squaresA special package arrived in the classroom.  The students were excited to ‘meet’ the Iditarod Traveling Quilt that had traveled from one Dakota to the next.  As the teacher displayed the quilt, the discussion and Iditarod energy began in the kindergarten classroom. The students talked about each of  the squares.  They chose their favorite square and thought about reasons for choosing favorite squares.  The students also talked about dogs.  The students also looked at an enlarged map of Alaska.  The Iditarod Trail was outlined so all of the students could see the  race route of more than 1000 miles!  Smaller individual maps were made for the students.

bradanddogatschoolNear the end of the month, two kindergarten classes and two second grade classes gathered  to meet special guests.  Mr. Brad VanMeter’ came to their school because Brad has visited Alaska and been at the start of the Iditarod  many times.   He has even helped get teams to the starting  line!  Dean Johnson was with Brad for the presentation as was Brad’s Alaskan sled dog, Desert.  Brad shared information about the race, the dogs, and about his friend, Iditarod Musher Vern Halter.

The students have read books about Akaika, Togo, and Swifty.  The movie, Balto was a thriller for the students to watch!

Iditarod quiltThe students designed their own quilt square and submitted it to be a part of a future Iditarod Traveling quilt.

Later this year, the students will be making sleds from Popsicle sticks.   The students have plans to invite an Iditarod musher to visit the school, too.

When the race begins, Denise and the school administration will direct a school wide Iditarod Watch.

After visiting the school, Quilt 1 departed for Indiana.

Quilt 2

quilt2The quilt spent October in El Paso, Texas, with the Bradley Generals. Students from 3rd, 4th and 5th grade Gifted and Talented classes read 2 versions of the Libby Riddles book, “Storm Run” and compared how the same story was told for 2 different audiences. Students read and studied musher biographies from the Iditarod website. They will use these to write their own mini-biographies for a special unit on Iditarod. They each picked a musher to follow during the race, making sleds to move along an Iditarod Trail down the hallway. Students also dressed up in Nome wear that their teacher uses when working at the finish line. El Paso NEVER gets cold enough to wear these clothes! We can’t wait for the race to begin.

Quilt 3

Quilt arrived in Washington at Grand Mound Elementary.   The students enjoyed meeting quilt and discussing the messages that were found on each square of the quilt.  During the quilt’s stay at the school, the teacher cleverly integrated the themes found on each square of the quilt into the content learning for the students.

Interested in learning more about the Iditarod Traveling Quilt project?  Read this article and follow the links.

/ For Teachers / Adventure of the Traveling Quilts: November

Adventure of the Traveling Quilts: November

Posted 12/19/2009

The Iditarod Traveling Quilts are each on a journey around the United States.  Where were the quilts in November?

Quilt 1: Indiana

Teacher has not turned in her homework yet!  Stay tuned, this will be updated soon!

Quilt 2: Texas

We are having a wonderful time with the quilt, and have revamped our schedule to accommodate it.  As I write, some students are watching the terrific video you sent, while others are doing the “scavenger hunt” in partners.  I read Togo to them today, and our librarian has provided us with a wonderful selection of books by Gary Paulsen and others.  We had our picture taken for the paper today.  (Nov.19)

Mrs. Bratteli

Quilt 3: Washington

( Note to Diane: Add images)


Quilt 3 Visits Naches Valley Intermediate School

Students in Mrs. Black’s 4th grade class received a surprise in the mail one day early in November. The students played 20 questions about the parcel until they couldn’t guess anymore! Mrs. Black pulled out an Iditarod quilt! The class studied the messages and pictures
guided by quilt questions that Mrs. Black provided. Inspired by what they read, they posted comments on our blog and eagerly await further Iditarod activities in the coming school year! To see our comments,  please go to: http://tinyurl.com/yc7tp5t

The students plan to work on their own quilt classroom project—   “IditaRead Traveling Quilt”: http://bit.ly/5dBxz3.  Follow the link to learn how you can help or start your own project.

Quilt 4:  Illinois

Quilt spent time with the current 8th graders who had created the quilt square last year when they were in 7th grade. The students were delighted and excited to see the completed quilt containing their

designed quilt square. They enjoyed looking at the other quilt squares to see where they were from and discuss all the different designs. Quilt just “hung” in the classroom watching the students, who enjoyed having quilt in their presence.

This is such a great activity. I am excited you have so many traveling around. Thanks again for letting us be part of this project.

Debbie Wholey

Adventures of the Traveling Quilt: December

Website article- January 3, 2010

Four Iditarod Traveling Quilts are on a journey around the United States.  Read about the December journey of each quilt!

Quilt 1: Indiana

quilt2Cannelton Elementary students in Cannelton, Indiana were thrilled to receive the traveling Iditarod Quilt!  As soon as it arrived the 5th graders got it out. Each quilt piece is amazing. There is something to learn from each one. Such great quotes like ”Adversity reveals the true content of a person’s character.”  The artwork and the words are all inspirational.  They motivated us to learn more about the Iditarod.

Each quilt piece was inspirational and we learned a lot about the race from them.

We liked the quilt so much we decided to design a new quilt piece for a new quilt. (We will finish it as soon as we can after we get back from Christmas vacation.)

We enjoyed learning about the Iditarod by watching the video about Iditarod 2008. We also liked doing the scavenger hunt.

The Traveling Quilt was on display in the main hallway upstairs for all classes to see.

idit17Our 5th grade class is helping the dogs of the Iditarod this year. We signed up to be a part of two bootie making groups. We are making 100 booties for Paw Partners and 100 booties for Bootie Brigade. Our booties will be used in the next Iditarod, Iditarod 2010! :-) They will be given to Michelle Phillips (rookie) and Hugh Neff (veteran).

Our school made booties for the Bootie Brigade last year also. We made booties for the dogs of Ramey Smyth last year.

Our teacher is signing up for Iditarod Insider, and we will watch the mushers and their progress. We look forward to the race because we know it will be a race to remember!

The quilt inspired us to make a new quilt piece for a future quilt. Thank you all so much for sharing this quilt with us! It is beautiful!

Joan Goble

Cannelton Elementary

Watch a slide show about the bootie making.  Images will advance automatically.


Quilt 2: South Carolina

The 6th graders at Blue Ridge Middle were very excited to see the quilt on December 1.  It kicked off our 3 week Iditaread Challenge, an annual reading contest that challenges the students to read a page for each  mile of the Iditarod.  Our contest usually takes place right before the Iditarod but we moved it forward due to the quilt’s visit.  6th grade has a chart up in the hall and small dogsleds and mushers to move along the trail as they read.  The teachers are always amazed at how many students will make it over the finish line after a few days.  Each team had a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winner for prizes but all of the students who made it had a celebration. We watch an Iditarod movie and have Ice-cream as a reward.  The quilt was displayed in our library for the 3 weeks except for trips to several classrooms and a kindergarten class in a neighboring school.  Ms. Johnson visits the classes to tell about living in Alaska for 3 years.  We scheduled an open house night so parents could see the quilt and an Iditarod display.

In our classes, we read The Iditarod and checked the temperature in Alaska.  We read about the mushers and completed a webquest.   We have several additional activities scheduled for March and April.  We hope everyone else enjoys the quilt as much as we did.

Quilt 3: Washington

Students wrote about their favorite quilt squares.Students wrote about their favorite quilt squares.

Thank you for sending us the quilt.  We totally enjoyed exploring all of the pieces and even adding one of our own.  We spent time writing about our 3 favorite squares and drawing pictures to go with it.  In March our school will have our own Daybreak Iditarod.  Each participating classroom will draw a musher to cheer and follow throughout the race.  Our first graders will start our own quilt with card stock paper squares to inspire the other classes and grade levels to design their own and share with others.

Thanks again for letting us be a part of the Iditarod Traveling Quilt.  Looking forward to March.

Mush On!

Paula Young

Quilt 4: Michigan

Teacher has not turned in her ‘homework’ yet.  Check back for an update.


Adventures of the Traveling Quilts: January

Quilt 1

scrapbookThe 3rd graders at New Baden Elementary have been preparing for the quilt to arrive.  In December we read the book Iditarod by Monica Devine. We discussed a lot of terminology that went along with the book and the race.  We also read the book Balto and the Great Race by Elizabeth Kimmel based on a  true story about a dog that helped deliver an antitoxin serum  in 1925 to help save children from diphtheria.   We also read about the rules on the Iditarod.com website.  The students are also researching and reading about the 2010 mushers.  The students will pick a musher to follow daily and will be checking his or her progress.  When the quilt arrived the students did several activities.  The quilt was hung by the office for all the students (grades pre-K-4) to see.  The first thing we did was calculate the miles traveled by the quilt and learned about the locations the quilt traveled.  We also shared the quilt with a neighboring school in Bartelso, IL. The students were also put into groups and created quilt squares.  We then voted on the favorite one and it was designed onto the square. We really enjoyed the quilt.

View the student’s scrapbook page.  (PDF Document)

Quilt 2

Iditarod 2010 Quilt  magQuilt 2 traveled to Price, UT.

Mrs Kokal’s Life Management students are constructing a Iditarod quilt to remember the experience at CHS. They have chosen the fabric that they are going to use. Then they found pictures they could use with Dritz Printed Treasures Inkjet Printable Fabric Sew on picture sheets.

They will now put the quilt together during extra class time. You can see some of the pictures they have chosen are huskies, dog racing, Alaskan skies, and the map of the Iditarod. After watching the DVD of the 2008 race we can’t wait to watch Iditarod 2010.

We enjoyed the quilt.  We still have a few more activities planned until the Iditarod starts but the quilt started the events.  Thanks for including us.  I think we will ask for the quilt again next year.


View more information about Quilt’s visit to Utah by clicking here!

Quilt 3

Quilt arrived in PA on January 19, almost a month late.  We’ll be adjusting the schedule slightly since the quilt arrived about the time it should be sent to the next school.  Sorry about the delay.  Check back again for an update.

Quilt 4

The Iditarod Quilt arrived in Grand Blanc, MI at Mason Elementary on January 7, 2010. It has been put in a showcase in our main hall with various other Iditarod articles and artifacts. Having the quilt is a great way to get the students interested in the upcoming race and preparing them for the activites that we will be doing. Teachers bring the students to the showcase and discuss the quotes and drawings and then begin to familarize the students with the Iditarod by using the various websites that are available.
We had a great time writing stories and making predictions for the race.
Jan Cornelison

Iditarod Traveling Quilt: February Update

2/26/2010 Website Article

Quilt 1

In Wisconsin!

Iditarod Traveling Quilt

My class did the quilt scavenger hunt, and spent last week studying the Iditarod by reading The Iditarod: Story of the Last Great Race.

They learned so much about the race, the great state of Alaska, and the exciting people and their stories that experience the race. Many of them made the popsicle stick sleds after.

Next month we will begin the Iditaread challenge for the whole month. Students will earn Iditarod book marks and pencils and then we will watch “Iron Will”.

The speaker in front of the projection screen is Dr. Ron Cortte, 4-time Iditarod racer, and the lone musher standing with the dog is Tim Calhoun. He has raced the Yukon and other bigger races, and hopes to do the Iditarod in the future. He is not racing this year, but is raising 2 litters of husky pups. His female dog is a breeder, former Iditarod racer, that he bought from someone up there.



Click each image for a larger view!

Quilt 2

students and quiltQuilt 2:  Utah to New York City!

Saint Ignatius Loyola School received the Traveling Iditarod Quilt in New York City just a few weeks ago from Utah. In anticipation of the Iditarod quilt and Catholic Schools Week, we celebrated by creating our own school quilt (photo below).

The Iditarod has given us a unique way to integrate our computer curriculum with social studies, math and reading. Our K-8 students are looking forward to tracking the musher’s Quilt 002journey using Microsoft Powerpoint and Excel. In addition to using the Iditarod website, we will be reading various books to learn more about this exciting event.

Thank you for allowing our school to partake in this program. We enjoyed viewing the volunteer photos included in our package and appreciate all the lessons and resources available.


Quilt 3

Quilt’s update is a work sample from the students as part of their writing assignment.

Adventures of Iditarod Traveling Quilt 3:  Goodnoe Elementary School, Newtown PA  (as told by Quilt #3)

P2020022I arrived at Goodnoe Elementary School in Newtown, PA, on a January afternoon. I was a little late getting there, so I was hoping to get opened right away. I had a lot of work to do and not much time to get it done. At first I was passed around in a circle. I was starting to get dizzy! Then, the box opened, and I was finally out of that box once again! Everyone was excited to see me. They thought I was awesome. I was not surprised to see Mrs. Molishus’ second graders waiting to learn about me because I knew they were next on my list of classrooms to visit.

The first thing that happened was the class put me in the middle of their circle so they could get a good look at me. The children touched me, and they thought I was soft and warm. One girl said, “My favorite square is the one in the middle.” Another student said, “I like the quilt because it has so many interesting squares.”

I got to hear some great quilt stories. One story was called Luka’s Quilt. It was about a family from Hawaii and their quilt traditions. Another story was called The Keeping Quilt, which was about a quilt that was passed down from generation to generation in a family. I love hearing about how special quilts can be to people. It makes me feel so important!

P2010003The children had so much fun learning about me and about the quilts in the books that they decided to make their own quilt squares. The squares had pictures of important family memories on them. Then, the class tied all the squares together with some fancy ribbon. I love my beautiful new quilt friend!

I had some little adventures while I was visiting Mrs. Molishus’ class. I got to be a part of some Iditarod presentations all the way up in the fourth grade where they had just finished reading Balto (one of my favorite books)! Some second graders carried me, some dog booties, some books, some notes, and some cameras to the classrooms to share what they were learning about the Iditarod. We might have gotten a little lost on the way, but we eventually got there, and the presentations were wonderful! I even got to go to the library and meet Goodnoe’s amazing librarian. And, I got to be in tons of photos and in a video! I felt like a movie star!! If you go to http://www.crsd.org/molishus and click on the Iditarod link, you can see some of the photos posted there, and you will also see what Mrs. Molishus’ class is doing to learn about the Iditarod.

quiltbookLater on I watched as the class put together two new pages in my fabulous Iditarod Traveling Quilt #3 Scrapbook. I can’t wait to show everyone my scrapbook at the end of my 2009-2010 tour. What a great story a scrapbook can tell—just like a quilt!

Finally, it was time to say goodbye to all my new Goodnoe friends. Luckily, Goodnoe’s principal just came back from a maternity leave, so I got to meet her before I was packed away safely in my cozy box. In my box is a new quilt square that perhaps can be used to make another Iditarod Traveling Quilt. That way, more schools can have as much fun as Goodnoe spending time learning about the Iditarod and about the wonderful world of quilts!

I headed to Connecticut and couldn’t wait to meet my next group of amazing teachers and students. I am sure I will have more wonderful stories to tell!

Quilt 4

Quilt 4 is has recently arrived in Florida and is currently visiting 2010 Target ® Iditarod Teacher on the Trail™ finalist., Linda Kal Sander.   Quilt will be visiting schools and helping to inspire projects.  Watch the website and this article for updated information!

To read the updated journey of Quilt 4, click here.

Iditarod Traveling Quilt: March Update

3/30/2010 Website Article

Quilt 1

Quilt 1 went to Maine.  We are waiting for the teacher to send her summary of Quilt 1’s visit.  Once it arrives, we’ll update this article.  Please check back soon.

Quilt 2

I arrived in Rochester, NY at the beginning of March at The Children’s School @ URMC. The Pre-K Shark room of four year olds had requested my visit. The teachers were very excited when they opened my box and saw me in it. During circle time the teachers took me out and explained to the kids about the Iditarod and me, then they watched the DVD I arrived with. I was laid on a table for kids to come and look at me up close. Then I was hung up in the lobby so everyone could see me. Many parents and children came up and looked at me and asked questions.

Over the next few weeks the children read books about the Iditarod and Alaska, they pretended to be sled dogs and learned mush commands, and made a sled, sled dogs, and Buzz Lightyear was the musher. I thought that was very cool.  The children also helped their teachers create scrapbook pages of my time at their school. Before I was packed up and onto my next adventure the children told their teachers what they liked best about having me visit. The kids said they liked the video, playing the quiz game that was sent with me, and making their sled dogs.

The teachers and children were sad to see me go, but they know it is time for me to move on to another school.  They hope the Indian Community School in Wisconsin will enjoy my visit as much as they did. We would like to say thank you for letting us participate and we are excited to have another quilt visit next year!

Thanks for following my journey this year!

Sincerely yours,

Quilt 2

Quilt 3

Quilt 3 was sent from Connecticut  to Massachusetts.  We are waiting for the teachers to send the reports.  As soon as it arrives, this article will be updated.

Check back soon!

Quilt 4

(Florida with Linda M)

March 23 email:

Hi. The quilt will be mailed from Florida to Colorado tomorrow. We have enjoyed it immensely!!

My class just loved the “mittens” with the duck tape handle for “do not let go”. I used that quilt block to tell the story of the musher who “lost” his sled and had to walk for an hour and a half to find his dogs!!

The local newspaper sent a reporter and photographer to do an article on my attending teacher summer camp and my expectations, what the kids learned about the Iditarod, and how much they were inspired by the quilt! The kids will be writing letters to Jeff King as I had his signed poster in the classroom and they were amazed at his frozen moustach and also they loved his last name of King!!

Diane, thanks so much for all you do to make the Iditarod Education a unique source for teachers! I will be sending photos and an article on the Quilt in Naples!

Laurie- the quilt was “lost” for 20 days and was very late getting to Pompano Beach, hence the late arrival to you.

Take care and best wishes!


Follow the link to a wonderful news story on Quilt in Florida.

Follow this link for images and a news story.

Quilt 4 Arrives in Colorado!

After a quick flight from Florida, Quilt arrived at the Friend’s School and enjoyed a wonderful stay.  Teacher Laurie Nakauchi-Hawn said,

“My class really enjoyed having the quilt! In January we had an amazing Iditarod-filled month. My students studied dogs and mushing and had a ball pretending to be sled dogs in the snow.”

View the PDF newsletter from Laurie and her students.

7/23/2010 Website Article

Iditarod Traveling Quilt: April Update

Iditarod Travel Quilt: April Update

Quilt 1:

“Quilt has arrived!” I called to teachers as I carried the box down the school hallway at the end of that March day. “Come and look!” And so began our Quilt adventures at St. Columba, a K-8 school south of Washington, DC.

The 5th grade class has been following the Iditarod race for the last 10 years. So as Quilt took front and center in the library, it was right there for everyone to take a look.  “Hey, look at that signature! He/she was my musher!” And the older students would point to various squares, smiling and sharing comments.

Read more about quilt’s journey to St. Columba.


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