CREATING FLOWER POWER PRAYER FLAGS AT THE GARDEN WITH JULIE IRELAND
Last week, 13 CHP students and Jen, Elaine and Michael rode the city bus to the community gardens. We were going to meet Julie Ireland, local quilting artist, at her garden plot where she grows flowers and vegetables for dyeing fabric. Julie invited the children to come into her garden and pick yellow cosmos, bright orange marigolds, deep red henna leaves and chartreuse marigold leaves. We then took the flowers and arranged them on prayer flags that Julie had cut and treated with alum to help preserve the colors. We folded the flags in half, put a piece of paper on top and pounded on the flowers inside with rocks to release the colors onto the fabric.
It was a fun and appropriate activity for our 2.5-5 year olds! Pounding rocks is organizing to the brain and gives instant results.
The images were spectacular! The colors were vivid and some prints showed the entire outline of the flowers and the veins in the leaves!
The flags were taken back to school where each child ironed their own flag with Jen to preserve the colors.
The flags were hung in the classroom in honor of the fall harvest.
We also visited our garden plot. Children discovered edible nasturtium flowers, lettuces, giant squash, tomatillos, beans, Italian parsley, cilantro, basil, and chard. We gathered some lettuce and tomatoes for school snack and picked parsley, the inspiration for our next cooking class, white bean hummus. Children also helped knock dirt off the roots of a rudbeckia that we pulled out of the garden a few days before.
We thanked Julie for a wonderful time and our Flower Power Flags!
Visit Julie’s beautiful website at
Stayed tuned for our next adventure!