CBSE-2016 Syllabus for Heritage Crafts Classes XI and XII

Aims And Objectives

To impart an all round and holistic education that equips the Indian youth today to face challenges of a global and rapidly changing world, while preserving their own cultural assets, traditions and values this new subject area has been introduced for senior secondary level in schools with the following objectives

  • To understand the critical role of the crafts community and its integral relationship to the Indian society.
  • To enable students to understand the relationship between economics, culture and aesthetics
  • To enable students to explore the linkages between environment, craft traditions and society through field studies
  • To develop a respect for the diversity of Indian craft traditions and to uphold the dignity of its practitioners by understanding the difficulties that they face
  • To introduce Indian culture through the crafts, so that school students appreciate the variety of skills and expressions of the Indian artist
  • To provide students a creative aesthetic experience of the unique visual and material culture of India and develop values of conservation, protection of the environment, resources and heritage of the country
  • To enable students to understand the relationship between tradition and contemporary trends, form and function, creator and consumer.
  • To understand the processes of creating a craft object from start to finish
  • To equip students with the tools to extend craft traditions to wider applications through applied crafts.

Syllabus Class XI (Theory)

3 Hours and 70 Marks Section A: 40 Marks and 50 Periods

Unit 1-Introduction to Craft Traditions-5 Periods 4 Marks

  1. Learning about crafts
  2. History of craft traditions
  3. Crafts and Society

Unit 2-Crafts Materials-15 Periods and 12 Marks


  1. Clay and Pottery
  2. Terracotta
  3. Clay through theAges


  1. Carvings in stone
  2. Sculptures throughAges
  3. Stone work
  4. Stone work and its use in contemporary architecture


Metal work and blacksmith

Lost wax process

Bronze casting

Unit 3-Crafts Processes-20 Periods and 16 Marks


  1. Jewellery for different parts of a body
  2. Regional varieties of jewellery-its process
  3. Jewellery through theAges

Natural Fibres

  1. Types of natural fibres
  2. Uses of natural fibres
  3. Bamboo and Bamboo Crafts processes

Paper crafts

  1. Paper and paper crafts
  2. Paper toys
  3. Papier mace


  1. Textile weaving
  2. Material for textiles
  3. Textiles technique
  4. Embroidery Traditions in India

Unit IV-Composite Crafts-10 Periods and 8 Marks


  1. Painting surfaces, techniques and materials
  2. Mural Tradition through the Ages
  3. Styles of painting in different parts of India

Theatre Crafts

  1. Story telling
  2. Masks
  3. Musical instruments

Section B − 20 Marks and 30pds

Field Studies: Documenting/Exploring Crafts

  • Anecdotal Experiential question
  • Case Study based Question

Section C − 10 Marks Question based on the Craft chosen (Clay/Stone/Metal/Jewellery/Fiber/Textile/Painting/Theatre/Paper) for practice and innovation, on individual basis.

Note: Questions in section B and C above will be based on the practical part of the syllabus. Thus, the time allocation has not been done separately II. Practical-30 Marks Field Studies: Documenting/exploring crafts

  • Two short projects
  • One long project

Applied crafts-40 Periods

  • Learning a craft
  • Innovation in Design and Processes

Class XII (Theory)

70 Marks and 3 Hours

Section A 50 Periods and 40 Marks

Unit-I Overview of the Past-15 Periods and 10 Marks

  1. Crafts in the Past
  2. Colonial Rule and Crafts.
  3. Gandhi and self sufficiency

Unit-II Crafts Revival-20 Periods and 15 Marks

  1. Handloom and Handicraft revival
  2. Crafts Community Today
  3. Production and Marketing

Unit-III Crafts Revival-15 Periods and 15 Marks

  1. Crafts Bazaars
  2. Craft in theAge of Tourism
  3. Design and Development

Section B

Field Studies: Documenting/Exploring crafts-20 Marks

  • Anecdotal Experiential question
  • Case Study based Question

Section C 10 Marks

Question based on the Craft chosen (Clay/Stone/Metal/Jewellery/Fibre/Textile/Painting/Theatre/Paper) for practice and innovation, on individual basis. 30 Marks

Note: Questions in section B and C above will be based on the practical part of the syllabus.

Thus time allocation has not been done separately.

Practical-30 Marks and 60 Periods

Field Studies: Documenting/Exploring Crafts-180 Periods

  • Two short projects
  • One long project

Applied Crafts-40 Periods

  • Learning a craft
  • Innovation in Design and Processes

(Guidelines for Section B and C as well as Practical has been provided in the Work Book: Exploring Craft Traditions of India, prepared by NCERT for classes XI & XII) Section-wise Weightage: Class XI-XII Areas of Learning Theory-70 Marks Section A (Reader) -40 Marks Living Craft Traditions of India-Past, Present and Future-Class XII Section B − 20 Marks Field Studies: Exploring a Craft-10 Marks Applied Crafts-20 Marks

  • Learning a Craft
  • Innovation in design and processes

Annual Examination: Theory: One paper3 hours and 70 Marks

Section A: 40 Marks Short questions: Based on Textbook (80 − 100 words). Four questions of 3 marks each (4 × 3) -12 marks

Long questions: Three questions out of four based on textbook (100 − 120 words) Three questions of five marks each (3 × 5) -15 marks

Definitions: Five definitions out of six based on textbook in three to five sentences. Five definitions one mark each (1 × 5) 05 marks Essay Type: One essay type question out of two based on textbook (150 − 200 words) 08 marks Section B − 20 marks

Aquestion based on the Field Study undertaken. Anecdotal documentation in a descriptive and a narrative style. 10 marks

Comparison and contrast of two or more craft forms based on a given case study. 10 marks Section C − 10 marks Expereince based analytical response of the craft chosen by the candidate (Clay/Stone/Metal/Jewellery/Fabric/Textile/Painting/Theatre/Paper) Practical-3 hours and 30 Marks Field Studies: Exploringa Craft-10 Marks Project Work-05 marks In this part of the course students will be required to do two short and one detailed projects in each class XI and XII. These projects are essentially experiential and analytical in nature.

Each student will prepare: Two short assignments (10 − 15 pages each) In the first instance students will study their immediate environment and learn about everyday crafts. They will prepare an assignment of crafts found at home, in their town/village and local artisans crafts communities.

The teachers may discuss the areas and topics related with the topics mentioned in the following paragraph, before starting the work and they may call a craftsperson or someone from the community who feels comfortable talking to the children and at the same time is well versed with the craft traditions specially of that region. Students may talk to people both producers and consumers, find out about different aspects of production and marketing or study the architecture of monuments, visit museums, study the artifacts (sculpture and painting and crafts) and work on the costumes, jewelry, the way of life etc. The assignments can have drawings, illustrations, photographs, maps etc. The students may choose any two topics from following areas for this short project:

  • Crafts in their own locality/home/state to enable students to understand the design and function of craft traditions in their daily life.
  • Local Heritage in Museum/monuments/religious secular structures to understand various craft skills involved in historic architecture/building/sculpture and painting.
  • Architecture prevelant in a region to study the variety of craft skills in contemporary building of homes, and other structures.
  • Market/shop/mela/haat to understand market forces.

Note: Teacher to assess the two assignments out of 05 marks each and take the best out of the two for final assessment.

Exploring a Craft-Project Work-05 marks

One long term project on Exploring a Craft

This project will necessarily be a scientific, methodical documentation of a particular craft tradition prevalent in the region (class XI), which will have the following core issues in the background, related to theory.

  • Craft Traditions
  • Philosophy and Aesthetics
  • Materials, Processes and Techniques
  • Environment & Resource Management
  • Social Structures
  • Economy and marketing
  • International Examples

Projects taken up for this subject may be divided into different stages of planning, execution and presentation. The projects may be taken up in a group of 4 to 6 students where they can work on a particular craft tradition. In class XI students may visit the crafts-persons in their own region whereas in class XII students may preferably take up crafts clusters of another region.

In the preparatory stage, students along with teachers can discuss about various crafts traditions practiced in the region, their history, distribution etc. collect all information available through various sources including library, internet and resource persons. To avail comprehensive data on various aspects of the crafts, students may develop an interview schedule and decide on number of crafts persons to be interviewed, which all places they will be visiting etc. Teachers must equip the students on interaction with craftspersons and other people from the community, type of language they should use, how to be polite with them and while handling their materials etc. Students can buy some of the objects from craftspersons, take photographs films after seeking their permission, make drawings, etc. Which later on they can use in presentation or submission of project report.

After the completion of documentation, students could make presentation in school assembly/class in parent-teachers'meeting. APPLIED CRAFTS-20 marks This component will consist of a-hands-on-experience of creative work with a multi-disciplinary approach: Learning a Craft-10 marks Students can learn the basics of a chosen craft from a practising local artisan, such as pottery/weaving/drawing and work on its techniques, handling of materials and tools, experiment with colour, form, texture, rhythm, balance etc. They can then experiment with them, know about the traditional practices in that craft, the symbolism in them and the different points of views associated with it. The schools should have all the facilities required for practicing all the processes involved in a craft including working space, materials and tools. Schools may not have a teacher who is also an expert in all these crafts and in such a case, the schools should identify resource persons/craftspersons from the community, who can come to the school for demonstrations and students also can visit them.

Help can be sought from TRIFED, SPIC-MACY, CCRT and other such organizations which are trying to retain the cultural fabric of Indian Society. Innovation in design and processes-10 marks

In this stage, students will develop their creative, innovation skills. They will choose one topic and translate theory into practice based on the interest and regional needs of India, like stone craft in parts of M. P. Tamil Nadu, Orissa, etc. Where stone is easily available.

  • Materials, Processes and Techniques

Experiment with eco-friendly packaging of different crafts.

  • Environment & Resource Management

Recycling of materials, Reducing hazards.

  • Economy and marketing

Assisting a craftsperson in proper methods of costing and pricing, Studying consumer needs/behavior and informing crafts person of changing market trends etc.

  • International Examples

Creative contemporary uses of the craft in India and abroad

  • Creating an Aesthetic Environment

Finally it is critical that students who undertake this course have an opportunity to use what they learn. Students will be asked to practically demonstrate how they will create an aesthetic environment at school, home, and community. They can redesign their classroom with crafts they have studied; they can design a notice board for the school, or decorate the principal's office. Periodically, students can display and organize exhibitions to show the works and obtain feedback. Students can learn how their products can be creatively used in their individual and collective living.

Textbook: In all, there will be three textbooks for classes XI and class XII. One textbook each in both the years will be for theory, and one book giving guidelines/addressing the schools, teachers and students about the practical components.

The theory textbooks for classes XI and XII will be a fully illustrated textbook giving photographs, sketches, maps, timelines, case studies etc. The class XI textbook of theory will introduce children with diverse traditions of the Indian crafts. Whereas the class XII textbook will address the six aspects of Craft Traditions: a. Philosophy andAesthetics, b. Materials, Processes and Techniques, c. Environment

& Resource Management d. Social Structures f. Economy and marketing g. International Examples. These aspects will be studied in light of the crafts traditions referred in class XI.

A work book which will be addressing the students as well as teachers and schools for conducting different activities in practicum, like the field studies and applied crafts will provide some samples of documentation methods/formats based on which children can develop their own formats to conduct them. This will be a book for both years. It will also suggest what facilities the schools should provide for conducting these activities etc. Teacher Qualifications:

  1. Post Graduate in any Art Form, Masters in Fine Arts (MFA) or Masters in Drawing or Painting
  2. An exposure to at least one Craft even if in an unorganised sector.

In case a teacher does not have. ‘A’ as above, an undertaking should be taken so that at least a 10 day training is done with the CCERT/Sanskriti/Crafts Museum/NCERT (DEAA).


Basic space and kiln, potter wheel and other equipments required for the specific craft being offered.

Recommended books:

  1. Reader: Living Craft Traditions of India, Textbook for Class XI (Published by NCERT)
  2. Reader: Living Craft Traditions of India, Past, Present and future-Textbook for Class XII (Published by NCERT)
  3. Exploring the Craft Traditions of India, Class XI & XII.