Faith CoLab: Tapestry of Faith: Windows and Mirrors: A Program about Diversity for Grades 4-5

Activity 4: Window/Mirror Panel - A Circle of Workers

Activity time: 15 minutes

Materials for Activity

  • All participants' Window/Mirror Panels
  • Blank paper, cut in strips
  • A variety of illustrated magazines to cut up
  • Optional: Paint and paintbrushes, pastels or other art media
  • 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 magazines to cut up

Preparation for Activity

  • Gather old magazines for participants to cut up, with images of people of all ages engaged in a variety of work. Jobs need not be paid; look for images of people clearly fulfilling a responsibility. Magazines such as Highlights, National Geographic Explorer and Time for Kids are likely to have images that suggest work children can do.
  • Cut strips of paper approximately 2" x 11" for all participants. (If participants are working on very large Window/Mirror Panels, use larger and longer strips of paper.)
  • Make a sample Mobius strip: Hold strip of paper in a straight line with both hands. Twist one end, reversing which corner is up and which is down. Then bring the two ends of the strip together and tape them closed.
  • Have materials easily accessible.

Description of Activity

Participants will cut out images of work to decorate a never-ending Mobius strip, representing the equal respect and dignity that all kinds of work deserve. Show the group the sample Mobius strip you made. Explain how it is made. Make another sample to demonstrate.

Ask the children to bring their Window/Mirror Panels to work tables. Distribute magazines to cut up, blank strips of paper and Window/Mirror Panel basket(s). Tell them they will decorate their strips first, and turn them into Mobius strips later. Say:

We are learning today how to use our first Unitarian Universalist Principle, the inherent worth and dignity of every person, in thinking about work-the work adults do to support themselves and their families and the work you do. Each of you will make a Mobius strip to represent many kinds of work and to remind us that we value all work and believe everyone has a right to dignity of work.

Invite the children to find and cut out images from the magazines that represent people at work, and use them to decorate both sides of their paper strip. They may also draw images to suggest a variety of different kinds of work, using materials from the Window/Mirror basket, and add any finishing touches they wish.

Encourage children to decorate both sides of their strip of paper; once they twist it into a Mobius strip, both sides will show.

When a few participants have their strips decorated, demonstrate making a Mobius strip with one that is finished.

Give the group a two-minute warning so they have time to affix their strips to their Window/Mirror Panels, clean up materials and store their Window/Mirror Panels. If any participants' strips need to dry before they can be twisted, taped and attached to panels, ask them to remain and complete this work and put materials away after the Closing.