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Topic: Need Ideas for Crafting with Special Populations  (Read 474 times)
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endymion
« on: June 16, 2019 10:42:56 AM »

Hi everyone!

I volunteered to lead a craft session for people who have Alzheimerís. Someone suggested that card-making would be a good activity for this type of group, so I agreed to do that.

Iím very comfortable with public speaking and interacting with the participants, but having never done this before, Iím not sure how to structure things and what to expect.

Do you think I should pre-cut lots of identical pieces and then lead the group through assembly of few pre-set designs? Or leave it more open, allowing them to explore a variety of materials and make ups their own designs?

Any advice at all would be greatly appreciated!!!! Hoping someone out there has had some experience doing this sort of thing.

Modified to add: I meant to also mention that I will also be helping with a cookie decorating activity with residents at a mental health facility. Thatís a few weeks away, but could also use tips for that event.

Thanks!
« Last Edit: June 16, 2019 10:45:32 AM by endymion » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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« Reply #1 on: June 16, 2019 02:37:11 PM »

I would leave the art activity more open ended, not so much where they are told what goes where.  They might not process the directions well, and become angry or sad or even act out.

There's great deals on art canvas' at Michaels...I don't know who would be paying for the materials for your time with the group, but using different types of mediums on the canvases would be wonderful, I think.  Crayon, markers, there's those different colored bingo dot thingys (Anyone know the real name for them? Roll Eyes, etc...

The people would have something to take home, or could be hung up at the place where you are doing the activity.

I'd love to hear how it turns out once you do it.  Good luck and have fun!
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« Reply #2 on: June 16, 2019 03:57:31 PM »

I agree with LBABB. I was trying to think of whatever direction could possibly be less agitating to them.

I know what you are talking about with the "dotty things," but can't think of what they are called. I know kindergarteners use a "Crayola," I believe, version in marker, and I've seen it in paint, too.
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« Reply #3 on: June 16, 2019 07:09:33 PM »

Depending on their genders and ages, you might explore crafts they might have done when they were younger. Sometimes, itís easier for them to tap into those memories.  Crayons often is very therapeutic because it was such a part of most all of our childhoods.  Good ol childrensí clay can also work well.

One thing you might want to watch for is dexterity challenges.  I did a few zen doodling sessions at a retirement home and one fellow had a hard time drawing because his hand trembled.  Thankfully, I was able to process it as his zigzaggy lines just made different kinds of doodles.

Bingo markers can be found at dollar tree shops and there are the stamping markers that kids use.

They also respond well to fidget blankets, but Iíd think having them make them might be a challenge.
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endymion
« Reply #4 on: June 16, 2019 09:06:26 PM »

Thanks, everybody! Appreciate all the input; it has definitely been helpful as I continue to plan and prepare. Iíll let you know how it goes.

Of course, if anyone has other thoughts, donít hesitate to add on. Thanks again!
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« Reply #5 on: June 17, 2019 03:04:50 PM »

BINGO MARKERS!!!!!  That's the name of them!  Thanks, Maimum!  Something so simple, but couldn't remember the name of them.   Tongue

Whoever suggested clay-that's an AWESOME idea!  I used to be a teacher and clay and similar materials were used with children receiving occupational therapy and also given to children who needed to calm down.  It works wonders!

Clay's consistency is pretty hard though, maybe some Crayola air dry clay?  Again, it would leave the individuals with something to take home, and they could even paint or color it, etc... once it dried.
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endymion
« Reply #6 on: July 03, 2019 07:35:42 AM »

The card-making session went great! We had about one volunteer per participant, which worked really well. Some of the participants needed help reaching items from the center of the table, or wanted us to cut specific shapes for them, etc.

Thanks again for all the great ideasówill have lots to go on, when planning future sessions.
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« Reply #7 on: July 03, 2019 07:37:40 AM »

Great news!
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« Reply #8 on: July 03, 2019 09:51:49 AM »

So what project(s) did you end up doing with them?

Thanks for giving us an update!
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« Reply #9 on: July 03, 2019 09:52:30 AM »

Sorry, endymion...I missed the first sentence of your post, apparently.  Tongue Roll Eyes
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endymion
« Reply #10 on: July 04, 2019 09:59:23 AM »

This first time, we had already told them we would be doing cards, so had to do cards. But we can maybe do different things next time.
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« Reply #11 on: July 05, 2019 06:45:52 AM »

AhhhhÖ..
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