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1311-2 Ghana
Wood Beads

Designed by Candie Cooper

African trade beads really originated in Venice and were used to trade for things such as ivory and palm oil. These beads still exist in Ghana and are prized as a big part of African jewelry.

Age Range: 7 to 12

Grade Range: 1 to 6

Skill Level: Easy

Appropriate for These Special Events:
Every Day and Rainy Days

Supports Subject Area(s) of:
Social Studies
Language Arts – e.g. step by step instructions
Visual Arts

Time Needed for Project:
1 hour plus drying time

Main supplies:

  • Stretch Cord necklaces or bracelets - Silkies™
  • Unfinished wood beads
  • Copper or brass washers

Basic Supplies:

  • Paint brushes or skewers
  • Elmer’s® Gel Glue
  • Elmer’s® Painters® Opaque Paint Markers
  • Ball peen hammer and anvil



1.  Secure beads on a paint brush handle or skewer. Decorate the wood beads with the markers. Let dry. To give the beads a shiny finish add a coat of  gel glue over the decorated beads.

2.  Add texture to the brass washers by placing them on the anvil and hitting them with the round end of the hammer.

3.  String the beads in desired order onto the rubber cord.

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