This summer Paradiso Ritrovato got the chance to test CiP activities in different contexts. Here we want to share with you two experiences in which we led the same session in two settings – one non-formal and the other formal.
The session, called “Sharing is Caring”, is about the three permaculture ethics and offers children the possibility to act as a tribe. We started by singing together, sharing stories in a circle and painting our faces. The tribe then explored and performed different rituals embedding the three ethics. For Earth care they create a mandala, for People care they take care of each other and for Fair share they shared their snacks.
In July we were invited to the Summer Italian Ecovillages Gathering to offer activities in the children’s area. We led this session during the whole morning for a group of 30 children aged between 3 and 8 years old. The group had very diverse backgrounds, with some children already familiar with permaculture whilst others were not at all. Despite this, they all loved the session. Children were active and participative, easily following the session even though it was more structured than the other activities. It was beautiful to see the curiosity, the interest and the care they showed during the whole session. At the end of the day, the adults such as parents and volunteers, were very curious about the CiP project.
In August we led the same session in a very different context – in a primary public school in Switzerland. The school invited us to introduce the ethics as a way to prepare their school garden. The teacher wanted us to present the ethics in a playful and active way, to engage children and raise their emotional involvement in the garden project. We spent the whole morning in the garden with a class of 20 children from 6 to 7 years old, plus the teacher.
Children had great fun and enjoyed singing together, facepaints and all the tasks we asked them to keep for the following days in particular the angels game. In this formal education setting, the session also worked well because it was playful and light and has many connections to their ordinary activities in school, and also opened up areas for further discussion.