Saturday, 14 June 2014

How kids in East London helped create a Little Free Library

My name is Kate Westbrook and I run a start up company called The Climbing Frame which develops and runs creative projects with children in East London. I saw the Little Free Library Project (LFL Project) online and thought it would be lovely if the kids that I work with at The Climbing Frame could take part in some way.

I contacted Nick Cheshire, the Project Manager for the organisation and he thought it was a great idea to involve children in the design of a Little Free Library.

Working with a group of 5-9 year olds at The Mill on Coppermill Lane in Walthamstow, we decided to take our inspiration from lots of lovely fresh fruit and made bright graphic collages with coloured paper. There were grapes, strawberries, apples, pears, grapefruits, oranges, bananas and even a big spiky pineapple! During our making session, the kids were free to eat the fruity still life subjects - the strawberries disappeared particularly quickly!

I then took photos of their wonderful designs and painted them onto a special Little Free Library that the LFL Project had built for us. The kids' designs were so vibrant and graphic, they looked brilliant plastered all over the Little Library. One of the things that made this Little Library so special was that it was built especially for children and specifically smaller than all the other Little Libraries. In fact, I was told that it is the smallest Little Free Library ever made.

The Little Free Library is now installed in a special children's area at a family friendly pub in Walthamstow called the William Morris Bar. They have a special club just for kids called the Morris Minors and teach language classes to children at weekends as well as hosting the world's littlest Little Free Library full of inspiring kids books.

By Kate Westbrook, Founder of the Climbing Frame and Art teacher.

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