I am amazed at the meaningful insights and energy children add to the REVEALED project. I was inspired to bring this project to 4th, 5th and 9th grade classes, and found new layers of excitement to my work on REVEALED that only children could generate. If you are interested in having a REVEALED children’s workshop as part of your art or writing curriculum, here is what you can expect in a two session program:
Initially I facilitate a discussion among the students as to what objects they believe represent who they are, what they believe in, and what is important to them--objects that would fit in their REVEALED box. I link this to the idea of self concept because that is the core of the REVEALED project. They suggest things like baseballs, footballs, flying pigs, and an occasional family photo. I encourage each student to contribute an idea as to generate confidence, openness and acceptance of disclosure. I ask them to use both words and visuals so as to create an understanding that what we see is a language as much as what we say.
At the close of the first session, the question is asked again, “what would you put in your REVEALED box?” As a result of the process of disclosure, the discussion of visual and verbal language, and reflection throughout their earlier discussion on who they are and what they believe in, their answers change. Sometimes the objects they’d choose are radically different, sometimes the objects are the same but their articulation as to why they should be included are different, and sometimes just because they hit it “right” the first time, they feel pride in having gotten “it” from the start! But almost always there is greater depth and meaningfulness in their answer at the end of session one. They leave session one with an empty box and exciting informed ideas on how they will fill it.
Between Sessions One and Two, students artfully and thoughtfully prepare their box and themselves for a portrait. They also are thinking about how they will write a brief essay (age appropriate length) to support the visual story they have created in the box.
At session Two: I photograph each student individually in addition we discuss their box and discoveries from the process. The essay is attached and presented with the portrait ultimately. We end Session Two with a final reflective discussion about not only the box and its contents, but also how it feels to complete the portrait and box together and what they’ve learned about themselves. It is possible to split the second session into two sessions that are shorter, but same content. In addition create a 3rd session with final discuss and presentation of the prints.
The work product for the student is both the box and the essay, but I give them the signed fine-art print of their portrait, and its inclusion in the REVEALED project.
Instructional objectives can include improved writing skills, specifically autobiographical writing, critical thinking skills, specifically formation and articulation of self concept, and exposure to design principles, visual language concepts, presentational skills and general art skill development.
Similar to REVEALED Class, the REVEALED Workshop is a one or two session experience that results in greater awareness of self, a visual and verbal articulation of your own spirituality and self, as well as connections to others in search of answers to questions of transformation and emotional spiritual discovery. REVEALED Workshop is the living organic counterpart to REVEALED. If you are interested in having a REVEALED workshop in your church, community group or business here is what you can expect in a 1-2 session(s) program: Initially I facilitate a multi-media discussion among the participants as to what they define as spirituality, their essence and what they believe in. How they connect to their spirituality in their everyday lives and what objects they believe represent who they are and what they believe in. This open discussion among the participants builds trust, acceptance and understanding. I find that each participant’s work and self discovery is also another's self discovery. I then ask them to identify objects that symbolize their spirituality & belief system and ask them to bring them to the next session. During a two week period until the next session, they plan the design of their box display--they are given their own box to decorate and keep when this project is completed. They return with the box, prepared for a portrait. At the second session, I photograph each participant with their REVEALED box and we discuss the process. A few weeks later fine-art prints are presented to the workshop participants A third session is always a wonderful way to discuss what people learned about themselves and others during this process.