Faith CoLab: Tapestry of Faith: Love Connects Us: A Program on Living in Unitarian Universalist Covenant for Grades 4-5

Activity 3: Make Straw Loom Bookmarks

Activity time: 25 minutes

Materials for Activity

  • Leader Resource 2, Straw Loom Bookmark Instructions
  • Variegated (multicolored) yarn
  • Drinking straws, six for each participant (preferably milkshake straws, which are both longer and wider than a standard straw)
  • Sewing needles, one for each participant, appropriately sized for the yarn, beads, and the straws
  • Books of different sizes to serve as measuring guides
  • Masking tape and scissors, including left-handed scissors
  • Optional: Beads large enough to thread onto the yarn

Preparation for Activity

  • Read the instructions in Leader Resource 2, obtain the materials, and make a sample bookmark to show participants.
  • Set out materials at work tables.
  • Invite one or more adult lay leaders to join the group at the close of this activity or session to accept bookmarks on behalf of the designated recipients. Or, make a plan to present the bookmarks to volunteers at another time when the children are present. Be ready to share the plan with the group at the close of this activity.
  • Optional: Review Alternate Activity 1, Make Beaded Bookmarks and consider substituting it for this activity. The beaded bookmarks take less time to make.

Description of Activity

Participants weave bookmarks to give to congregation members identified in Activity 2, Virtual Treasure Hunt for Congregational Volunteers. Weaving and giving the bookmarks not only honors volunteers who sustain the community, it also embodies the "tied together" theme of the program and, if an adult guest can come receive the gift, gives the children an opportunity to connect with adult members of the congregation.

As participants work, engage them in choosing congregational volunteers to thank with a bookmark. Call their attention to the results of the Activity 2 "treasure hunt;" encourage them to choose someone outside their own family. Ask children the reasons for their choices. Help them prepare what to say when they give a volunteer the gift. You might suggest words such as, "Thank you for your service which helps tie our community together." If adult volunteers are present to receive the bookmark gifts, these words spoken by one of the participants may be enough for a simple, symbolic presentation from the group.

Invite one or more volunteers to make a bookmark for the Rainbow Wall Hanging. Invite them to tie a bookmark to the wall hanging now or during the Closing.

If no adults can join you to accept participants' gifts, tell the group your plan for presenting the gifts at another time. If you will give bookmarks to adults on behalf of the group, be sure to report back to the children after you have made the presentation. If children will give bookmarks to recipients on their own, make a note to ask them at a future meeting about their interaction with the adult volunteer(s).

Including All Participants

A leader should pair up with any child who lacks the manual dexterity to weave a bookmark on their own.