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Making carnival and plaster masks

Tinkering ideas for Carnival, or group meetings Making plaster masks is simple and easy to do in one group meeting or as part of a program at the holiday camp. It requires great patience from the person who has to lay down and patiently wait until his facial impressions are taken. Nothing, which comes naturally to most children. From this point of view, making masks might not be every child’s understanding of entertainment.


To make one plaster mask, you will need 2-3 plaster bandages. You could get away with only two bandages, but another layer(s) will make the mask more durable.

First, the plaster bandages are cut into 1cm wide strips so that you have sufficient pieces available. Next put a thick layer of Nivea Creme in the child’s face, including their eyebrows. If you want to can put two small tubes in the nostrils or just leave them open when putting the plaster bandages on. The child has to lay flat on his back, covered with an apron or a plastic bag to protect his clothes from the debris of the bandages.

Every plaster bandage strip is to be dampened and put on the face in its moist condition. Now, put one strip next to the other, slightly overlapping. With every additional layer, the mask will take on more shape. The more layers, the sturdier the mask, will be. After the last layer, smooth the surface of the mask out, to make it look natural. If you want to attach a rubber band later, which holds the mask to the head, the attachment point has to be thicker. Alternatively a piece of elastic could be plastered in.

When the modelling of the mask is finished, the child has to lay still until the plaster is dry. Only then, you can carefully remove the mask from the child’s face. If the face were was moisturized, that should not be a problem at all.

The plaster masks can be painted, or just left white.

Thoughts for discussion:

We are happy to hide behind masks; we are wearing masks in everyday life, so to speak. We don’t let anyone come close, maybe are afraid that others to see right through us. How did that come about? Maybe because we had had experiences where we made mistakes, where we were unable to do something; when we showed fear that somebody would laugh at us. The list can be endless. This is something we do not want to experience again. Therefore, we hide. Display a cool exterior or stay out of danger’s way, for others not to discover our flaws.

What is the consequence of such a masquerade? Withdrawal, loneliness, maybe the feeling of being a failure. An approach to life which is quite strenuous and stressful over time. How much nicer and freer would it be if we could approach others without fear. What prevents us from doing this?

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