Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Future Scrapbookers

I had the privilege of interacting with the gradeschoolers from my kids' school last February 12. I volunteered to teach them how to scrapbook as one of the school's Literacy Week activities. I was initially being drafted to be a parent representative for Family Day which involves games, cheerleading and lots of running. I figured I would do better with scrapbooking. I was never any good at games and our family track record for Family Days is lousy. The team we are in always loses. (This year was a happy exception!)

I decided to teach the kids how to make a mini-album about their families. It will make a for a nice Valentine's gift for their parents. I had extra paper from my slabs and stacks (each design usually comes in threes or fours) so I didn't ask the children to bring anything except for their pictures, glue, ribbons and other art materials they wanted. I just bought these long linen cartolinas to cut for folding into an accordion and I was all set.

Special mention and thanks have to go to Nita who helped me cut the papers the very night before my "class." I swear, this lady's brain is like a ruler. One look at the papers and she knew exactly the sizes to cut to avoid wastage. Left on my own, I would've used a system that was far from efficient and would've taken me the whole night to make. I had to prepare 18 kits - 10 girls and 7 boys. Thank God, for scrapbooking friends.

I was quite excited on the day, no, wasn't nervous at all. I think my kids Diego and Sarah who are in grades three and one, respectively, were more nervous than I was. But basically, I think they were proud to have their mother there. There was some moment of confusion though with how they would address me. Sometimes I was Mama, at times, Teacher, more often, Teacher Mama or Mama Teacher.

The session went well. We went through the kits page by page. The kids could follow. (More so than I could say for some of us during scrap workshops). A little slowly for the grade 1 students. The grade 3 students, specially the girls were far more advanced, as expected. The best part was when I let them do their own thing - add their pictures, decorations, messages, etc. I set up three stations for stamps, decorative scissors and punchers. Finally, my supplies and tools put to really good use.

I was really touched with what the children wrote on their albums. One 7 year old girl asked me if I thought her Mom would like her message which read: "Dear Mom, You really nice. You are the nicest Mom in the world." A six year old boy stamped "I love my family" on the cover of his album. Not quite content, he further wrote, "very much." It wasn't the precision work of adult scrapbookers but these kids had fun creating something all by themselves.

The class gifted me with a scrapbooking album afterwards, but really, the experience was reward enough.

Bright curious creative innocent minds. I am so honored.

(Digital kit from Refresh Collection)

The basic kit for the accordion mini-album

Cover pages of Diego and Sarah's masterpieces

Sarah's message - so sweet

Diego's message - so practical

I love how they personalized their works

Proud of her handiwork

Proud of his album and recycled robot in the background

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