Playful Hands-on Crafting for Personal Growth and Communal Well-being

Abstract

Crafts education in Finland has recently been exposed to considerable challenges, on both the theoretical and practical levels. The emphasis is shifting to personal expression and communal arts and crafts practices are being adapted to solidify social and cultural participation. Learning research shows us how inner motivation and multilevel objectives in comfortable learning environments induce stable and generalizable learning results. In addition, collaborative ways of working make data processing more open and turn learning into a shared effort. On the other hand, playful learning and dramatic methods offer productive ways of examining life situations in an active and empathetic way. When using concrete materials in functional activities, deep learning is stimulated by offering experiential forums for learning. As well, an intentionally good-humored atmosphere facilitates success. Community art projects offer a platform for participants to generate well-being through art and craft activities combining personal expression with dialogue between actors. A person’s activity cycles proceed spontaneously without questions of right and wrong, and in a dialogic and inclusive manner. The storyline of this presentation is about building up communal workshops designed under the pedagogical guidelines to be described and using hands-on activities involving materials. Specific effort was put on playful ideas and easy-going pursuits. Certain piloted hands-on workshops will be exhibited as case studies.

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