MAKE SPINNING A YARN
It’s UK Wool Week, a celebration of the planet-friendly, warm, versatile material! Find more about it here.
Why not celebrate by doing some yarn-based crafts? Knitting with your family is fun and rewarding, or get political with your needles!
Perhaps start at the beginning and with the most basic; find some sheep’s wool on a walk and make a mini drop spindle to turn it into thread. Now to turn that into something more beautiful. This branch loom not only teaches kids the art of weaving, but also makes a lovely, cosy decoration when it’s finished. We adore all of Sew Yeah’s projects, but with Hallowe’en on the horizon, why not start making some skull pompoms early? Find lots more inspiring wool craft ideas here
EVENT SHARPEN UP
Every year, October’s The Big Draw festival brings hundreds of events to families across the country, encouraging everyone to sharpen up their pencils and get sketching for a whole month. Find our pick of the best events here. This year, the theme is Make The Change – exploring the relationship between people and our living environments – so expect lots of eco activism-themed classes and workshops being held at galleries, museums and public spaces across the country. Perhaps you’ll contribute to a huge communal drawing, learn how to sketch with a real-life illustrator, or try your hand at street art? Ditchling Museum of Art and Craft have a particularly dynamic series of events while Bideford’s quayside sketching day sounds dreamy More here
EVENT BRANCHING OUT
October is Black History Month. We’ve curated a list of our favourite books to inspire you and your kids to learn more about the culture and achievements of people of black and ethnic minority heritage, while The Guardian has more suggestions, and explores ten black history events that should be taught to every pupil. Find different perspectives on the event; young people discuss their feelings about Black History Month. Or read Dana Williams’ piece for The Green Parent about how to talk about race at home.
EVENT FIND YOUR FUN
The Fun Palaces campaign was dreamt up in the ‘60s by theatre director Joan Littlewood, to create a community-based ‘laboratory of fun’, places for people of all ages and backgrounds to get creative with art and science and create ‘tiny revolutions’. This weekend, you’ll find community-led events taking place across the country, from laughter yoga, coding to archaeology and circus workshops, in addition to 1000 tiny fun palaces; hyper-local gatherings that might involve a seed swap, a drumming lesson form a balcony window or pavement chalking. There are hundreds of events taking place across the country in libraries, arts centres and cinemas; find one near you! We particularly like the sound of the National Maritime Museum’s community takeover that includes making a washing line of memories and workshops to create stories about time-travelling tourists
EVENT STRONGER TOGETHER
Let light and community carry you into autumn. Newham Unlocked is a festival of free events, performances and workshops produced in partnership with local arts organisations. This year’s theme is unity. Head to Beckton for street food and shows featuring giant illuminated creatures, meet social documentary photographer Sylvie Belbouab, be transported by free outdoor dance, music and street arts in Rathbone Market, or join a colourful lantern parade in Stratford Park.
WHAT WE’RE READING ‘All parents snap at their children’: How to apologise to them “The most important thing is what happens after you snap at your children, said all four of the experts I asked. Here’s their advice for coming back from saying things you regret, how to empathise with your children and how to cut down on snapping when possible.” Read more here
WHAT WE’RE WATCHING TED Talks for Black History Month From the urgency of intersectionality to Chimamanda Adichie’s seminal The Danger of a Single Story, find a TED talk to inspire Black History Month debate here. Don’t miss Casey Gerald’s incredible lecture on embracing your strange, raw magic! Watch here