This is a Halloween craft activity from October 2012. The ladies spoke of Halloween as something that was not part of their childhood, but they have noticed that this American tradition is increasingly embraced by Australians.
When children or grandchildren visit the nursing home around this time of year and see the craft work done by residents up on the dining room window, it's always a good point of conversation.
One of my goals with nursing home craft is to remember that it is much more about the process than the outcome. I sketched out the monsters in lead pencil and then helped the ladies pick out their watercolours to paint them in. Interestingly, all ladies chose strong and vibrant colours for their monsters.
Painting the monsters can take anywhere from 20 minutes to a full hour, depending on the lady. This group is diverse from their level of vision, hand eye coordination and dementia. The eldest lady painting was 100 years old! She paints with a magnifying glass so that she can see her brush strokes and is so happy to paint, something she never had the opportunity to try as a young woman with a family.
Once the monsters were painted and dry, I cut them out and popped them behind the haunted house and layered with cellophane, then attached it to the dining room window. It was a cheery Halloween decoration.