LEARNING FROM NATURE’S RESILIENCE 5: NATIVE SURVIVORS

For the fifth of our workshop series on Learning from Nature’s Resilience, we focused on native trees.  After supertyphoon Odette claimed so many of the sacntuary’s mature trees, an assessment was made of the surviving tree species and our suspicion was proven right that those that survived were mostly native trees.  We reached out to the Visayas Native Trees (VNT) Enthusiasts group to help us with properly identifying and learning more about the propagation of these species. So we arranged a special workshop day with the group on Saturday, May 28th.

Welcome and Intro by Eddy Lee, conservation educator and ecotherapist

Warm up activity was laughter yoga led by Joel Lee, Permaculture and Aprotech Solutions educator. 

Then the VNT group went around the nature sanctuary to identify and tag the native trees that survived Odette. VNT members Gala, Tin-Tin, Nonoy, Tess, Sarah, Lito, Bretha and JC examined the leaves of the native trees closely then shared their knowledge of these trees. Gala was the official scribe -writing both local and scientific names of the species on the tags.

When the group had had their lunch, we proceeded with the next part of our workshop which was the expressive arts portion which was led by Paulina Constancia.
The task was: Make your native survivor self-portrait using a leaf or seed from the native tree that you best identify with.

Paulina Constancia during the workshop demo

Each of the participants went around the sanctuary again to source materials for their self-portraits.

VNT enthusiasts and friends with facilitators Paulina Constancia and Eddy Lee (Roundhouse of the J Lee Nature Sanctuary) with the beautiful native survivor self-portraits
Tour of the MONA – VNT enthusiasts and friends

What a wonderful day of sharing love for native trees, art and laughter! So grateful for our learning adventure together, VNT!!!

The Floral Bouquet Self-Portraits

Today we share with you more detail on the expressive arts session on Sunday which was the making of The Floral Bouquet Self-Portraits.
Click here to learn more about this workshop from previous post

Below is the step by step process in pictures…

Below are the individual portraits of our teenage participants:

Very creative use of the fruit stamps and stencils to make these awesome portraits, young ladies! Thank you for sharing your insights and reflections too. We wish you all the best in your learning and development. Till the next time!

LEARNING FROM NATURE’S RESILIENCE 4: FLOWERS & FRUITS

Yesterday, my siblings and I co-taught  part 4 of our Learning from Nature’s Resilience workshop series. This time we took inspiration from the surviving trees and other flowering plants that have recovered and started to bloom, and some are even bearing fruit again!!!

Our participants were homeschooled teenage survivors of difficult situations traveling all the way from Northern Cebu.

My brother Joel Lee, Permaculture and Aprotech Solutions educator, facilitated the warm up laughter yoga and encouraged its regular practice as a way to health and relaxation. 

My sister Eddy Lee, a conservation educator and ecotherapist,  led the tour of the sanctuary’s food forest, higlighting the effect of Typhoon Odette on the fruit trees that were bent, and broken and uprooted. They noticed how the trees are starting to recover because the leaves have sprouted back.  Some of the surviving trees, including a few mango trees, are even flowering. The meditation and vegetable gardens have also recovered and are blooming.

Here are the tools for the expressive arts session: Floral Bouquet Self-Portraits

Before starting the expressive arts segment of our Learning from Nature’s Resilience workshop I distributed the flower quotes below for the participants to discuss within their groups:

“Happiness held is the seed; happiness shared is the flower.” -John Harrigan
Flowers grow back even after they are stepped on, so will I!” – Author Unknown
“Nothing in nature blooms all year. Be patient with yourself!”
“A flower does not think of competing with the flower next to it. It just blooms.” – Zen Shin

Paulina Constancia demonstrates how to make the Floral Bouquet Self-Portraits using fruit stamps
(slices of the following fruit were provided: okra, cucumber, eggplant and balimbing aka starfruit or carambola)

The instruction for the expressive art session was :
Your life is God’s gift to you and what you make of it is like a bouquet of flowers that you give back to God, the earth and humanity.  What kind of blossoms will you bear?
 As you create your floral bouquet portrait focus on your pesonal resilient trait and be ready to share this with the group.

How to Make Your Floral Bouquet Self-Portrait

  1. Use fruit slices provided: (okra, cucumber, eggplant and balimbing aka starfruit, carambola,) and watercolor to make prints on paper of flowers.
  2. Practice with your stamps and layout on scrap paper provided before doing your final layout on the artboard provided
  3. Allow work to dry completely before adding design details with ballpen and pencil crayons. Feel free to do freehand drawing or use some of the stencils available to add details to your work.
  4. Prepare to share your work and personal resilient trait with the group.
Floral Bouquet Self-Portraits in the making
Quick sample floral portrait made by Paulina Constancia
Tools used: carambola (balimbing), cucumber (pepino), bird stencil, water-colour, brush, ballpen

MONA -Museum visit

Our teenage participants gather at the meditation garden at the Justice German Lee Nature Sanctuary

Thank you for joining us for a fun learning adventure at the Sanctuary. We hope you will apply the things you learned here today – Care for the earth, care for each other, care for the future and care to laugh, lots! And believe that you are resilient, you have the capacity to bounce back from the adversities life may throw your direction.

LEARNING FROM NATURE’S RESILIENCE 3: TREES

On Saturday, my siblings and I co-taught  part 3 of our Learning from Nature’s Resilience workshop series. This time we took inspiration from the surviving trees and the regrowth of their leaves and worked with a group of teenage scholars from the St Alfonso Maria Fusco Home, Compostela.

My brother Joel Lee, Permaculture and Aprotech Solutions educator, facilitated the warmup laughter yoga and encouraged its regular practice as a way to health and relaxation. 

My sister Eddy Lee, a conservation educator and ecotherapist, led the nature walk, inviting our teen participants to pay attention to the various species of the trees that survived Super-Typhoon Odette and their leaf patterns. They were able to identify most of our fruit trees and surprisingly some of the native trees. When asked why they had some familiarity with the native trees, most of them said that they still had these trees in their mountain villages.

The ME Tree Self-Portrait
(the camote stamps)

We were recently gifted with some camote (sweet potato) and I thought of using this as a medium for the day’s expressive arts session which is the making of The Me Tree Self Portrait.  

I used two medium camote and cut them into thick slices and distributed them among the participants.  They were each provided a dull knife as a simple carving tool to make their leaf stamps.

Paulina Constancia demonstrates how to make the camote stamp and design The ME TREE Self-Portrait

P.Constancia sample ME TREE

The instruction for the activity was :
If you were a tree, what kind would you be, what leaves would you bear and as you createyour portrait focus on your pesonal resilient trait and be ready to share this with the group.

How to Make Your Stamped ME TREE Self Portrait using a camote slice:

  1. Choose leaf design (shape, veins,etc)
  2. Cut the camote slice to shape/margin of your leaf of choice
  3. Using the dull knife provided start carving out the pattern, bearing in mind that the part you remove from the camote is what won’t print or register on your paper.
  4. Practice stamping on scrap paper before doing your prints and composition on the artboard.
  5. Use watercolor or stamp pad for the color and allow to dry before adding design details with ballpen and pencil crayons
  6. Prepare to share your work and personal resilient trait with the group.
Our camote carvers…
Stampin’ away…
Museum visit after the workshop (inside the MONA)
Our teenage participants in front of the museum
Teenage scholars from the St Alfonso Maria Fusco Home at the
Justice Lee Nature Sanctuary. With them are Paulina Constancia, Sr. Vicenta “Inday” Yap, Sr. Salve Narvaja, Eddy Lee and the goldens- Gabby and Sunny

Thank you Sr. Inday, Sr Salve and our teenage workshop participants for the learning adventure that we shared at the sanctuary. Till the next time!

The Floral Assemblage Self Portraits

We are proud to share with you the creations of our recent Learning from Nature’s Resilience 2 workshop. Taking inspiration from the resilience of flowering plants and trees, the teenage participants were invited to create a floral assemblage self-portrait. They were also asked to focus on personal traits that make them resilient. Some of the traits mentioned were STRONG, UNIQUE, CONFIDENT, PRO-ACTIVE, …
(Click on this link to see workshop process and instructions.)

Here is a gallery of the group’s works. Left image is the actual floral assemblage, right image is the water-colour recreation of the assemblage portrait.

We thank the teenage participants for joining us for a fun learning experience at the Nature Sanctuary.

LEARNING FROM NATURE’S RESILIENCE 2: FLOWERS

Yesterday my sister and I co-taught  part 2 of our Learning from Nature’s Resilience workshop series. This time we took inspiration from flowers, and worked with a younger group – teenage survivors of difficult situtations.

My sister Eddy Lee, a conservation educator and ecotherapist, led the nature walk and discussion on nature’s resilience while I facilitated the art session on the making of floral assemblage self portraits.

The group with Eddy Lee, conservation educator and ecotherapist.

I went on an early morning walk at the Sanctuary to gather the variety of flowers to be used for the art session. I was expecting a group of 17, so it was quite a challenge since this is post-typhoon times and there’s not many kinds of flowering plants left. Despite that I am proud to say that i managed to gather more than enough variety for the participants.

Since this was an exercise on resilience, the participants were not allowed to choose from the floral selection and had to make the most out of the flower assigned to them. However,  they were free to choose the other natural add-ons (stones, twigs, leaves, cowrie shells,etc) to complete their assemblage piece.

Creating the Assemblage Portrait

It was fun watching the girls so focused on creating the assemblage then recreating it on another sheet of paper using watercolor as a medium. Later when each of them had the chance to share their process and their reflections, some said they enjoyed making the assemblage better than painting.  Others said the two versions of the portrait were equally fun to create and complete.

Recreating the portraits using water-color

My thoughts on this is that the medium of flowers and other natural elements was a more relaxing medium for the teens, once they drew and painted they started becoming critical of their work (and themselves). Suddenly, i could hear some saying, ‘I’m not good at drawing!’
My reflection on this is that the closer we work with nature and what’s natural, the more we are free and spontaneous, the more we can be our true selves, and without a doubt creativity is at the core of our human nature.

The artists with their assemblage art at the Roundhouse of the Nature Sanctuary
Museum visit after the workshop to see Paulina’s FLORAL CHORUS collection and other works

The teenage participants with the workshop facilitators – Far left expressive arts educator Paulina Constancia and conservation educator and ecotherapist Eddy Lee. Photo also shows a golden retriever named GABBY, the Nature Sanctuary ambassador.

The Resilient Leaf Self-Portrait Art Workshop

Today I thought I’d show more photos of the art making component of our “Learning from Nature’s Resilience” training the trainors workshop which was participated by head teachers and principals of Cluster 7- Carcar City DepEd.

It was a fun and inspiring day learning about resilience through nature’s example.   From a previous post, I shared the enormous damage caused by Odette to the Justice Lee Nature Sanctuary here in Carcar. Below is a photo of our beloved Acacia tree right after Odette.

It appears that the super-typhoon basically “claimed its life”, but picture below shows what our beloved acacia tree looks like now…fresh new branches and leaves have emerged.

It is a living example of resilience. It may have been hurt and broken by Odette, but it has evidently bounced back and is now thriving!

About the WORKSHOP

Inspired by the re-emergence of leaves amongst the trees that were originally thought to have been completely damaged by the super-typhoon, we initiated a resilience art workshop using leaves as base material.

We had a tray of various pre-cut leaves and distributed them among the participating head teachers and principals. They were not allowed to choose because this is a workshop on resilience. You have to find a way to make good use of your “givens”. I was amazed by what the teachers came up with.

The instruction was: Using the leaf provided make a leaf self-portrait that shows this..”I am resilient because I am _________” (participants choose their key personal resilient trait)

This teacher painted a background of rainbow colours before making the leaf imprint.

This teacher made a few two-colour imprint of her leaf and then drew her portrait using a pen once the water-colour imprint had completely dried

This teacher made several leaf imprints using three different colours and turned it into hair for her self-portrait.
Tri-colored leaf hair for her self-portrait.
Head teachers and principals of Cluster 7- Carcar City DepEd busy creating their Leaf Self-Portraits
Here is an image summary of the works of all the participants from Cluster 7 of Carcar City DepEd
Our tall acacia tree may have fallen but it is definitely not dead. Now lowered closer to the pond, its bent trunk is more accessible and serves as an awesome rest and recreation spot for our farm felines. Once again –All’s well (actually “better” according to our cats’ meows.)😹

LEARNING FROM NATURE’S RESILIENCE 1:LEAVES

Yesterday I had the great honour and joy of co-facilating a training the trainors workshop with my siblings — Learning from Nature’s Resilience. Participants of the workshop were head teachers and principals of Cluster 7- Carcar City DepEd. Workshop program included an introduction to permaculture, a silent nature walk, a discussion on nature’s resilience based on their observations during the nature walk, making Leaf Portraits, and a tour of the Museum of Naïve Art. Why leaf portraits? During Super typhoon Odette (aka Typhoon Rai), all the plants and trees lost their leaves from her fury. The first sign of visible recovery is the emergence of new leaves. The participants made their portraits using leaf imprints and stated their resilient trait. It was a hectic morning filled with nature, art, stories, reflections and laughter.

As shared by one of the participants Sir Guilbert “Miski unsa ka kusog sa unós, naay pagluráng!”
(Translation: “No storm lasts forever”… or you can say.. “no matter how heavy the storm, the moment of calm will eventually come”)
A teacher’s training with the DepEd Carcar City Division- Cluster 7 on learning from nature’s resilience
Participating Schools: Kalam Elem School, Kalangyawon Elem and High School, Ocaña Elem School,
Can-asuhan Elem and High School
Intro to Permaculture with Eddy Lee
Silent Nature Walk
Leaf Self-Portrait Art Demo by Paulina Constancia
Leaf Self-Portrait Art Session
I am resilient because I am…..
The group’s leaf self-portraits, I guess you can call this a “group shot”🤣
Museum Tour
Reading about Paulina Constancia’s art, and taking wings at the museum
Happy spirits and winged hearts
Happy, enthusiastic teacher-learners
The whole group with the facilitators: Joel, Eddy and Paulina
Sanctuary Ambassador GABBY

We join Gabby in thanking you, DepEd Carcar City Division- Cluster 7, head teachers and principals for joining us for a fun and inspiring learning experience at the Sanctuary. Till the next time!

(Gabby wants to remind you that one of the secrets of resilience is being proactive… remember the ‘active voice’ – The dog ate the sandwich… not The dog was eaten by the sandwich)

SOME HELPFUL TIPS ON RESILIENCE from Tasimba
Listen. Watch. Learn. There is so much wisdom and wonder in Nature that strengthens our resilience.

Have a purpose – where do you want to be when this is over?

Be proactive – don’t dwell and overthink things; just make stuff happen

Remain hopeful – look forward to and work towards your goal lines

Learn from the past – act on what has served you well in previous adversity

Focus on wellness – (mental AND physical); it is essential for survival

Stay connected – ‘Together we are strong’ – find ways to stay connected through challenging times (adversity)

MONA opens at The Sanctuary in Carcar 2

MONA is now in Carcar!

Here are more photos from the opening of MONA at its new home at the Justice German G Lee Jr. Nature Sanctuary (“The Sanctuary”) in Bacsije, Barangay Ocaña, Carcar.

Guests at the opening were local folks from the South of Cebu (from Carcar to Argao and beyond)- mostly educators and friends of The Sanctuary.

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Groups of 10 or more may now visit the MoNA by appointment only, email or message us at least two weeks in advance.

MONA opens at The Sanctuary in Carcar 1

MoNA is now in Carcar!

On August 3  MoNA opened its doors at its new home at The Justice German Lee Jr Nature Sanctuary (aka “The Sanctuary”) in Bacsije, Barangay Ocaña, Carcar. Guests at the opening were local folks from the South of Cebu (from Carcar to Argao and beyond)- mostly educators and friends of The Sanctuary.

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Highlights of the Opening:

  • Orientation with Edna Lee
  • Sanctuary Tour with Joel Lee
  • MONA Tour with the artist Paulina Constancia
  • Art Workshops with Stamp and Stencil Starters:
    BANDA BAKI and FISHinating Patterns
  • Buffet Lunch
  • Art & Nature Pop Quiz with Edna Lee

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Check out next post for more photos…
Groups of 10 or more may now visit the MoNA by appointment only, email or message us at least two weeks in advance.

International Mangrove Day Workshop 1

To celebrate International Day for the Conservation of the Mangrove Ecosystem (July 26) The Sanctuary and The MONA held a one-day workshop for a local youth group.

Here are the mangrove birds that inspired this workshop which was facilitated by artist Paulina Constancia. (Photos by perpetual collaborator at The Sanctuary -Mishka Watin)

birds
birds - 2

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Main activities were: Sound Walk/Birdwatching, Drawing Mangrove birds, Role Play and Group singing of song Paulina wrote on the spot about the birds.

Below is the song:

In Cebuano

Mga Langgam sa Katunggan
to the tune She’ll be coming round the mountain (more or less)

Daghang langgam nga madunggan sa katunggan (2x)
Daghang langgam nga madunggan (2x)
Daghang langgam nga madunggan sa katunggan.

Talabon, Tamsi-pipit, Tikarol
Bangkiyod, Mayang Bungol
Ganciang, Tamsi, Maya
Kasadya gyud sa langgam sa katunggan.

In English
Birds in the Mangrove
to the tune of She’ll be coming round the mountain (more or less)

We hear lots of birds in the mangrove (2x)
We hear lots of birds (2x)
We hear lots of birds in the mangrove (2x)

Egret, Flyeater, Kingfisher
Pied Fantail, Chestnut Munia
Glossy Starling, Sunbird, Tree Sparrow.
Oh how joyful are the birds in the mangrove.

IMG_1759-edited

Dino Sock Puppet Workshop

What’s a T-Rex’s favourite number? Eight (ate!) And yes, that’s the same number my son is at. For his 8th birthday he asked for a Dinosaur-themed party.  He decided on a crafts and cupcakes party in his school.  So today I will share with you the Dino sock puppets that he and his friends created during the workshop that I facilitated for his class.

Here are the steps in pictures:

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The socks were pre-sewn and most of the embellishments had sticky backs. Other embellishments had to be adhered (like spikes, pompoms, etc) using a hot glue gun. The kids would come to us and the teacher and I were the only ones allowed to handle the hot glue gun. So we did that part for them while they waited.

Craft Supplies Buffet

Here is the craft supplies buffet table. Each of the kids got a tray and then they picked socks and embellishment for their Dino puppet.

Here are the puppets my son and his classmates handcrafted during his birthday crafting workshop:

Click on image to enlarge.

It was so much fun for all of us… and to add to the birthday fun here are some dinosaur jokes. Here’s to some ROARing laughter for you folks!

Q: Can you name 10 dinosaurs in 10 seconds?
A: Yes, 8 Iguanadons and 2 Stegasaurus.

Q: What do you call a dinosaur that never gives up?
A: Try and try and try and try-ceratops

Q: Why can’t you hear a pterodactyl using the bathroom?
A: Because the ‘p’ is silent

Q: What do you call it when a dinosaur gets in a car accident?
A: Tyrannasaurus wreck!

Q: What do you call a dinosaur with an extensive vocabulary?
A: a thesaurus.

DINO JOKES Source: www.jokes4us.com

PRINTS CHARMING 3: The Textured Plate

I bring you the the last of the 3 part printmaking workshop series that I recently conducted at my son’s elementary school – Monoprinting with a Textured *Plate.
(*a surface upon which a printing process is carried out)

Materials needed:
textured materials like silicon trivets, bubble wrap, plastic mats, plastic fruits trays with raised textured patterns
watercolor paper or card stock (plain index card works perfectly fine, too)
watercolor, tempera or acrylic paint
brushes
water dish
heart-shaped plastic

Here are the steps in photos:

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If you figure out a registration system for your printmaking process then it will be much easier for you to do more stuff to your print. Example, after this step, allow paint to dry then go back and print more design over that heart.

2- texture plate

Monoprint using a trivet and watercolor

Here are some of the hearts created by the young printmakers (6 to 7 year olds) at the workshop – absolutely stunning work!

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heart poster

A Parade of Hearts for your folks. Happy Valentine’s…from our hearts to yours!

 

PRINTS CHARMING 2: The Foam Plate

We continue with our  PRINTS CHARMING series.This time we will use a Foam Plate.
Yes, foam, but not just any foam. What I find to be the best one as mono printing *plate is the material used in foam take out containers.  So, please next time you get those foam food boxes or containers… clean it and save it for a day of printing fun. (*Plate- a surface upon which a printing process is carried out)

Materials needed:
Foam
Ballpoint pen for making impression on foam
printing ink
cardstock or watercolor paper
watercolor, tempera or acrylic colors for background color on paper
inking plate (plexiglass)
rubber brayer

Here are some images of the steps:

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Here are some photos of my students foam plates ( impressions on the foam were made using a ballpoint pen)

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So to make the prints more interesting, I got the kids to paint the paper using watercolor. When watercolor dried, we then did the printing with the foam plate and printing ink.
Look at this slideshow of all the works of my young printmakers…

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Paint your paper and then do the actual monoprint with foam plate and black printing ink.

DSCF7151 2

Notice the letters on the foam plate are on reverse…

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Make a lovely monoprint to frame or some mini monoprints to make bookmarks for your loved ones this Valentine’s.

Try out this simple monoprinting technique…if my 6 and 7 year old students could do it, so can you!!!

PRINTS CHARMING 1: The Foil Plate

I recently conducted a special workshop series at my son’s elementary school on simple ways children could do *monoprinting.
*Monoprinting – is a form of printmaking that has lines or images that can only be made once, unlike most printmaking, where there are multiple originals

I called the series PRINTS CHARMING and here are the techniques that I taught them in 3 different sessions.
Workshop 1-  Making Monoprints using a Foil Plate
Workshop 2- Making Monoprints using  a Foam Plate
Workshop 3- Making Monoprints using a Textured Plate
(*Plate- a surface upon which a printing process is carried out)

Let’s start with the first session PRINTS CHARMING 1: The Foil Plate
Yes, you heard that right…foil, as in aluminum foil. So, please next time you have some used foil, clean it and save it for a day of printing fun.

Materials needed:  aluminum foil mounted on something sturdy like cardboard or plexi-glass, tempera or acrylic paint, brushes, water dish and water color paper or plain index card works too…

Here are some images of the steps:

 

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Check out the photos of my eager young participants at work…

 

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And here are the awesome creations of my little printmakers…

 

Try out this simple monoprinting technique and create lovely one-of-a-kind Valentine’s cards for the dearest people in your life.Cover 1 copy

 

 

 

Virtue Journal and Hand Lettering Workshop

We are happy to share with you some photos and details of the latest sustainable expressive arts workshop at the MoNA, facilitated by Edna Lee of the Psychology Volunteers on Bikes.

Virtue Journal Making and Hand Lettering were the focus of the recent workshop. Below are the materials used.

Tools Needed:

  • Two-hole Punch
  • 12 different beautiful printed papers such as origami and printed card stock;  recycled magazine pages and wrapping paper would also be nice (to use as month dividers)
  • 1 sheet plain or corrugated craft foam (to use as journal cover)
  • Different coloured markers

 

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STEPS:

1. Choose a colored craft foam cover (letter-size/short size)

2. Choose 12 different beautiful printed paper (like origami paper)  to use as dividers for the 12 months

3. Get 26 sheets of letter-size (short) bond paper/printer paper and cut in half horizontally

4. Fold foam cover horizontally and put 4 sheets of  the cut bond paper for each month and put one sheet of printed paper (48 sheets total)

5. Punch, fasten and cut edges sticking out

6. The first four pages are for hand lettering practice.
(At the workshop, the alphabet was written in script on the board and samples of different types of hand lettering  were providedo for every table- —letters embellished with curls, shading, dots, strips, spaces)

8. Write your name on the  inside of the front cover using a combination of hand lettering styles.

9. Write the name of the month on each of the printed paper dividers.

10. Choose one virtue/value you want to reflect on for each month. Use hand lettering to write it on each divider.
(At the workshop, the participants were asked to suggest the virtues they would like to work on. They made a list on the board, and they chose 12, one for each month).
Examples of VIRTUES:  Respect, Generosity, Industry, Joy, Helpfulness, Love, Care, Simplicity, Fairness, Happiness, Obedience, Sincerity

 

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Here are some of the skills developed through the workshop: 

1. DIY – Constructing things helped develop confidence
2. Hand Lettering– Opportunity to improve one’s handwriting and be creative
3. 12 Virtues in Focus– An Invitation to challenge oneself to improve throughout the year

With their newly handcrafted VIRTUE JOURNAL, the participants are tasked to:
Reflect on the following every week:

  • How did I manifest the virtue this week?
  • What can i do to learn this virtue?
  •  List your behavior or manifestation of the virtue in focus

12

Handcrafted VIRTUE JOURNALS created at the MoNA Workshop

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The participants proudly holding their handcrafted VIRTUE JOURNALS

We hope that this workshop will inspire you to make your own VIRTUE JOURNAL and aspire to better yourself this new year 2018.

Here is a set of virtues of the great Benjamin Franklin.

franklins-13-virtues

Image from the envole.net blog

Repurposed Tarps

Happy New Year to all of you from your friends at the Museum of Naïve Art [MoNA] in Cebu.

Recently, the MoNA, in cooperation with the Psychology Volunteers on Bikes (Psych Vols), organized a workshop for women and children in difficult situations. It was a simple activity with a very important message – what society might perceive as trash can still be repurposed and revitalized.

The project:  Turning old tarpaulin banners into useful book bags and day packs (workshop concept and facilitation by Edna Lee of Psych Vols)

collage 1- at work

Three simple steps: 1)cut the tarp, 2)sew with running or blanket stitch, 3) attach strap

collage 2- finished products

Pretty good for first attempt at reused/repurposed tarp bags

collage 3- duo

Check out their handmade DAY PACKS

collage 3- group

Proudly handmade –book bags, day packs, grocery bags!

Christmas Homemade Clay Ornaments 2

We continue with Part 2 of  our Christmas Homemade Clay Ornaments feature here on MoNA. We started with a variety of shapes. Here goes – you can focus on just one ornament shape. You can make all Christmas trees for example.

xmas tree

Make your homemade clay and use Christmas tree cookie cutter…

painting christmas tree ornaments

With just red, white, and green paint the kids were able to create some interesting designs…

trees after painting

Here are the painted trees…

the painted trees

And here they are —ready to hang with beautiful Christmasy baker’s twine…

When I did this Christmas crafting activity in my son’s grade 2 class I brought my ukulele and taught them the song Oh Christmas Tree. Here are the lyrics:

Oh Christmas Tree

Oh Christmas Tree, Oh  Christmas tree,
You stand in splendid beauty.

Oh Christmas Tree, O  Christmas tree,
You stand in splendid beauty.

Your branches green in summer’s glow
And evergreen in winter’s snow.

Oh Christmas Tree, Oh  Christmas tree,
You stand in splendid beauty.

Watch video on youtube

I also found a more meaningful version of the song that would be suitable for older kids or adults.. (try out the chords on your ukulele)

oh xmas tree chords

Lyrics and chords from Tabs by Ultimate Guitar

“O Christmas tree, your beauty green will teach me that hope and love will ever be the way to joy and peace for me…”

Christmas Homemade Clay Ornaments 1

Here is a Christmas project that I did with my son’s class. It all started in our kitchen with homemade clay using a recipe I found on Tips from a Typical Mom.

Homemade Clay recipe

Here are some photos from our kitchen while my 7 year old son and I prepared the homemade clay.

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Allow to cool and let the Christmas painting fun begin!!!

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Here are the ornaments painted by my son and his classmates…

9- classroom tree

They now hang on the cardboard tree I made for their class.

Wanna make this tree? It’s easy.  Just cut cardboard, paint and put a strip of of wood in the back of the tree  for support.  I drilled a hole on top of that wood strip so I could put string through for hanging. To hang the ornaments, use a roundhead paper fastener.

Spread the Christmas spirit — make your personalized clay ornaments in your home, classroom, or workplace… if my little boy and his classmates could do this project so can you.

A Beary Fun Workshop

It is with great pleasure that we share with you our most recent workshop “Beary Fun”, which took place last Saturday, Nov 25th.  The project concept and materials were prepared by  Zed Lee of the Psychology Volunteers on Bikes (Psych Vols)  while the actual workshop was facilitated by Edna Lee also of Psych Vols, and another regular MoNA volunteer Wae Seon Yun.

The workshop participants were women and children in difficult situations.

A pattern, some old jeans material and a set of instructions were provided by Zed Lee. Here are the steps:

First Step: Trace pattern on the underside of fabric.

Second Step: Sew along tracing – using running or back stitch to create the Teddy bear shape inside out.  Leave about 3 inches open/unstitched to give you room to insert filling/stuffing (preferably on the side of belly or top of the bear’s head)

Third Step: Give about 1/2 inch allowance and cut around the tracing/stitching

Fourth Step: Now bring the pattern side to the outside by pulling it through the 3 inch opening.

Fifth Step: Stuff your bear and stitch up the opening (slip stitch)

Sixth Step: Embellish/dress -up your Teddy Bear with buttons, patterned fabric and laces. You may also add extra details using a sharpie or acrylic paint.

Final Step: Hug your Teddy Bear and share its story with the group.

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Here are the girls with their Teddy Bears…

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Fun groupings of the Teddies…

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Everybody gets the chance to share their stories…

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You can tell from our volunteer Wae Seon’s face how much she enjoyed the BEARY FUN workshop..

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Here’s a group photo of the Teddies…

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Here’s a group photo of the Teddies and their creators. Photo also shows facilitators Edna Lee and Wae Seon Yun

Special thanks to Zed Lee, Wae Seon Yun and Edna Lee, the Psychology Volunteers on Bikes, West Gorordo Hotel and My Refuge House.

“You really don’t have to be young to find a friend in a teddy bear.”
-Rachel Newman

“There’s just something about a Teddy Bear that’s impossible to explain. When you hold one in your arms, you get a feeling of love, comfort and security. It’s almost supernatural.”
-James Ownby

“Teddy bears don’t need hearts as they are already stuffed with love.”
-Unknown

Quotes from I Love Teddies