National Festival of Making for the Under 5’s

The National Festival of Making is packed with events for all ages including a variety of events aimed at the under 5’s and their families. From interactive music-making to sensory installations and craft sessions, the festival provides a diverse and engaging experience for young children. 

Suspended from various structures and shapes, ‘Walking Down the Street Gamelan sees an unconventional ensemble of drums, guitars, chimes, and marimbas await young musicians. What sets this musical extravaganza apart is the integration of everyday objects including computer keyboards, flasks, draining racks, and colanders, adding an element of surprise and innovation to the compositions. Led by skilled musicians, the children take the lead, exploring their creativity through improvisation.  

A standout event designed for early years children is the captivating “North Light” play installation, a new commission as part of the festivals ‘Art in Manufacturing’ which sees a collaboration between artists and play specialists Stephanie Jefferies, Sarah Marsh, and Herbert Parkinson, a John Lewis Textile factory. Together they are combining sensory memories of sound, touch and smell which have been collected from partners of the factory to delve into the 70-year history of the people that have worked there and will be woven into a playful installation for families to explore together. Audiences will be invited to follow the flow of the factory floor, searching for the ever-present heartbeat of the looms, slowing down to interact with touchable objects, wearable pieces and soft sculpture. 

Children, accompanied by adults can “Create their Own Hand Fan” with Nudrat Alexander Mughal. Here the artist will teach the children to combine paper, wooden sticks and decorative trimming to create their own fan inspired by the Pankha, a traditional hand fan used in South Asia. This culturally inspired activity not only encourages artistic exploration but also offers an opportunity to learn about different traditions and cultures. 

The Bureau Centre for the Arts presents their “Shared Sounds” Early Years programme, featuring collaborative sessions led by talented musicians and artists. These sessions empower children to explore the magic of musical instruments, engage in singing and storytelling, and unleash their creativity through art and craft activities. With drop-in sessions available throughout the day, families can immerse themselves in a display of creative experiences tailored specially for early years children. 

For more information about Early years events see here  

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