‘From me to you,’ explores the journey of one little Bear’s postcard though time on the various delivery methods (horse and mail carriage, pigeon post, train, mail plane and delivery van) to it’s final delivery to his Granda Bear.
Children were invited to join the Museum Services on a postcard’s journey during our Playful Museum’s week running from Monday 15th – Saturday 20th February. Inspired by postcards within our five museum collections, as well as the great work of all our postal workers, the event was open to all children aged 1-5 years. It ran virtually with a short animation, online instruction videos, postal and downloadable resource packs.
Each day there was a craft instruction videos posted on the Ballymoney Facebook Page to help the child put together their crafts and games for the week. Their crafts were, Monday-Bear Mail hats and post-box, Tuesday- Mail bags with copies of postcards from the collection, Wednesday-postcards, Thursday- Stamps, Friday-mail plane and Saturday- matching and sequencing games.
Within each pack, children were given the resources to create their crafts as well as colouring pages, an evaluation sheet, stamped address envelope and stickers.
A major part of this project was around the creation of the child’s own portrait stamp and postcards. A stamped address envelope was provided in the resource pack for the artwork to be returned to the Museum. On return of their artwork each child was rewarded with a certificate to thank them for all their hard work and for taking part in this year’s project.
The returned artwork will feature in an exciting new exhibition both online and in venue.
The returned postcards will be delivered to care homes within the Borough as a way of connecting generations and sharing creativity. Our next step will be to provide postcard templates to the participating care homes to see if they would like to continue the journey by writing a response to the children.
Through showing initiative, imagination and making their own decisions as to how they create their postcards and stamps we covered their Personal, social and emotional development as well as The Arts.
As they worked with a range of tools, equipment and materials to create all their artwork we covered their physical development and movement as well as the Arts.
We provided writing ideas for their postcards to help with language development as they practice writing, scribbling and mark making as a way to express their thoughts.
Within the activity craft packs there were games such as matching images, colour matching stamps to postcards and a completing the sequence which as they talk through steps to do will help with their early mathematical skills.
Through the story of the postcard and the postal service presented in the animation the children learnt about the role postal workers play within the local community and will cover the topic of the world around us. Postmen and women were often a highlight of the day during lockdowns and most children will be familiar with them and the ‘thumbs up for your postie’ campaign. We hope it developed their curiosity and interest in where they live as well as in the Museum.
The animated story was created for an under 5 audience and was bright, colourful and engaging with appropriate music. It encouraged children to move and to use their imagination as the postcard travels through time and through the different methods of transport. The story encouraged them to discover something new about this familiar part of their day at home and hopefully find out a little more about the area they live in through exploring the postcards in the collection.The craft videos encouraged the use of fine motor skills, imagination and creativity, through drawing, painting, colouring, sewing, mark making, sticking, the use of stamps and stickers. We provided different methods suitable for 1-5 year olds to ensure that there was something suitable for all abilities to have a go at and indeed challenge themselves at trying.
To view photographs of the participants as well as the artwork they produced click here https://niarchive.org/explore-the-archive/?fwp_collection=playful-museums
To download the resources and watch the instruction videos click here https://niarchive.org/resources/?fwp_project=playful-museums
We gave out 78 packs to 110 children ranging from ages 1-9 years old.
Within those who requested packs we had parents, grandarents, playgroups and childminders.
“I thought it was great and really well thought out. My daughter enjoyed the activities and loves talking about Bear Mail’ ever since.”
“it was great, we had lots of fun with it. The crafts were great, it was something both my children could do an enjoy even though they are two years apart in age.”
“Great activities for range of ages”
“It’s such a great idea to get young children to work on their hands and mind too.”
“Couldn’t improve, very well organised & lots of fun!”
“The children really enjoyed making all the crats, colouring and games. It got them creative by making things, using paint, glue and getting messy. It also helped with their hand & eye coordination by threading mail bag.”
“The videos each morning were brilliant-very useful. Packs were excellent, they had everything that we needed for each day! Super job and very much appreciated.”
“It was brilliant- the kids really enjoyed it.”
Animation by Natalie H Cole.