Explore a traditional Japanese form of contemplation.
- Large, shallow baking pan or cookie sheet
- Moist sand
- Stones of various sizes
- Cardboard rectangle about the size of a comb
- Spray water bottle (optional)
Create a Japanese Zen garden. These gardens are traditionally intended for contemplation or meditation. To create them, artists use stones and sands. The stones represent mountains; the sand is raked into a pattern of flowing water. Children can make their own Zen garden using a large, shallow pan with stones for mountains and sand for water.
- Fill pan or cookie sheet with sand. Moisten sand using the spray water bottle.
- Pat the sand into the pan. Place several stones in the sand to symbolize mountains surrounded by water.
- Cut spaces in the edge of the cardboard so it resembles a comb with widely spaced teeth.
- Comb the sand to give the effect of flowing or rippling water.
- Experiment by rearranging the stones or combing the sand in a different way to create a new design.
- Place your Japanese-style Zen garden on a table or window ledge and enjoy contemplating its beauty.
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