Saturday, 2 April 2011

Willow Nativity Project

Over two days in October the children in our nursery were fortunate to be involved in working with Louise McLean - willow artist.  This was part of a project funded by the Neighbourhood Renewal Fund, established and managed by Jayne Taggart of Causeway Enterprise Agency. The project involved a total of 9 schools in the Coleraine area. Once all the sculptures had been made in the individual schools, they were assembled together at the Playhouse in Portrush to create the Willow Nativity.  Over Christmas the Willow Nativity scene was on display in The Diamond shopping Centre in Coleraine for the local community to see.

The children learned a great deal during the project. They discovered how to move and weave the willow branches in a safe manner so there was minimal chance of an accident. Different colours of willow were used and there was lots of discussion about length of the branches, their ability to bend and twist.  Fine manipulative skills were developed as they wove. Mathematical awareness was promoted through the creation of stars using triangles which were woven together.


Children became more aware of our living willow tunnels outdoors and the final large piece was initially given a handbag and a pink wig!!  However later she became a witch as we prepared for hallowe'en.


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