Time Travel Binoculars
Create a pretend pair of binoculars as you reflect on how your history affects who you are today and imagine what might happen in the future.
What you’ll need: Toilet paper tubes x 2, tape, string, paper, pencil, pens/paint or other craft supplies to decorate
What’s it for?
This activity will help you think about how your personal history has influenced who you are. This will help you understand more about yourself, what you are grateful for, and how you might think about your life in the future.
Notice how you’re feeling right now. Close your eyes and notice what’s going on inside your mind and body.
How are you feeling?
What are you thinking?
How does your body feel?
Binoculars are a tool that help you see things that are far away. You might see someone use them to look at birds or maybe in a video game to see a target. When you twist the dial on a pair of binoculars it lets you focus on different distances: a little far away, medium far away, and really really far away. Imagine if you had a pair of binoculars that let you see, not things that are far away, but things that are long ago or far in the future!
To make your binoculars, put two toilet paper tubes side by side and tape them together. Tape the ends of your paper on either side of the tubes. To decorate, you could colour a piece of paper and then tape it around the outside of the two tubes. You might need to cut it down to size. You could also colour directly on the tubes.
Put the string around your neck and put your binoculars up to your eyes! These won’t really show you something far away, but pretend you can choose how far away into the past or future you can see.
Before you go on your imaginary journey, use some of your paper to make an explorer’s diary where you can write or draw your ideas. Start off by thinking about some of the things you love about your life or that you are grateful for. Write or draw these on your paper.
Now imagine that you are able to look back into the past with your binoculars. What would you see if you could look back 1 year? Maybe you lived in a different place, or played with different friends, or had a different hobby. How has this thing affected who you are today, and the things you love about your life?
Imagine if you could look back all the way until you were a baby! Write or draw pictures of what you imagine you would see. Keep thinking about the things you love about your life now, and how the things you could ‘see’ have led to right now.
What if you could look into the future? What do you hope you would see in 1 year? 5 years? 10 years? Draw or write about this on your paper.
Extra Activity: If you would like to, share your ‘travel diary’ with someone you trust in your home. If they have known you for a long time, ask if they can show you any photos from some of the years you ‘looked back’ to.
When you’ve finished, spend a moment reflecting on the activity and ask yourself the following questions:
What were some of the things you are grateful for at the moment? Was it hard or easy to pick things?
How did it feel to imagine you could see into the past?
Were there any times that you wish you could go back and visit?
Why could it be useful to think about how the past can affect the things we do now?
Is there anything you would want to be able to tell yourself in the past? What about in the future?
What do you imagine will stay the same as you get older? What might change?
This activity helps you to identify the positive things in your life, and how your past experiences have affected your life now. This can help you to understand your own history and think about what you hope for in the future.
Take a moment to notice how you are feeling at the end of this activity. Did you discover anything surprising? What can you take away to make you feel better about yourself from this activity?
If you would like to, share something about your experience with this activity with someone you live with! Ask the person who looks after you to send us an email if you have any questions or comments about the activity, or would like to send us any pictures (firstname.lastname@example.org). Don't forget to subscribe for more fun CAT activities!
Created by Heather Dingle © June 2020
Creative Arts Used: Art, Creative Writing
Psychological Areas Explored: Resilience, Relationships, Self-Exploration
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These activities could be done by children of all ages, but some may need the support of their parent or carer to read the instructions or complete the activity safely.
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