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  • Activities and Competitions

    Organizing activities and competitions can be fun but there are times you need some fresh input. In the activity drop-down menu below, you can find heaps of ideas. What about a Paper Plane Competition?
  • Activities

  • TIP: Think inside the hat!

    Party hats, store-bought or made from pages of an old book or scrap paper are very useful for a display. You can staple the hat to the board as a container for whatever you want to showcase. Or hang them in front of the board filled with little notes, poems, toy animals or whatever takes your fancy
  • TIP: Staple at an angle

    Removing old display items will be much easier when you hold the stapler at an angle when you tack items to the board. The staples will stick out at one side - perfect to get hold of and pull them out when you change displays.
  • TIP: Use a glue gun

    Glue guns are the most fantastic tools for creating displays. You can attach all sorts of materials like hard plastic, metal, fabric and everything else you can think off. Be careful with your fingers (blow - blow) the glue is very hot and you easily get blisters
  • TIP: Create a 3D effect!

    Create a 3D effect by hanging objects in front of the display board, like fish in a Sea Life display or lanterns in a Spring or Garden display.
  • TIP: Don’t overdue it!

    Too much text, images or books on display too close together distract the eye. It all becomes a blur. Each object needs its own space. Think of a shop window that is more than full with appliances, you can’t distinguish one object from the other, while carefully placed objects attract the attention.

Peace Week

 

For Peace Week I wanted to come up with something ‘out of the box’ something that would entice the students to get involved. Slowly an idea evolved. What about a tree? A large Peace Tree where students and staff could hang their peace wish from. It had to be a large tree as it needed to be seen from most areas in the library to make an impression!

We are lucky enough to have some very creative people at the maintenance team. Once in a while I can ask them to create something for me and if they’re not too busy with other projects they’re happy to help me out. After explaining my idea they made me a freestanding plywood tree using a concrete block to stand it in. It was up to us, or better our visitors, to get the bare wood filled with peace wishes.
After an hour cutting leaves out of coloured paper we thought we’d created a pile that would last forever but it was all used up within days. Because of the time of year, we used orange, green and yellow autumn colours.

What you need:

  • a fantastic maintenance team of husband or neighbor or a handy (wo)man who does all that herself
  • plywood
  • concrete block
  • material previous display if you have
  • information internet about peace week
  • (enlarged) images symbolizing peace
  • coloured card
  • several packages of blu-tack to paste the leaves to the tree but a glue stick will work as well/stapler/tape/guillotine/scissors/ruler/glue stick/marker

What to do:

Organize a plywood or real treetrunk or create one yourself with branches from trees. On this webside you can find several displays in which I use real branches. If it’s freestanding you need to secure it. A concrete block works a treat or a Christmas tree stand. If you situate it against awall, make sure you attach it securely.

 

To cover up the concrete base I collected falling leafs from the trees outside our doors and attached them with blue-tack to the trunk and base.

We wrote a few peace wishes on the leafs to start off with and with markers and a handful of paper leafs we asked visiting students to write a wish and put it on the tree. Most of them were happy to do so, though some needed a bit of encouragement or advice about what to write.

I explained that they could write what they wanted as long as it had to do with peace, for instance a peace wish for their family or a particular friend. Maybe a peace wish for themselves or a wish for the world. They could write what peace meant to them, how they saw peace or wanted it to be.

We were not sure if the students would participate but within a few days the bare tree was covered in leafs. The packets of blue-tack we used to attach the leaves vanished like mist on a sunny morning and I started using a glue stick and tape. When the surface was completely covered I stacked the leaves between the others hoping the wishes could still be read.

The tree was a bit wobbly and it actually needed a bit more support at the higher end but for the maintenance team and me it was a good learning experience. Next time we’ll support the plywood with a spine of planks in the middle, acting like a truck. Some of the wishes were heart warming and some were heartbreaking like:I wish my brother could live with me or visit me more often

Some of them were for the whole of humanity but most were very personal. Standing in front of the tree and reading all those wishes, hopes and dreams was a great experience for all of us.

With a little bit of imagination the peace dove on the other end – made by the same team – could have flown away with a branch in its beak.

 

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