Activity time: 20 minutes
Materials for Activity
- Handout 1, Connections Sewing Cards
- Card stock
- A deep one-hole punch or sharp, pointed scissors
- Yarn and scissors, or pipe cleaners and clear tape
- Markers or crayons
- Plastic sewing needles for canvas-weight/card stock
Preparation for Activity
- Obtain materials. Plastic sewing needles for canvas-weight materials are available at a fabric or craft store, such as JoAnn Fabric.
- Copy Handout 1 on white card stock for all participants.
- Punch a hole in each of the rectangles on the handout. Punch a hole at the bottom of the oval. If you do not have a deep hole punch, use sharp scissors to make holes.
- Thread about 18 inches of yarn onto plastic needles for all participants.
Description of Activity
Participants connect themselves to families and friends with yarn to demonstrate how love and forgiveness surround them.
Gather participants together at work tables or on the floor. Pass out crayons and markers. Pass out Handout 1, but ask participants to wait until you explain the activity.
I wonder who your friends and family are. (Pause.) Where are some of the places that you have friends and family? Today we are going to make cards that show some of the people in our world. First we'll draw and then we'll connect all the drawings. Begin with the oval in the middle. There you will draw yourself and place your name. Let's do that now.
Offer to help children write their names, if they wish.
Next we will draw pictures in the rectangles to show people in our lives. It can be families or teachers, friends or neighbors. You choose who you draw. Fill as many rectangles as you wish. Then we will do some sewing.
As participants finish, affirm their drawings. Ask about the people or places they drew.
Explain that they are going to try to connect themselves with each of the squares on the edges using yarn. Demonstrate sewing from the middle oval to a rectangle and then back to the middle and to another rectangle. Allow participants to sew on their own. There is not a right or wrong way to sew this. No matter which connections they make, it will still illustrate that love surrounds them through people connections.
If participants run out of yarn, tie a new piece of yarn onto the end. The most difficult part will be when participants try to pull the yarn too tight.
Instead of yarn, you can use pipe cleaners. Show children how to use one pipe cleaner for each connection. Bend the ends of the pipe cleaners into the holes and tape them on the back of the card.
Process this activity using these questions:
- This activity shows how we are surrounded in love. Who surrounds you in love?
- How are other people important in our lives?
- These are the people we know the best. Why does it hurt us if they do not treat us fairly?
- I wonder how fairness connects to forgiveness.
- I wonder why we might need to forgive someone who treats us unfairly.
- Share how it feels to be treated unfairly.
- Share how it feels to forgive someone.
Including All Participants
For the youngest participants, sewing might be a new endeavor. To keep frustration levels down, punch more holes and let them just sew in and out of whichever holes they wish. More holes will eliminate the long pieces of yarn that may get tangled. If a child lacks the fine motor capability to sew, work directly with them; invite them to tell you how they want the rectangles and the oval connected and do the stitching for them.