Co-operative Artwork

This was another activity aimed to help L and N practise co-operation.  It was also designed to get them to play constructively together as a change from the boisterous play that can get on my nerves need to be defused sometimes.

I set this up as an “Invitation to Play”, inspired again by The Imagination Tree – here is my take on “invitation to co-operate”:

Invitation to co-operate (and create firework art)

This took approximately two minutes to set up, with odds and ends from the craft stash, the important feature being that there is one of everything – one pair of scissors, one glue stick, one try of materials – including such coveted items as one glitter shaker, one pot of PVA glue, one paintbrush, one pot of sequins.

Obviously, this was a gamble that could have gone horribly wrong, since this could easily double as “invitation to come to blows” – but it didn’t.  Seeing as carefully laying out two of everything doesn’t seem to prevent arguments, and my two are definitely capable of fighting over one of two identical items, it seems that the only solution is more activities like this.  I’m inspired by its success!

I told L and N that this was a really special activity, which they were going to work together on, and work out how to share the materials, and ask each other for help rather than me.  And they actually did!

I promise this is not a set-up!  Maybe it was the novelty, but with the occasional prompt, they asked each other “please can I have it after you?”, they passed each other things they have previously been prepared to fight to the death over, L helped N to cut things out when she asked him to.

My favourite thing was that they talked to each other directly instead of using me as a go-between, and solved their own problems together.  this is teaching them resourcefulness, co-operation, self-reliance, negotiation skills – and I like it very  much.  Now to devise some more exercises like this, figure out why it worked so well, and incorporate it into everyday play!













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