‘ X marks the spot….!’

Clare had captured the children’s thoughts and recorded them on the ‘thinking tree’ and we used these as a reference and startpoint for our next activity. I felt it would be a new learning experience for the children to share their ideas and collaborate to create a large scale map, which would open up different kinds of possibilities and creative challenges for active learning skills…engaging physical dynamics as well as imagining and problem solving. For this we would need a big space and we were lucky enough to be able to borrow a school hall for the day, which also gave the children a new space in which to learn.

I designed the space so that the children would be encouraged to move about and independently choose materials and create areas for their map.

As our giant map developed it was interesting to observe the different ways in which individual children were engaging with their learning…some were very specific about what they wanted to add, some were quietly making their own bits for the map….others were working together…some were quite happy being independent, while some asked for more support from adults.  As the sun shone through the hall windows there was a lovely sense of shared creative buzz and industry…

Our images and ideas were sometimes used as reference points but the session was very open ended. As new groups of children took their turn through the day the map became evermore complex and diverse….with wonderful textural and linear details emerging from the choice of materials and techniques….

…snaking rivers…bear caves…volcanoes…jungles and roads all appeared on our map….the teachers were amazed at the focus and sharing that the children were demonstrating through the session.  As we finished the day and wondered how we could transfer this fantastic creation to Rosen classroom, Clare had the wonderful idea of draping it over the story cave which positions it perfectly to be enjoyed as a stimulus for language, roleplay, and  story….

for our next session we are planning to take our mapping into the outdoor space…??!


About gizellakwarburton

Visual artist, contemporary textiles and mixed media. Sensory tactile creative sessions with schools, galleries and museums.
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