The Dome Education & Gathering Center


Programs & Workshops




Through the arts, children begin to see themselves as capable and talented human beings responsible for their own lives. Our children's programs draw on the child's natural sense of wonder, infinite imagination and respect for creation.

In our art room, we strive to create a working environment, an accepting atmosphere in which the children can feel safe, comfortable, and emotionally secure. We want their art experience to be exploratory, to be unthreatening and fun.

How an adult responds to the child's artwork is extremely significant. It's important that a grown-up not project his or her own ideas onto the work. Asking a five- or six-year-old what his painting or drawing represents can be confusing. The painting or drawing may have one image along with many additional shapes and lines, added for the purposes of design. The teacher must strive to understand the child's aims and can accomplish this by paying close attention to what is happening. Many teachers ask the kids to explain what they're doing. We try not to do this because the work itself will tell us loud and clear if we look at it carefully. Active and close observation helps one get in touch with the child.

Play is the work of childhood. It is the foundation of creativity in thinking. For the young child, play is a way of understanding the world and is vital for emotional and future intellectual development. The inner forces of imagination, creativity, and flexibility that are developed during play strengthen each child's capabilities for later learning in school and career. At The Dome Education & Gathering Center, children are afforded rich opportunities for creative play.




We drum to reconnect to the
rhythm of life, we recall our mothers heartbeat ...our first harmony in this life. We drum as a group and practice our own rhythm while remaining in relationship with someone in a different rhythm.
Drumming creates understanding without the restraints of common language. Drumming may begin with a feeling of chaos but through community and energy the harmonic rhythm is found and formed.






Nature Deficit Disorder

The term “nature-deficit disorder” was coined by author Richard Louv in his book “Last Child in the Woods” to describe what happens to young people who become disconnected from their natural world. Louv links this lack of nature to some of the most disturbing childhood trends, such as the rises in obesity, attention disorders, and depression.

Chicago Wilderness and its more than 250 member organizations invite you to Leave No Child Inside! Find inspiration in their pages to take your kids outside and skim stones, count butterflies or go fishing. Go outside with them and look, listen, touch, and smell! Let your kids take the lead -- with their natural curiosity, they will quickly find something for the family to explore, in any season, at any time.

 Thomas Berry, The Dream of the Earth
"Teaching children about the natural world should be seen as one of the most important events in their lives."



"Our Children no longer learn how to read the great book of Nature from their own direct experience, or how to interact creatively with the seasonal transformations of the planet. They seldom learn where their water come from or where it goes. We no longer coordinate our human celebration with the great liturgy of the heavens."

Wendell Berry

 If a child is to keep alive his inborn sense of wonder, he needs the companionship of at least one adult who can share it, rediscovering with him the joy, excitement and mystery of the world we live in.

Rachel Carson

 Children’s Outdoor
Bill of Rights

Every child should have the
opportunity to:

❑ Discover wilderness—prairies, dunes,
forests, savannas, and wetlands
❑ Camp under the stars
❑ Follow a trail
❑ Catch and release fish, frogs, and
❑ Climb a tree
❑ Explore nature in neighborhoods
and cities
❑ Celebrate heritage
❑ Plant a flower
❑ Play in the mud or a stream
❑ Learn to swim

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