Flower Pounding Workshops for Schools
Significant Seams uses the “Flower Pounding” textile treatment to open young minds to science, nature, dyeing and textile craft… and the issues of climate change and environmental conservation. We offer a topical lesson followed by activity-based learning to supplement schools curriculum.
There is a simple way to extract natural dyes from plants, direct to fabric, and to capture the shape, structure and integral elements of the plant while doing it. This method is quite awe-inspiring to witnesses and produces very special bespoke fabrics.
The process of “Flower Pounding” is accessible and captivating for students from teenagers to very young children, and can be associated with lessons ranging from:
- understanding the senses (touch, smells, sound, and sight are all involved, and depending on the plants used, taste too)
- history and pre-history (extracting colours into dyes and paints in order to use them to shape our world is a powerful theme – from cave paintings to the clothes we wear today)
- the biology of plants (pounding reveals the inner structure)
- chemistry (fabric is pre-treated with a mordant, an element that bonds to the colour molecules in the plant)
Significant Seams works with your class for half a school day. We deliver a roughly half hour introductory lesson – associated with the theme that supports your curriculum – and then engage the class in making their bespoke fabric. The class will have a shared art fabric at the end of the day.
We pre-treat the fabric needed. When school grounds and weather permits, we gather plant materials from your environment with the students. We can bring plant material as well. We bring rubber mallets, safety goggles, and other needed materials. Typically we work with 30 children over 2.5-3 hours, and bring two-three facilitators (all DBS checked). We would expect to be at your school for three hours, allowing for prep and tidying up.
From your school, we will need:
- space where we can make some noise
- a key contact, and ideally, helpers known to the children
- clarity as to the number of children participating
We look forward to working with you to design the programme for your school.
At Thorpe Hall School, we delivered inset content for teachers and used flower pounding with other activities to create a whole school quilt aligned to the Prevent curriculum. Please ask for a tailored quote for such a project