Wednesday’s workshop was a hive of activity! The children were invited to choose from a selection of materials including shells, rocks, sticks, leaves, gum nuts, leaves and feathers which were presented in tins and other repurposed containers. Next the children chose where they would like to work using a coloured card place mat as a prompt.
It was always the intention for the participants to go by what they wanted with as few suggestions from me as necessary. I discovered that some of the children did actually want a bit of a guide at least until they got started and let themselves become immersed in the process of creating.
Some children worked together, and some preferred to work alone. The room was abuzz with conversation and ideas were shared and exchanged between them. Materials were shared and swapped as none of the mandalas were permanently stuck together with glue or tape.
As the session progressed the space became quieter and more contemplative as the designs became more intricate and detailed. Spreading out on the floor gave the children more freedom to work, leaving the standing space on the table top.
Bringing the whole group back together, they formed a circle whilst all the materials were gathered up and re-presented for the participants to create a giant mandala.
I was blown away by the way the children showed kindness and consideration as they took turns to add to the piece, especially as it was a first meeting for most!
It was wonderful to be able to provide an opportunity to advocate mindfulness and creativity using materials that are in abundance and to help connect them to the beauty of nature.