Anyway, the books starts with slavery/the antebellum period, when women created "show ways" or quilts that "showed the way" North to freedom. As a historian, I have to admit that this account of history is debatable, but the most basic part of it is important: this woman's ancestors learned to sew for a purpose. My Sister's Ten Quilt II had several similar blocks to the quilt blocks in the book: flying geese, North Star, Crossroads. The kids were astounded that I had them on my quilt!
They ask all kinds of questions: "How long does it take to make?" (this one I calculated at over 50 hours), "How much could you buy it for?" (probably about $1,000, but I'll never sell it, so it's priceless), and my favorite: "So, you do this in your free time?!" Hahaha. They oohed and ahhed at the back of the quilt ("I love the rose!" "I love the butterfly!"). The teacher and I drew some interesting parallels between my sewing and the book: I can go to the fabric store, while those woman could not; I sew with a machine; they sewed by hand.
Kids' excitement is infectious. They were astounded when I told them I made a matching one in different colors for my sister. :D Some said they wanted to learn how to sew! I can't wait to work with students all over my district tomorrow as we make a quilt for one of our 7th graders, who is battling leukemia. I'll be sure to take pictures and share. Time to finish packing up all my stuff!