Chapter 1:
How to use the Guide for Educators


How to use the Guide for Educators

At this Web site we offer an online version of the "Guide for Educators" published by the Freer Gallery of Art and the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery. You can also order a complete packet for educators which includes three full color posters, a 40 page printed lesson guide with activities, and a VHS copy of the video which is featured in the exhibit.

This unit may serve as a teaching unit by itself or as part of preparation for a visit to the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery to see the exhibition Puja: Expressions of Hindu Devotion. The materials may be used by a single teacher or in collaboration with teachers of different disciplines. Focusing on Hindu religious objects found in an art museum, the unit suggests connections between art and world studies themes. In addition, these highly symbolic objects provide much material for discussion of the creation of images, whether in two or three dimensions, in speech, or in music. In this way, study of the objects provides a springboard for creativity in art, language arts, and music.

Contents of the complete packet for Educators

In addition to the written materials, this packet contains a video and three posters of Hindu deities. Suggestions for how to use these materials are listed in the section entitled "Activities for Students."


There are three video segments on one tape. The first segment, which is narrated, is repeated in an open-captioned version. It provides an introduction to the concept of puja, giving a useful overview of the practice of puja and how objects are used in puja ceremonies. The second is a short segment that shows a woman worshiping at her household shrine in India. It offers a more detailed look at the practice of puja in a Hindu home. The third segment focuses on people worshiping at an outdoor shrine to the goddess Chandi in Puri District in Orissa. It shows puja as it is practiced in a rural, outdoor shrine in India. All of the segments run continuously in the exhibition.

Posters of Hindu Deities

There are three posters of Hindu deities included with this unit. They depict:

  • the god Shiva, his wife, Parvati, and their son Ganesha.
  • the god Vishnu and his wife, Lakshmi.
  • the goddess Durga.

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