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H is also for Home



Home. Such a small word. Such a BIG meaning.


When we open it up, what does "home" mean?


A child once said to me, "Home is where my heart grows."


Arts, creativity, and imagination increase self-discovery. Self-discovery increases our wellbeing. The more we understand ourselves, the more we identify, respond, and manage our needs. ART CONNECTS is an expressive art resource for children, young people, and adults. Activities are starting points: platforms for individual creativity, exploration, journey and discovery... 


In the first issue of Summer 2018 Art CONNECTS, we explored how we interact with our hands. A multi-dimensional topic, but each dimension has the potential to lead to new insight and understanding. In this 2nd issue of Summer 2018 Art CONNECTS, we will explore what "home" means to you/ your children/ family etc.


(Home is a difficult subject for many individuals. The ideas in Art CONNECTS are general art activities and suggestions to increase healthy self-expression and wellbeing. Adults should review them first for suitability before working with children.)

"Our self is our bowl, imagination our spoon, but our art has no recipe" - CEAACC

The meaning of home is unique to us all. While mainstream definitions of home may influence us, our own definitions come from our own connections, emotions and experiences.

"H is also for Home"

Getting Started


If you're an adult working with a child, start this activity by brainstorming colours, sounds, textures and words that connect with the idea of 'home'.


Some warm-up ideas:


1) Set up a sensory table: gather objects such as fabrics, food, nature, toys, wood... you can even fill pots up with water (each pot a different temperature e.g. very cold, cool, warm).

Arrange the objects on a table.

Take it in turns or work together to explore each object and what it reminds you of when you think of home.



2) Write words connected with 'home' on lollipop sticks or flash cards.

Put the lollipop sticks in sand/ a pot, or lay flashcards face down on a table.

Take turns to pick a lollipop stick/ card and talk about how the word is personal to your understanding of home.








3) Draw,find, make, or write different animals and arrange them on a surface. Take turns, or work together to explore how the idea of 'home' changes for each animal. What's different? What's similar?

4) Use these sentence starters and questions to think more about what 'home' means:

- Home is important because...

- Home gives me...

- Sometimes home can feel ______ and sometimes home can feel ______ .

- Not having a home means...

- My perfect home is/ would be...


- Is home something static or something that moves?

- Can you have more than one home?

- Is home a feeling, thing, place... or combination of ingredients?


Depending on the age, development, and needs of the child/ children you are working with- choose and mix ideas as you feel appropriate.



"H is also for Home"

Materials:


In issue 1 of Summer 2018 Art CONNECTS, the directive was to work on a flat surface- and generally 2-dimensional. This time, think about using new materials, and even working 3-dimensional or including sound. Remember art has no recipe!


Here's some suggestions:

- chalks, pastels, pencils, pens

- clay, model magic, plasticine, play dough.

- natural objects (e.g. feathers, petals, sticks, stones) sand (or sand tray)

- junk modelling (e.g. lids, tubes, yoghurt pots)

- Paper, canvas, natural surfaces

- electronic media

- Musical instruments, sounds

- Movement, dance.


Feel free to mix media and explore how first-artworks can lead on to extended explorations and creations!



Above: From junk to home. Follow your imagination!


(St)ART

"Create Your Own Home"

  1. Now that you have started to explore what 'home' means- have a go at creating your own home.

  2. Your home can be simple colours, lines, marks or patterns.

  3. Your home can be concrete or abstract.

  4. Your home can be minimal, or detailed and multi-dimensional.

  5. Your home can be based on a home in your life (past, present, future)... it could be an imaginary home.

  6. Think about some of the thoughts you had in "getting started"- how do these connect with your art process?

  7. Try to include some of the thoughts and insights you have discovered so far.

  8. Have fun and explore the materials in your art!

  9. Is there anything unplanned that becomes part of your art... perhaps a colour, shape, spill or texture? 

  10. When you think you have finished, step back again and reflect on what you see and  feel. You can add or change your art.... the process is yours!

If possible, talk about the process and your artwork. It may be helpful to write or journal about the experience. 


What have you learned about 'home' through this creative process and experience?

What have you learned about yourself through this art process and experience? 

Have you learned anything about someone else? 

Understanding Self = Understanding Wellbeing


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Counselling and expressive art therapies for children, young people and adults. A holistic service-model integrating Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Expressive Therapies, Person Centered Therapy, Psychodynamic Therapy, and Systemic.

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