The Rainbow Flower is a training tool that can be used in workshops that focus on children’s participation in health education. The Rainbow Flower contains seven concepts that distinguishes a participatory model from a ‘traditional health education model’. It is specially designed to be used with children (defined here as children under 10 years) and young adolescents (between 10 and 14 years).
The 7 concepts of The Rainbow Flower are:
- The roles of the children – ROLES
- The three stages of a project – WHEELS
- The skills that children will develop – SKILLS
- The words that guide the spirit with which the activities will be done – WORDS
- The places that the learning and sharing will happen – PLACES
- The values that are at the heart of this type of activity – VALUES
- The connections that ensure healthy habits are effective and long-lasting – CONNECTIONS
Within each if the 7 concepts, there are 3 key ideas to remember:
- That in this work children dance between 3 ROLES of learner, leader and activists.
- That the 3 learning WHEELS include: understanding, taking action and reflecting on what has been done.
- That children develop and improve the 3 key SKILLS of listening, speaking and planning.
- That all activities are important, relevant and fun!
- That the activities move from PLACES where smaller groups of children learn like a club or a class and to larger groups such as entire schools, and then on to the home and community. The activities will therefore reach ALL children.
- That all involved VALUE working together with originality and creativity with a sense of community and with clarity of purpose and shared understanding.
- That it’s not enough for children just to know something! Real and lasting changes happen when connections are made between what they know – head what they do – body and what we feel – heart.
How to Use the Rainbow Flower
In our training workshops each of the 7 concepts are introduced separately using a variety of methods including discussions, games, movement and choral speaking. The challenges of implementing this new approach are tackled one by one.
After the seven sessions, the get combined together into one unified piece, which participants love. Then the participants work in pairs as they cut out and assemble a craft version the Rainbow Flower, reinforcing their leaning. The Rainbow Flowers made by the participants are then displayed in the workshop and taken away by the participants at the end.
Click here to watch a 15-minute video with Clare Hanbury explaining the Rainbow Flower.
Get in touch on firstname.lastname@example.org if you want more detail on our training or any other aspect of our work. Please share the link to the Children for Health website with anyone you know who is interested in health education, participatory teaching methods and innovative training and monitoring methods.
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