The church provided twenty trees to be decorated by a variety of community groups, and thanks to Taika’s nana Raewyn (one of the organisers), we were lucky enough to be asked to decorate one.
The purpose of the Christmas tree display is to showcase some of the community groups in Whangarei. When we were deciding what style to decorate our tree, we felt this would be a wonderful opportunity to create a Christmas display that highlighted the philosophy of our kindergarten.
“At Mairtown Kindergarten we believe in providing opportunities for children to learn to love and connect with nature. We feel this enables children to become motivated to care for and to develop respect for our community, our natural world and for all living things” (Alford, 2014).
The decorations on our tree were all created and designed by our tamariki, using a combination of natural, recycled and up-cycled materials including, twig stars, sliced oranges (that are fed to hungry birds when taken down), sparkly ‘bomby knockers’, glitter dipped feathers and peg fairies. Our children are wonderfully clever and just love opportunities to work with resources in creative and imaginative ways.
“Creativity is not the finding of a thing, but the making of something out of it after it is found.” James Russell Lowell
When the decorations were complete Susie, Christine, Zair and my-self went down the road to dress our beautiful tree, it looks so stunning, and although there are 19 other attractively decorated trees in the church, we all agreed that our children’s work was truly the most wonderful!
On December 4th, our kindergarten whānau took a hikoi to view the Festival of Christmas trees. It was a beautiful sunny day to take a short stroll up Kamo Road with friends and family.
At St John’s Golden church we were welcomed in by Raewyn and Beryl and invited into view the display. The church looked wonderful with such an array of design, style, colour and lights. Raewyn had also prepared a delicious snack of shortbread for the tamariki, and in acknowledgement of their time and care the children gifted two beautifully sung Christmas carols in return.
One idea of community denotes ‘common unity’, or participating in a common purpose. Having the opportunity to contribute to the beautiful display in the St John’s Golden church has been a real treat for our tamariki and whānau. Creating decorations collaboratively has enriched our children’s learning; however I believe the most important feature of this story is the opportunity for our tamariki to share magic and wonderment with others in community. The true joy of the Christmas season is the love and memories shared with our family and friends.
Fill your life with experiences, not things. Have stories to tell, not stuff to show.
Meri Kirihimete ki a koe me te whānau – Merry Christmas to you and your familyKim Townsend