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Nature Connections 14 - Wild Art

Following on from yesterday, here are three more very different creative activities to try out.

Out and About – Journey Sticks

This is an activity which I have used at forest school with everyone from toddlers to adults. It is always interesting to see the different things which catches people’s eye, even if they’ve been on the same journey together. 

Find a stick which is about as long as from your elbow to the end of your fingers. Next get a piece of string or wool that is as long from your foot to your armpit. Tie it firmly on one end of the journey stick so it looks like a fishing rod. Take your journey stick with you on your exercise walk finding different natural objects on your way. Tie them onto your stick as you go by making sure you wind the string firmly a few times around the object before you tie it. Continue collecting and tying on as you travel on your journey. 

When you get home you can look at your stick and recount where you have been from looking at your stick. You could use this as a written piece of work if you wanted to take the activity further, using the journey stick as a visual prompt.

In the Garden – Hapa zome (Japanese leaf dying )

Hapa-Zome is a Japanese term meaning‘leaf-dye.’ This is a fun activity which involves smashing up plants to release their natural pigments into cloth. To do this you will need a mallet or smooth pebble, a small piece of white or pale coloured cotton and a selection of leaves, small flowers or petals. Remember to always use found plants.

  1. Fold your cloth in half and crease then open out.

  2. Position the natural materials on one side of the cloth as desired. Cover the materials with the other side of the fabric.

  3. Hammer all over the folded fabric for a few minutes.

  4. Carefully unfold the fabric and remove the plant matter to enjoy the imprint on the fabric.

Staying at home – spider web weaving Did you know? Spider’s silk is very strong and elastic. If it was the same weight as steel, spider silk would be stronger! It takes a spider over an hour to spin its web. There are 40000 species of spiders and they are all carnivorous except one! To make your spider web you will need coloured wool, 2 short sticks (chop sticks, pencils, lolly sticks or kebab sticks all work well), scissors.

  • Take a long length of coloured wool and secure the the 2 sticks together in a cross shape in the centre of the cross (use tape if its too slippery).

  • Wind the wool over and around each of the the 4 sticks in turn. Continue until you have used all the wool.

  • To connect the next piece of coloured wool, tie the two ends together and continue winding.

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