November 15, 2017

"Volunteering gives me a sense of empowerment and joy in creating change..": Pass the Crayon volunteer, Babi Paul, explains what volunteering means to her, and why EVERYBODY should do it!

I have always been very fond of children, and I have to gather a lot of strength and courage to not break down when I think about what those little innocent faces have been through at such a young age. 

But No. To my surprise, from the moment I went to my first Pass the Crayon art workshop (at the refugee shelter in Spandau), there wasn’t a second when I wasn't smiling, for these children were full of life and happiness. 

What I’ve learnt is that each child is different: the more we pay attention to the art that they're developing, the more we can learn about the kind of life they’ve experienced before reaching Europe. 

"What I’ve learnt is that each child is different: the more we pay attention to the art that they're developing, the more we can learn about the kind of life they’ve ex...

November 12, 2017

Tree House? Sky Scraper? Circular curved thingy? The kids imagined some crazy structures in this weeks Architectural Design Workshop at the Pankow refugee shelter.

At Pass the Crayon we are always encouraging the children to let their imaginations run wild and explore the limits of their creativity (Clue: there are no limits!). This week we wanted to apply this technique to a new area: Architecture.

The aim of this workshop, hosted by volunteers Jeanne and Nicholas, was to challenge conventional beliefs of what a house looks like. We all have that generic housey design in our mind, right? ===>

Well, we wanted to smash this stereotype, and encourage the kids to imagine something more like this:

And they certainly didn't disappoint!  Some kids favored a very modern look...

Whilst others opted for a more rustic feel!

The imagination on display was impressive. What was also lovely to see was the overwhelming emphasis on Family occurring in most of the children's designs. As you ca...

November 6, 2017

Part 2 of Niamh's story: Pass the Crayon volunteer, Niamh, shares her thoughts and impressions from our movie-making workshop series, held at the Pankow refugee shelter.


Last week, I gave you all a run through of our PTC film-making workshop so far, in which a professional film director ran a three-part workshop series on shooting your own small film.

Last week, the kids got the chance to get in front of the camera and make their stories come to life, and this week, the finished movie clips are ready to be admired and critiqued by a 30 person strong panel of excitable judges. Each film had its own unique style, a great sense of fun, exuberance and a plentiful array of guns! Enjoy.


The first film is a tale of betrayal, witchcraft and resurrection from the dead from a group of tiara and tutu-clad actresses who jump around animatedly and cast their hexes upon similarly flamboyant enemies.

Their victims immediately drop to the floor, app...

October 7, 2017

Yesterday I helped with an art workshop at the refugee shelter in Spandau- the activity of the day was... print making! The prints were fun and easy to make (but MESSY), and the results came out really well.

The kids enjoyed it so much that they wanted to keep making more and more prints, so we had to start re-using the backs of pieces of foam. So my two big tips for hosting group print-making workshops are-- bring a LOT of materials. And do NOT not leave the paint rollers unsupervised, because the kids love to squeeze them and get paint all over their hands!

You will Need: 

  • x1 white piece of paper

  • x1 thin piece of foam

  • x1 pen or sharp object

  • paints of your choice

  • paint rollers (we recommend one for each type of paint)

  • paper plates (one per type of paint)


  1. Draw a rough sketch of your design onto the piece of foam.

  2. Take your pen (or similar pokey object), and poke/carve your design into the foam along the lines tha...

September 23, 2017

Now that we are well into September, the nights are getting longer, the winter woolies are emerging from wherever the hell we put them last year, and the leaves are falling from the trees.... Yes. Winter is coming.

BUT, we are going to squeeze in one more summery craft before we switch to dried leaf collages and stuff-made-with-pine-cones.

Our art idea this week is a sand collage. This is a fun one to make with younger children, but make sure you keep an eye on them with all that glue and sand- recipe for a sticky situation ;)

You will need:

  • Sand

  • Sea shells

  • Craft Glue (not pritt stick!!)

  • Paints & brushes

  • Large piece of paper (A3)

  • A knife for spreading the sand


1.  Draw a line across the page: this represents your sea/sand divide

2.  Paint your sea section. Get creative, paint groovy fish, floating jellyfish, maybe some sharks.... whatever floats your boat aha!

3.  Next for the fun part: cover the whole of your sand section with glue- spread eve...

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