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The Regeneration Project, Wendy Goldstein & Sue Lennox

Turn on, tune in and drop out. The average American child spends 44 hours a week watching TV, whilst Australian kids spend twice as much time watching TV than they do reading a book. It’s a way of life now, it’s on in the background, it’s on during bath time and as you’re juggling the kids and making dinner. Children are spending less time outdoors and more time looking at a screen. In 1995, Richard Louv coined the term ‘Nature Deficit Disorder’ to describe this disengagement of children from nature.

kids tv

If children spend less time in nature early in life, they’re less likely to care for nature as adults. In this increasingly digital age, how looks the future for nature?

Wendy Goldstein and Sue Lennox (from Macquarie University & Oz Green) have partnered to launch a project called The Re Generation Project, that is asking what can be done to reconnect young people with nature. They’re calling for young people to share their ideas on https://www.facebook.com/theregeneration.inspirenature

Nature’s not a destination, it’s as close as your own backyard!

1 the kids picking flowers

So out we went, into the backyard to play and pick our small stash of plants for our pressed plant terrariums.

DIY PRESSED PLANT TERRARIUM

pressed leaf terrarium with dinos

Draw out your terrarium onto thick sheets of white paper, painting in a little dirt. Glue plants onto your terrarium and layer over with clear contact. Press down over the contact with your hands then cut out.

1 making pressed leaf terrarium

The kids making their pressed plant terrariums

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 Other nature craft ideas… with leaves

2 craft with leavesSticks & Twigs

3 craft with twigsRocks

1 craft with rocks

 


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Marshmallows & Edible Markers

Edible. Markers. Sounds as compatible as Chalk. Cheese.

8 fruity marshmallow sticks

Instructions on the back read “Ideal para Queso”…. ideal for cheese. Yes, remarkable, doodling on cheese, so why not on marshmallows, which is what we did and will do often over the school holidays. Daughter has this thing for fruit sticks: skewers pierced through 1 part fruit: 10 part marshmallow. A bit light on the fruit, nonetheless, after a long day when a little persuasion is required…

watercolour feathers glued to skewers

9 watercolour feathersAdd edible markers, fruit, kids and marshmallows…

10 girls colouring marshmallows

1 finished mm

The girls and the fruits and mallows of their efforts

13 mm girls


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Flying Monkeys

Unleash the monkeys!

unleash the monkeysWith face of blue and silver fur, the flying monkeys of the 1939 The Wizard of Oz film copped a bad wrap. With no back story we assume these miscreant feathered mammals are bad to the bone. Alas they are enslaved to do three times the bidding of the owner of the golden cap. Whilst in the hands of the Wicked Witch of the West, she bids them do her dirty work.

DIY FLYING MONKEYS

Flying monkeys on foam, stencilled and cut out

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Flying monkeys mobile…

1 foam flying monkeys

Sweet dreams!

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Schrödinger’s cat

Curiosity killed the cat… some of the time.

Back in 1935, there was a widely accepted theory amongst physicists when it came to teeny, tiny things not visible to the eye. They agreed that since you can’t see them, it’s possible they could be in state x or state y, so let’s say they’re both, in two states at the one time (the Copenhagen interpretation of Quantum mechanics).

An Austrian physicist called Erwin Schrodinger thought this to be reductio ad absurdum (absolutely whack). He put the theory to life size terms to illustrate his point, this became known as Schrodinger’s cat. The thought experiment goes; What happens when you put a cat in a box with a vial of poison and a trigger. How does kitty fare?

According to the accepted thought at the time, since you can’t see the cat, either possibility is valid, cat is both dead AND alive. When you open the lid reality collapses to one possibility or the other. Until that moment, it’s undead kitty.

cat2

This led to all sorts of other theories about parallel possible realities… but that’s another story altogether!

DIY UNDEAD CATS

drawing schrodings cat

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Zombie Cat Straw Toppers

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Wizard of Oz

Dorothy looked, and gave a little cry of fright. There, indeed, just under the corner of the great beam the house rested on, two feet were sticking out, shod in silver shoes with pointed toes.

sara ogilvie cropped

DIY PAPER WITCH SHOES

1 to 3steps

4 silver paper shoes

5 witchy cardboard shoes

“There’s no place like home,” Dorothy chanted, willing her return back to her Kansas prairie. Munchkins, winged monkeys and an emerald city weren’t lure enough!

Oz winged monkeys

 

Illustrations by Sara Ogilvie

Witches shoes template here: http://www.skiptomylou.org/2008/10/28/paper-witch-shoes/

 

 

 

 

 

 


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Sticker Mandala

1 sticker mandala fin

How to get the kids to sleep?

Back in the day when Jack the ripper was a household name, it was a spoon full of whisky in the bottle. Fast forward to now and there’s ‘controlled crying’ where baby cries whilst parent doses up on the whisky!

Another approach is to read the kids to sleep. An honest look at the frustration of this from one adult to another…

Go to_sleep

And then there’s the Mandala.

1 peach mandala

Made by monks as a tool for guiding individuals along the path to enlightenment. These are lofty ambitions for a mama who just wants bub to sleep! nonetheless surely that kaleidoscope of radial balance will work it’s trance like magic and induce baby into an hour long nap.

DIY STICKER MANDALA

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The finished product

1 sticker mandala fin

Put up in place and wait for desired effect!

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