Not many kids like summer breaks, for it means being away from friends. Thejomaya gave children a break from summer vacation by organizing a day-long (from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.) art and craft workshop for those in the age group of nine to 12 years at Hotel Aruna, Nungambakkam on Saturday last. The workshop was held for a corporate company, and around 50 children participated in the event.
The day started with a presentation on ‘what is creativity.' Kids were then divided into two groups, while one group was engaged in art work, the other tried their hands at making craft out of waste materials.
In the art session, kids were given the aquatic theme. They were first taught age-appropriate technique of drawing and colouring after which each student was given a half-finished drawing to compete and colour. Coming up with their own innovative ideas, kids drew a computer screen, inside which they incorporated the theme making it into a screen saver. Some kids converted the drawing into T-shirt prints.
Rama, the resource person for the craft section, taught kids the shell craft. Kids were encouraged to assemble the shells in different forms such as birds. Telling students that not all shells can be used for craft work, Rama said using shells with insects in them and sea corals are ban under the law. “Conchology, which the art of collecting shells, is a long process. Fisherwomen, during off-season time collect shells and sell them for livelihood. Before using the shells for craft they need to be cleaned, so they are send to special factories. Shell craft is a recognised craft form and comes under the Craft Council of India.”
Having a keen interest in the craft, Rama learnt it from State award winner Abraham Rahman and has been practicing and teaching for five years now.
Children were also taught to make flowers out of corn husks. “We can find corn shops on every street. The husk, which is often thrown away into dustbins, is a very good craft material. Used in a creative way, kids can make flowers, dolls out of it,” she added.
The third session of the day was treasure hunt. Kids were asked to search for the chits and based on the clue written in them they were asked to weave a story.
A role-playing session was also organised, where kids has to act like their favourite aquatic animal. The day ended with the screening of the film Flubber.