Getting Started

We are sure you are keen to get started, however, you may be wondering where to start or what to do!  Please find some simple steps below to get you started:

Step One
Learn how to use the Kit

  • Read pages 6 and 7 in the activities handbook.  This will give you information and guidance on process and how the kit works best.  

Remember you can switch and change topics based on the time of year and situation.  Use the activity handbook as your guide and work it into your environment and current activity programme. 

Step Two
Plan and promote your 'Introductory Session'  

  • Review pages 9 - 11 in the activity handbook - This will help you plan, prepare and hold your very first session.  
  • Head to the 'Introductory' page on this website for ideas and downloads. (you can click the 'next' button at the bottom of this page. 

Step Three
Advertise your session

You can use the poster below or you can design and use your own.  

Come And Join Us Poster

Please also find below some helpful tips from facilitators that have used the kits frequently: 

For top tips from facilitators who have used our kits…pdf

For tips on communicating with people with demantia, from the Dementia Services Development Centre…  pdf

Other Useful Hints and Tips

Building confidence

If you sense participants are a bit nervous about getting into creativity, then here's a few tips to help them relax and gain confidence.

  •  Start with a doodle - getting people in to making marks and experimenting with different papers, colours and markers
  •  Write and decorate their name.   This is a chance to choose colours and styles and talk about what their name means to  them.  They could also decorate with their favourite flower or garden item.
  •  Start with a collage - just lingering over magazines and tearing out images and phrases that are meaningful is a great way to introduce a creative activity.  
  • Dots, dashes and lines exercises to have fun - dots that wander, dashes that dance and lines that laugh!
  • Work as a team or group and set 'jobs' if possible.   
  • A job well done - Always celebrate the work done in each session

Websites:

There are also some websites that would be really useful to take a look at either before you start or when planning gardening activity sessions.  They all have great information and ideas for your activity sessions:

THRIVE

Two free publications Gardening togetherand Gardening memoriesare both helpful for people with dementia, with clear instructions for many gardening jobs. Both are useful for Activity Session 1. 

  

TRELLIS SCOTLAND

Trellis Scotland is the place for information about therapeutic gardening, the art of using gardening to help people take care of their physical, emotional and social wellbeing. They support a network of over 200 therapeutic gardening projects in Scotland so they can share skills, good practice and get you connected. Trellis runs training workshops and an information service, and can visit you to give help and advice.

 

RSPB

The RSPB is the countrys largest nature conservation charity, inspiring everyone to give nature a home and take responsibility to protect birds and the environment.

 

 PINTEREST

The visual bookmarking tool that helps you discover and save creative ideas. We recommend signing up for Pinterest so that you can access many of their inspirational ideas.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Introductory Session

Planning your first introductory session is so exciting and there is so much that can be done.  Below are some ideas, steps and useful links to help and inspire you:

Step One:

Review pages 10 - 11 of the activity handbook

Step Two:

Decide on your location and activity then advertise the event    COME AND JOIN US POSTER

Step Three:

Make sure you collect, print or have ordered all materials needed for the introductory activity.

Step Four:

As shown in the handbook - Follow the instructions to make the activity an event.  Always start with the tablecloth and a cuppa! Conversations will start to flow - use the activity handbook to guide you.

The Tablecloth 

It may be that your first few meetings are just about the tablecloth, unfolding, spreading out and then exploring images.  A cup of tea or coffee always help people relax. That may be enough; just talking together about what comes up for people. Soon, people will respond to the sight of the tablecloth, it will become a cue or signpost, creating expectation and a positive mood. Some people may take responsibility for the unfolding and folding away at the end of the time together.

One of our Artlink artists Christine Hilditch drew and painted the images.

IMG_5879.jpg

IDEAS AND USEFUL LINKS
Ideas:

  • Sensory: gather aromatic flowers and plants
  • Music - Playlist of garden themed music
  • Discussion - Use Tablecloth
  • Make participants individual folders for future work
  • Plant a bulb - see handbook
  • Discuss goals that would like to be achieved from the Creating Conversations project
  • Name the group or project
  • Have gardening magazines at hand for ideas if needed
  • Read poetry or ask the group to make up a poem around today's activity.  Each participant can make up a sentence and them the next person can add on to it. This tends to be a fun and interactive approach. 
  • Discuss and share opinions on topics and activities
  • Celebrate - a job well done

Poetry On Gardening

https://jamarattigan.com/2014/03/21/friday-feast-emily-dickinsons-poetry-of-flowers/

http://poetry.about.com/od/ourpoemcollections/a/Garden-Poems.htm

http://allpoetry.com/poems/about/Garden

Playlists Of Garden Themed Music

http://gardenerscorner.co.uk/forum/threads/songs-about-gardening.51779/

https://www.theguardian.com/music/musicblog/2011/nov/17/readers-recommend-songs-gardens

http://www.playlistresearch.com/themes/nature/flower.htm

http://www.thisgardenisillegal.com/2009/04/my-favorite-gardening-songs.html

 

Songs You May Wish To Source

“Don’t sit under the apple tree”, by Glen Miller Orchestra

 “I’ll be with you in Apple Blossom Time”, by the Andrew Sisters

“A white sport’s coat and a pink carnation” by Marty Robbins

 “My love is like a Red, Red Rose”, words by Robert Burns

 

Mosaics

Mosaics catalogue to order tiles - www.mosaicheaven.co.uk

Here artist, Jaine Marriott, outlines how to create garden mosaics…pdf

jainemarriottmosaics.co.uk

Topic 1: Jobs for Today and The Garden Shed

IMG_1038.jpg

IDEAS AND TIPS:

Step One:

Review pages 12 - 14 of the activity handbook.  
There are great hints and tips in the handbook.
There is also a To Do area to help you plan and prepare. 

Prepare your activity.  Speak to other members of staff to get them involved. 

Step Two:

Advertise the event    COME AND JOIN US POSTER

Step Three:

Make sure you have collected, printed or have ordered all materials needed for the activities.

Step Four:

As shown in the handbook - Follow the instructions to make the activity an event and use the activity handbook to guide you.

IDEAS AND TIPS:

“Garden Memories” the useful publication that is downloadable from the Thrive website, specifically look at chapter 7 for this topic.

Use the Garden Shed template below to draw or cut out pictures from magazines and glue them on to make their shed complete

A Garden Calendar can be downloaded as a PDF. The booklet also has very clear instructions on many of the seasonal jobs that would be appropriate as an Activity.

http://www.thrive.org.uk/products/publications/dementia-and-older-people.aspx

Spring

  • Spring Seasonal Jobs

http://www.thrive.org.uk/products/publications/dementia-and-older-people.aspx

  • Putting Up Nesting Boxes

http://www.bbc.co.uk/breathingplaces/nest_box/

Summer

  • Making Hanging Baskets 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/gardening/basics/techniques/plant_hangingbasket1.shtml

  • Pressing Flowers

 http://www.doityourself.com/stry/guidepressingflowers#b

Autumn

  • Ideas For Crafting With Leaves

http://uk.pinterest.com/ms_art/kid-art-trees-leaves-fall/

  • Printing With Leaves

http://www.pinterest.com/explore/leaf-prints/

http://www.wikihow.com/Make-Leaf-Prints

  • Making Insect Hotels

http://uk.pinterest.com/vanshel400/insect-hotels/

Winter

  • Making A Terrarium

http://www.realsimple.com/home-organizing/gardening/indoor/how-make-terrarium 

  • Making Fat Balls

http://www.instructables.com/id/How-to-make-fat-ball-bird-feeders/?ALLSTEPS

  • Natural Christmas Wreaths

 http://uk.pinterest.com/maryjotruax/christmas-wreaths/

  • Seed Mosaics

http://uk.pinterest.com/chemi7/seed-and-bean-fun/

Topic 2: Flowers

IMG_6020.jpg

IDEAS AND TIPS:

Step One:

Review pages 15 - 16 of the activity handbook.  
There are great hints and tips in the handbook.
Prepare your activity.  Speak to other members of staff to get them involved. 

Step Two:

Advertise the event    COME AND JOIN US POSTER

Step Three:

Make sure you have collected, printed or have ordered all materials needed for the activities.

Step Four:

As shown in the handbook - Follow the instructions to make the activity an event and use the activity handbook to guide you.

IDEAS AND TIPS:

  • Flower arranging
  • Drawing flowers
  • Decoration making
  • Painting
  • Cut out of magazines and make a flower collage
  • Felting Flowers

http://uk.pinterest.com/racheltp/fabric-felt-flowers-to-make/

  • Pressing and Preserving Flowers

http://www.doityourself.com/stry/guidepressingflowers#b

  • Preserved Gardens

 http://www.preservedgardens.com

  • Printing with flowers

 http://growcreative.blogspot.co.uk/2013/04/printing-with-flowers.html

  • Crafts with Lavender

 http://fairegarden.wordpress.com/2010/06/04/how-to-make-lavender-wands/    These can be complicated to make but participants might enjoy rubbing and sorting the seeds whilst you make the wands.

http://uk.pinterest.com/sunshinelavfarm/lavender-crafts/

  • Wet into Wet

http://www.artistsandillustrators.co.uk/how-to/watercolour/754/how-to-perfect-wet-in-wet-watercolour

Topic 3: Birds, Animals and Insects in the Garden

IDEAS AND TIPS:

Step One:

Review pages 17 - 18 of the activity handbook.  
Prepare your activity - There are great hints and tips and preparation ideas in the handbook. 
Speak to other members of staff to get them involved. 

Step Two:

Advertise the event    COME AND JOIN US POSTER

Step Three:

Make sure you have collected, printed or have ordered all materials needed for the activities.

Step Four:

As shown in the handbook - Follow the instructions to make the activity an event and use the activity handbook to guide you.

IDEAS AND TIPS:

  • RSPB

www.rspb.org.uk

  • Attracting Wildlife Into The Garden

http://www.bbc.co.uk/nature/22720319

  • Making Bird Feeders

http://thediydreamer.com/inspiration/20-unique-bird-feeders/

  • Making Bird Tables

http://www.rspb.org.uk/advice/helpingbirds/feeding/birdtables/making.aspx

  • Making Felt Birds

http://www.lavendersbluedesigns.com/diy-fabric-bird-tutorial-free-printable/

or look up felt birds on Pinterest.

Storytelling:

  • Stories About Wildlife

www.taleswithmorals.com

https://www.rspb.org.uk/discoverandenjoynature/families/children/earlyyears/stories/

 

Poetry that can be used for this topic:

http://www.poetrysoup.com/poems/wildlife

http://www.wildlifeservices.co.uk/poems.html

http://www.poetseers.org/themes/poems-about-birds/index.html

Topic 4: The Special Garden

IDEAS AND TIPS:

Step One:

Review pages 19 - 21 of the activity handbook.  
Prepare your activity - There are great hints and tips and preparation ideas in the handbook. 
Speak to other members of staff to get them involved. 

Step Two:

Advertise the event    COME AND JOIN US POSTER

Step Three:

Make sure you have collected, printed or have ordered all materials needed for the activities.

Step Four:

As shown in the handbook - Follow the instructions to make the activity an event and use the activity handbook to guide you.

IDEAS AND TIPS:

  • Use the Discussion Cards and instructions to play games or spark conversation
  • Listen to music
  • Finish with a poem
  • Discuss outings or their favourite garden
  • Draw or Paint their special garden
  • Discuss what would be in their special garden
  • Use magazines to look for special gardens or cut out and make a collage of their special garden
  • Word Search On A Gardening Theme

http://www.printactivities.com/Word_Search_Puzzles/Gardening-Word-Search.html#.V2Fmq6tllz8

 

Poetry that can be used for this topic:

http://poetry.about.com/od/poemsbytitled/l/blebbrowningdesertedgarden.htm

http://poetry.about.com/od/20thcenturypoets/p/frost.htm

http://www.familyfriendpoems.com/poems/nature/garden/

  • Quotes, jokes and poetry

http://www.no-dig-vegetablegarden.com/gardening-jokes-gardening-quotes-garden-poems.html

 

Topic 5: The Sensory Garden

IDEAS AND TIPS:

Step One:

Review pages 22 - 24 of the activity handbook.  
Prepare your activity - There are great hints and tips and preparation ideas in the handbook. 
Speak to other members of staff to get them involved. 

Step Two:

Advertise the event    COME AND JOIN US POSTER

Step Three:

Make sure you have collected, printed or have ordered all materials needed for the activities.

Step Four:

As shown in the handbook - Follow the instructions to make the activity an event and use the activity handbook to guide you.

IDEAS AND TIPS:

  • Use the Discussion Cards and instructions to play games or spark conversation
  • Listen to music
  • Read or make up poem
  • Discuss possible outings 
  • Printing with vegetables
  • Make wind chimes
  • Growing fragrant flowers
  • Smell, feel, rub leaves, seeds and flowers
  • Make your own bunting
  • Word Search On A Gardening Theme

IDEAS AND TIPS:

Printing from Vegetables

http://www.pinterest.com/happy2012/potato-printing/

Growing Fragrant Flowers

http://www.organicgardening.com/learn-and-grow/fragrant-flowers

Making Pot Pourri

http://pioneerthinking.com/crafts/making-your-own-potpourri#more-222

Lavender Crafts

http://www.homemade-gifts-made-easy.com/lavender-crafts.html

Bunting

https://uk.pinterest.com/pininterest13/bunting-ideas/

https://uk.pinterest.com/explore/vintage-bunting/

Wind Chimes

http://uk.pinterest.com/crazypi/wind-chimes/

 

Music to listen to:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TzXnSZF_pJs

http://www.classicalmpr.org/story/2012/05/23/playlist-for-gardening

https://shop.abc.net.au/products/the-perfect-gardener-cd to make

 

Music With Wind Chimes And Rain

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p55uyEztZ7w

 

Poetry that can be used in this topic:

http://www.familyfriendpoems.com/poem/article-5-senses-in-poetry

Topic 6: An Outing

IDEAS AND TIPS:

Step One:

Review pages 25 - 26 of the activity handbook.  
Prepare your activity - There are great hints and tips and preparation ideas in the handbook. 
Speak to other members of staff to get them involved. 

Step Two:

Plan your outing and advertise the event    COME AND JOIN US POSTER

Step Three:

Make sure you have all materials needed: Cameras, mobile devices, tablecloth etc - Please see the handbook for full list and ideas.

Step Four:

As shown in the handbook - Follow the instructions to make the activity an event and use the activity handbook to guide you.

IDEAS OF PLACES TO VISIT:

  • Your local garden centre
  • Local parks and community gardens
  • Museums and galleries
  • Create and outdoor scene inside if you cannot get out

IDEAS AND TIPS:

  • Look at the plants and flowers
  • Take bags with you to collect interesting items your group see or find
  • Ring galleries and museums to see if they have an outreach service
  • Use activity cards and tablecloth
  • Take paper and pencils - draw or discuss scenery.  
  • Write down findings or ideas for future activities.

Find your local garden centres:

http://www.gardencenterfinder.co.uk/

Find your local gallaries:

http://www.thelocalartscene.com/

Find your local museums:

http://www.britainsfinest.co.uk/museums/search_results.cfm/searchclasscode/450

Find your local parks:

https://www.gov.uk/find-your-local-park

Find your local community gardens:

https://www.rhs.org.uk/communities/Find-a-group-search-form

Topic 7: The Working Garden

IDEAS AND TIPS:

Step One:

Review pages 27 - 28 of the activity handbook.  
Prepare your activity - There are great hints and tips and preparation ideas in the handbook. 
Speak to other members of staff to get them involved. 

Step Two:

Plan and advertise the event    COME AND JOIN US POSTER

Step Three:

Make sure you have all materials needed: Please see the handbook for full list and ideas.

Step Four:

As shown in the handbook - Follow the instructions to make the activity an event and use the activity handbook to guide you.

IDEAS AND TIPS:

  • Print off the Washing Line template and use as a topic of conversation and activity
  • Use the discussion cards
  • Watch the DVD "The Steamie" can be viewed and discussed 
  • Design their own garden
  • Washing day and washing lines
  • Find pictures of sculptures in magazines - cut out and make a collage
  • Garden Hangings
  • Peg Dolls
  • Indoor Gardens
  • Read stories about working gardens
  • Read, discuss or make up poems about working gardens and garden jobs

IDEAS AND TIPS:

Garden Sculptures

http://www.thesculpturewebsite.co.uk

Garden Hangings

 http://www.home2garden.co.uk

Peg Dolls

http://uk.pinterest.com/gottabesmee/peg-dolls/

Indoor Gardens

http://www.woohome.com/diy-2/26-mini-indoor-garden-ideas-to-green-your-home

Information on gardening and what to do when

http://www.aneverydaystory.com/2015/01/22/year-kitchen-garden/

Stories to read in this topic:

http://www.nationalgardenmonth.org/index.php?page=story_home

http://www.erniesworld.com/gardening-story.html

 

Poems about gardens:

http://www.poetseers.org/poem-of-the-day-archive/poems-about-gardens/

 

Topic 8: Celebrating Gardening

 

IDEAS AND TIPS:

Step One:

Review pages 29 - 30 of the activity handbook.  
Prepare your activity - There are great hints and tips and preparation ideas in the handbook. 
Speak to other members of staff to get them involved. 

Step Two:

Plan and advertise the event    COME AND JOIN US POSTER

Step Three:

Make sure you have all materials needed: Please see the handbook for full list and ideas.

Step Four:

As shown in the handbook - Follow the instructions to make the activity an event and use the activity handbook to guide you.

IDEAS AND TIPS:

  • Review and discuss flowers or products grown throughout the project - bring any photos taken throughout the project or any artwork
  • Bring a selection of fruit and vegetables to smell, touch and draw
  • Make some food or a sweet with products grown
  • Have a picnic outside
  • Plan a special occasion or event in the garden 

Book Binding Projects

https://uk.pinterest.com/jpeloveseoy/book-binding-paper-projects/

 

Mosaics

www.mosaicheaven.co.uk

jainemarriottmosaics.co.uk