Friday, February 24, 2012

Bookmaking at Children's Hospital Boston

I spent a wonderful morning last month at Children's Hospital in Boston. We started with a Child Life staff workshop and ended with one with children. I was so impressed with everything that is done to enhance the children's lives as they undergo treatment. I was contacted by Aaron Devine. He works with individual children and small groups on writing projects and loved the idea of adding bookmaking to his sessions and giving the kids a place for their words. Among those in our adult group were a a cartoonist who worked in a similar capacity and a young woman from The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp Outreach Program. We used recycled materials and made accordions, hot dog booklets, stick and elastic books, step books, and what I call Diamond Fold Books that can be either stars or accordions. They all had great ideas for adapting them to content that would be particularly relevant to the kids at the hospital.

With the children, I wanted to do a project that didn't require a lot of step-by-step directions as they might be arriving at different times throughout the hour. We made wish scrolls from prescription containers which were so easy to get started—just tape a long piece of yarn to either side of the top of the container. Sometimes I cover the whole container with paper and then add collage papers but this time we glued the collage paper directly to the containers using glue stick. The most popular item from the collage box was sticky-back sparkling silver paper.

The last step was the scroll. Aaron was absolutely wonderful in gently suggesting ideas for wishes and drawing the kids along in his own process as he guided them in theirs. Most of my work has been with large groups which is a very different dynamic. I learned a lot from watching him.

Wish scroll projects for you to make


Irēna said...

That is so nice! I have been in Children`s Hopital ,too, but we made sock and glove dolls at that time..

lisa_crofts said...

What a great ablog post it boughttears to my eyes. So lovely to see stories like this.

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