Activity 5: Window/Mirror Panel - Reflections of Prayer
Activity time: 10 minutes
Materials for Activity
- All participants' Window/Mirror Panels
- Handout 1, Finger Labyrinth, from Activity 3
- Optional: Newsprint, markers and tape
Basket(s) of Window/Mirror Panel materials:
- Sheets of Mylar(R) in several colors, shiny gift wrap, aluminum foil and other reflective paper
- Sheets of plain or construction paper
- Scraps of fabric
- Color markers (permanent markers work best on Mylar)
- Glue sticks, tape (including double-sided tape) and scissors, including left-hand scissors
- Optional: Stick-on sequins, a hole-puncher, yarn, ribbon, and a variety of old magazines to cut up
Preparation for Activity
- Set out all participants' Window/Mirror Panels and the basket(s) of Window/Mirror Panel materials on work tables.
Optional: Write on newsprint and post these prompts:
- Mirror: How prayer is (or could be) useful, meaningful or satisfying to me?
- Window: What do I understand, question or respect about prayer practices of others?
- If this activity will be incorporated into Activity 4, Prayer Stations, designate a co-leader to lead the discussion (see Description of Activity) with individuals or small groups as participants arrive to begin work on their Window/Mirror panels.
Description of Activity
Participants respond to the session by adding to their Window/Mirror Panel a representation of what prayer means to them or of an aspect of prayer they personally relate to.
Engage children to identify prayer purposes and/or practices which they do now or might in the future find useful, meaningful or satisfying (the Mirror question). Ask them to articulate their understanding, questions and respect for practices others use (the Window question). For some, this may be the beginning of a lifelong introspection about prayer practice. One-on-one conversation with individual participants may be extremely valuable. Acknowledge that finding a suitable practice is a very personal matter and their choices may change over time.
Use these questions to elicit reflection:
- At which prayer stations did you feel the most open? The most creative? The most loved? The most challenged? The most yourself? The most inspired?
- Can you imagine yourself using any of these practices in the future? What would that be like?
- How can we show respect for spiritual practices that others use?
Invite each child to represent their relationship with prayer on their Window/Mirror Panel, using any media available. As a starting point, suggest they incorporate the finger labyrinth (Handout 1) in some way.
Welcome visiting parents and other adult volunteers to join the children in responding to the session through artwork. You may wish to engage adults with the same questions you ask the children, yet, remember this is the children's time to respond, inquire and reflect. Adults should mostly listen to the children's observations and briefly add information or correct an understanding as needed. You, too, might briefly describe a prayer practice of your own or some observations or questions about prayer practices used by others.
Give a two-minute warning so everyone has time to complete work on their Window/Mirror Panel, clean up materials and store the Window/Mirror Panels.