Vanishing Cultures: Himalaya Mandala Activity

By Anastasia Suen

Make a MandalaActivity for
Vanishing Cultures: Himalaya

written and photographed by Jan Reynolds

Activity by Anastasia Suen

Tibetan monks are known for their sand paintings called mandalas. Hours in the making, these circular paintings of colored sand are filled with drawings of important religious and spiritual symbols. You can create your own mandala and fill it with your own symbols.

Draw a large circle on a sheet of paper and glue on images cut from magazines that represent you and your life. You may also cut colored paper into shapes or designs and glue them onto the circle to make a mosaic mandala. Or draw your own symbols by hand directly on the circle with crayons or colored markers.

If you wish to use sand like the monks do, you may draw with colored chalks on sandpaper. Or you may pour different colored sand onto a thick sheet of paper to create a design. To make the colored sand stick to the paper, put glue on the spot you want to color before you sprinkle on the sand. After each area dries, shake the excess sand onto a thin sheet of paper. Then carefully fold the thin sheet in half and pour the unused sand back into the original container.

Share pictures of your mandala. Take a digital photo and post it in our Photobucket album.

Happy creating!

Author/educator Anastasia Suen began teaching in the home. The author of over 100 books for children, she has also taught kindergarten to college in the classroom. Today homeschoolers use her blogs for book activities, reading lists, and writing lessons.

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