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Kwanzaa Woven Mat

The woven mat, or mkeka (em-KAY-kah), is the mat on which the other Kwanzaa symbols rest. The mkeka is a symbol of tradition and history.
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  • Black, red, and green construction paper
  • Child’s blunt-tip safety scissor
  • Glue or stapler


  • Fold the black paper in half so the short edges meet. This will make a frame for the mat.
  • Show your child how to cut from the folded edge to within 1 inch of the opposite side
  • Have him make seven cuts about 1-inch apart to make eight 1-inch sections.
  • Unfold the paper. 
  • Cut 1-inch-wide strips from the red and green paper, cutting from long edge to long edge of each sheet
  • Show your child how to weave the strips over and under the cuts in the frame, alternating red and green strips.
  • Glue or staple the strips in place along the edge of the frame. Trim the strips if necessary.


Adult participation needed if using stapler.
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