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JAVI’S JOURNALS – SURVIVING THE EASTER WORKSHOPS WITH DOZENS OF CHILDREN!

11/04/2017

Welcome to this new post of Javi’s Journals, at Aberdeen International Youth Festival (AIYF). Today, I am going to recap my experience at the Free Easter Workshops AIYF put on last week, where we managed to survive doing arts and crafts with about 25 very excitable children every day!
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During the workshops which were running from Tuesday 4th to Saturday 8th April, AIYF staff and volunteers, art students from Grays School of Art who guided the workshops, and the kids and parents came to Seventeen, to have a great time learning some new arts and crafts skills!

The workshops were open to young people of all ages and it was absolutely a hub for creativity and a chance to explore their own imagination! The workshops were created alongside our See the World in Aberdeen project, so we were teaching children how to make 3D Hot Air Balloons using a variety of techniques and materials. In the end though, we learnt more from them than they did from us! Their creativity and imagination was absolutely inspiring!

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The papier-maché was probably the most successful among the youngest people. This technique consists of adding a few layers of newspapers sheets on an air-filled balloon with a mix of glue and water. When this is dry, you can add two or three more layers of tissue paper, which will give the balloon the consistency to stand on its own and a blank canvas to then be decorated however you want!

We also used other painting techniques such as print making, using many different objects such as brushes, lids, buttons, or even fingers to print onto paper and the balloons and provided these little artists opportunities to create a great variety of extremely original and personal artwork.

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Of course, the best of the workshops was getting to know and creating pieces of art with so many different people. Children, parents, volunteers… It was all like a huge family for a few days! And we are extremely satisfied with the result, and with how every child got integrated with the group and could learn with us and from each other!

But also, one of the best parts of attending the workshops was that the balloons crafted in Seventeen will be used as entries of these children to our 3D Hot Air Balloon Competition, where all of them will be displayed in a gallery… and the winners will receive some exciting prizes, we already have a couple of entries that are in the contending!

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The winner under 12 years old will be able to take five friends to Water Zorbing at Lochter Activity Centre, and the best artwork over 12 years old will get an HELICOPTER RIDE OVER ABERDEEN with HJS Helicopters!!

Nevertheless, if you or your children missed the Easter workshops, don’t worry at all, there is still time to make your own 3D Hot Air Balloon! The project closes on May 15th, and entries can be handed in with an application form that you can find here.

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Finally, I am totally thankful for this wonderful experience, sharing time with all these people in the workshops. And, after spending so much time with sooo many kids… I can only say that I will think it twice before having my own anytime soon!

I hope you enjoyed this post and that it made you want to make your own 3D Hot Air Balloon! And of course, you will be able to find more Javi’s Journals on Aberdeen International Youth Festival website and social media.

See you soon!

javier

Javi’s Journals blog is written by Javier Buron, working as a volunteer at Aberdeen International Youth Festival from February 2017.

Javier moved to Aberdeen in 2015 to complete his studies with the MSc Corporate Communication and Public Affairs at Robert Gordon University, after his BA in Journalism at the University of Valladolid, Spain. He has worked as a guitarist for six years and as a journalist in Spain before coming to Aberdeen to study.

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