Faith In Action: Wow Mosaics
Activity time: 45 minutes
Materials for Activity
- Mosaic stepping stone mix (available at craft stores such as A.C. Moore or Michael's)
- Mosaic glass chips (available at craft stores, such as A.C. Moore or Michael's) and shallow containers
- Mosaic plastic molds
- Bucket, paint stirrer, putty scrapers, and rubber gloves
Preparation for Activity
- Determine recipients for the mosaics, consulting with your minister or religious educator. You might use the mosaics to decorate a garden (for example, your Love Will Guide Us Garden, if you planted one in Session 1, Faith in Action) or give them as gifts to another group in your congregation. You might give the mosaics to church volunteers as a "thank-you" or to individuals who are ill or have recently experienced a loss.
- Plan a time when participants can place their mosaics in the garden or present them to recipients.
- Read mosaic stepping stone mix instructions and gather all the materials you will need, including water.
- Set mosaic glass chips in shallow containers at work tables.
- Optional: Work with your minister or religious educator to briefly present the mosaics during a worship service.
- Optional: For a multigenerational project, invite members of the congregation to join you in this activity.
Description of Activity
Participants create beautiful works of art out of small bits of glass, reinforcing the idea that something broken can be used to create something beautiful. With the glass they can make images representing things that fill them with awe and wonder, reinforcing our Unitarian Universalist Source, "The sense of wonder we all share."
Hold up a glass chip and say, in your own words:
This is a broken glass chip. We are going to use glass chips like this one to create something beautiful. We are going to make tile mosaics using the glass to make pictures of things that make us feel awe and wonder-things that bring a feeling of "Wow!" into our hearts.
Invite participants to name things that make them feel awe and wonder. Guide the conversation away from the temporal and mundane-such as roller coasters, 3-D movies, and candy-toward the unexplainably marvelous-such as new babies, kittens, rainbows, sunsets, flowers, dinosaurs.
Tell participants to whom they will give their finished mosaics. Talk about the importance of sharing wonder with others and emphasize how generosity makes others feel happy.
Mix the stepping stone mix with water in the bucket according to the instructions. Pour it into the plastic molds and have the children decorate stepping stones with the stained glass chips.
NOTE: The tiles will need to dry and harden over night.
Include the participants in placing the hardened mosaics in the garden or presenting them to their recipients.
Optional: Present the mosaics during a worship service. Tell the story, "The Scratched Diamond" to the congregation and invite participants to show the mosaics they made and share about the "Wow" moments of awe and wonder they represent.
Process this activity with questions such as:
- I wonder how you chose your "wow" moment of awe?
- I wonder if it felt easy or hard to create something beautiful out of the broken pieces of glass?
- I wonder how it feels to create a mosaic to give to someone else (or, for our garden)?