Autumn Leaves

This October, a team of us had the wonderful opportunity to run Prayer Spaces in Schools at our local junior school.

“Prayer Spaces in Schools enable children and young people, of all faiths and none, to explore these life questions, spirituality and faith in a safe, creative and interactive way.” (www.prayerspacesinschools.com/about-us)

We were given the library, a large open space fairly central to the school     , to transform into 6 different prayer stations for students and teachers to explore. The stations we chose focused upon a range of different themes:

Autumn Leaves

Autumn Leaves focused upon the changes students were experiencing or anticipating and how this made them feel. They could write these thoughts or prayers and attach them to our tree. Many of the responses we saw highlighted the difficulties of living with separated parents, the changes caused by the loss of a loved one and a fear of approaching changes.

mirrors

Mirrors allowed students to explore their own self-identity, focusing upon building positive body image. This was an interesting prayer station that allowed students to look at their own appearance and think about how they felt about it.

Cardboard Home

 

Cardboard Home gave students the opportunity to sit inside a cardboard box and think about the many people around the world who live in cardboard boxes or similar. They were then encouraged to write their thoughts and feelings upon the boxes.

 

Pray for the World

Pray for the World allowed students to pray and think about different people and situations around the world that they knew of. They could then stick these upon a large map using post-it notes. Many students picked our friends and family living all across the world and prayed or thought about them. Many topical issues were also highlighted: the hurricanes and destruction across Florida and Central America as well as tensions between America and Korea or Russia.

 

Big QuestionsBig Questions asked students to consider what question they would like to ask God if they could. A huge range of very interesting and thoughtful questions were asked within this prayer space.

I’m going to take a much deeper look at the Cardboard Home and Big Questions spaces as these were the ones that Jenny and I led and we think many of the comments left give us lots more to reflect upon.

Cardboard Home

Be Still provided a space, either inside a small pop-up tent or on beanbags for students to be quietly reflective or praying. This was a very popular station with many students spending lots of time sat inside the tent either in silence or praying together.

Prayer Spaces in Schools was a wonderful opportunity to see children interacting with God in a whole range of different, creative, interactive ways and it was wonderful to read many of their thoughtful, inspiring and thought-provoking reactions to the prayer stations we created. Although many of the students had prayed before, lots of them told us that they had expected the prayer spaces to be really boring and were pleasantly surprised to enjoy them!

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