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

Activity 3: Window/Mirror Panel - The Age I Am

Activity time: 15 minutes

Materials for Activity

  • All participants' Window/Mirror Panels
  • Optional: Blank paper or card stock, cut to a size that can be placed within Window/Mirror Panels
  • 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

  • Consider the size of participants' Window/Mirror panels and the number of projects each panel will include (that is, the number of sessions you plan to lead). You may wish to cut blank paper or card stock in a specific sizes or shapes for this assignment.
  • If you have a multi-age group that includes guests, provide paper and arts and crafts materials so everyone can do this assignment, with or without a Window/Mirror panel. Plan where guests might display their pictures at the close of this activity or session.
  • Have materials easily accessible.

Description of Activity

Ask the children to bring their Window/Mirror panels to worktables. Distribute Window/Mirror panel basket(s) and any other materials you may have brought. Say:

Today you will add another view of yourself to your Window/Mirror panel. You can use pictures, words, collage, or a combination to show how you fit into multigenerational community.

If you have guests, invite them to do the assignment on an individual piece of paper. Explain any plan you have for how the guests might display their work after the activity.

Remind participants that "multigenerational" means a wide span of ages and stages of life. Ask the group for definitions of "community." Affirm answers such as: A community is a group where everyone feels like they belong; it has a shared purpose; it is people with something in common; it is being together for a reason everyone cares about.

Ask participants to think of a time when they gathered with people of many different ages, from very young children to older adults. Suggest it might be a congregational event they talked about earlier in the session; a gathering of family and friends; a public event such as a parade, a community fair, or an arts performance; or sports event. If they cannot think of a real experience they wish to represent, they may imagine a multigenerational community gathering. Ask everyone to raise their hand when they have an image in mind.

Once most have raised their hands, invite everyone to position themselves with any others their age in the community gathering. What are the people their age doing? What are people of other ages doing? You may wish to ask some volunteers to describe their multigenerational event and tell what different age participants are doing.

Now invite the children to create an image of multigenerational community for their Window/Mirror panel. Tell them they may use drawing/painting, collage, writing, or a mixture of these. Ask them to make sure they feature themselves or their age group in their representation.

Give the group a two-minute warning so they have time to affix their image to their Window/Mirror panel, clean up materials, and store their Window/Mirror panels.