Ideas and Inspirations - Gallery 1



This page:
The Wishing Tree - Elanora Heights PS NSW Australia
Ambassadors of Peace - Adel, Georgia USA
Under the wings of the crane - Fremont-Elizabeth CHS, Adelaide, Australia
Stargazer Youth Theatre Festival - Kippens, Newfoundland, Canada

Other Ideas and Inspirations:
Cranes for Peace - Santa Fe, New Mexico USA
Wish for good health - Ludlow, Vermont USA
Sadako puppet performance - Cape Town, South Africa
"Our World" Exhibition - Phoenix Public Library, Arizona USA
Grade 3 Peacemakers - Cape Cod Academy, Massachusetts USA
Cranes to The Hague - the Netherlands
The art of paper cranes - Classic Cranes, Hawaii USA
Hopes and fears - STARTTS, Fairfield NSW Australia
Crane exchange with Hiroshima - Mokena, Illinois USA
Les 1000 grues de l'espoir - Toulouse, France
Cranes for a wedding - San Francisco USA
Installation of '10,000 Cranes' Iowa City, Iowa USA
'The Voice' Youth magazine competition - Camden Library NSW Australia
 Rock Eisteddfod - Seaview High School, South Australia
Cranes Going Global - Oshkosh Public Library, Wisconsin USA
The Flight of the Cranes, Skylar's Mission - Pleasant Valley, New York USA
Cranes and keypals -Shohola, Pennsylvania USA

'The Wishing Tree'
Elanora Heights Primary School - NSW Australia

In February 1997, Elanora Heights Primary School in Sydney NSW held a Wishing Tree activity in which we folded a thousand paper cranes.  We received wishes for a better world environment from several of the 80 schools around the world who were contributing to our Trees and Forests Project.  Many children sent wishes for World Peace because most of their schools had read the original story of Sadako Sasaki to the children to set the scene.  The wishes were attached to the paper cranes we had folded and hung on the Wishing Tree (at left). 

You can see the wishes we received on this page:
As we had hundreds of wishes from our own school they are not printed on that page but those from other schools are rather special, since English is not the mother tongue of some of the contributors. 

This activity was a very satisfying way of linking wishes for peace with wishes for a healthier world environment.

Judith Bennett  
Computer Co-ordinator
Elanora Heights Primary School
Elanora Road
Elanora Heights  NSW  2101 Australia

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'Ambassadors of Peace'
Girl Scout Troop 491 and Cook Elementary School -  Adel, Georgia USA

In May 1997, Ladies Home Journal launched an ongoing community-service campaign called the Millennium Project in association with the Points of Light Foundation (a non-profit organization dedicated to community service).  The project encouraged everyone to donate 1,000 of something before the year 2000.   Our Girl Scout Troop wanted to come up with a service project that was based on the goals of Girl Scouting and would fit into the above criteria.  We felt we could contribute to the improvement of society through the use of our abilities and leadership skills, and through work in cooperation with others.

We decided to spread the message of World Peace first among ourselves, then to our community and beyond, as 'Ambassadors of Peace'.   Our Peace Project commenced on World Peace Day 17 November 1997.  After reading the story Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes, we began folding origami cranes in our wish for World Peace, together with Troop Leader Laura Whitfield's Grade 4 class at Cook Elementary School in Adel, Georgia.  The folding of cranes soon spread throughout Grade 4 and on to Grades 3 to 5.  'Many hands make Peace work.'

We strung some cranes as mobiles and delivered them to nursing homes, businesses, schools, churches, family and friends during the Christmas season.  Anywhere the girls travelled they left a crane with a message for Peace.  Many people looked at us like we were strange, while others were so thankful.   Cranes were also delivered by the Girl Scouts when we went Christmas carolling.  We gave each resident of the nursing homes a crane with the word 'PEACE' written on its wings.  As Sadako said:
'I will write PEACE on your wings, and you will fly all over the world.'  We also made a crane mobile as a symbol  throughout the year of our hope for, and our commitment to, peace.

The girls rode in the Adel Christmas Parade.  However, instead of throwing the traditional candy to the crowds, they threw cranes, again with 'PEACE' on their wings.  The truck we rode in had a banner that proclaimed 'CRANES FOR PEACE' decorated with cranes.  Another banner had a quote from the Sadako story: 'This is our cry, this is our prayer, Peace in the World.'

The crowds loved them!  We had passed out all of those origami cranes before the end of the parade!  The town liked it so much, we passed out another thousand at the parade in 1998.  It has become our annual project unique to our troop.  All the girls receive crane pins (from Fascinating Folds) to wear on their vests as our troop emblem.  Hopefully this will always remind them to stay involved in community service.

Our continuing goal is to spread the message of Peace in our community and as far as we can reach. 
Our motto has become 'Learn Peace.  Teach Peace.  Make a Difference.'

Laura Whitfield
Teacher/Troop Leader
Cook Elementary School
1504 Patterson St
Adel,  GA 31620   USA


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'Under the wings of the crane'
Fremont-Elizabeth City High School - SA  Australia

A flock of a thousand paper cranes hovers overhead in the English as a Second Language (ESL) Unit at Fremont-Elizabeth City High School in Adelaide, South Australia.  The bird symbol, which runs through all the work of our unit, represents freedom - the desire to rise above problems, embrace many lands and cultures, and to make journeys - inner ones and physical ones. 

The unit has been in operation since 1988, serving students from Year 8 to Year 12.  Many are refugees and some have seen family members tortured or murdered - most have lived in almost constant fear and have had to learn to survive.  We attempt to work with families and communities as well as individual students through an outreach program involving parent lessons and bilingual workers.  The program is about change towards a more compassionate and embracing society which starts with valuing the individual person.

We have been producing books of stories written by students.  These often deal with the sadness of leaving their home countries and the joy of finding safety in Australia.

Some students have the chance to revisit their homelands, taking with them cranes from the classroom, and returning the cranes with messages written on them by friends and relatives.

All ESL students in their final year receive a small silver crane badge.  After graduating, they move on to other parts of the world, sometimes to their homeland, and send back their stories on a paper crane.   The students' stories read as if the crane had flown over the landscape and recorded what it had seen - suffering, improvement, the political situation - part of the global information bank being built for, and with, the students.

[The above item was adapted from 'Under the wings of the crane' by Ron Hoenig in
Monthly DECSpress vol.2 no.3 April 1997]

In addition to the flight of a thousand paper cranes, we have a large golden crane.  Many visitors have wished beneath this golden crane, including the Governor of South Australia.  Recently the students folded another thousand cranes and a large golden crane for an exhibition at the Migrant Museum in Adelaide called 'Twist of fate' which tells the stories of many refugees over a sixty year time period.  This display is about to tour the State and will later tour around Australia.

The page 'Paper Cranes by Janice Madden-Shephard' has a short story which is based on our experience with paper cranes.  The page includes details on how to order our booklet entitled
'Flight of the magical paper cranes' which contains the short story and stories by students.

You can visit the school site and the ESL unit at:

Janice Madden-Shephard                      Bev Rogers
ESL Coordinator                                  Principal

Fremont-Elizabeth City High School
Philip Highway
Elizabeth   SA  5112  Australia

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Stargazer Youth Theatre Festival
Kippens, Newfoundland Canada

The Stargazer Youth Theatre Festival involved a group of students from ages 15 - 18 in developing the play  A Thousand Cranes, kicking off the festival on 6 August to commemorate the anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima.   The play was a great success - I believe we did a beautiful job of bringing Sadako's story to the stage.  As part of the work on the production we folded cranes and gained support from the youth in the community to fold more.

Many of these cranes were on display during the festival along with information on Sadako's story and Hiroshima.  We also included a crane in each program which could be signed by the attendee and dropped in a deposit box for later transportation to one of the cranes projects.  By the end of the festival we had collected and folded 650 cranes.  And now the teenagers involved with the production want to continue with the project until we have a thousand to submit.  We will be contacting the elementary school system to see if they can include the story in their term and make the crane folding project a part of their classes.

Sarah  MacDonald Anderson

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