“Smiles of Art” program

The purpose:

Art has the ability to teach with all senses (holistic learning). The aim is to cultivate, accentuate, sensitize and help to develop all the senses of the children so that they can help and understand more fully what they see, hear and touch. The child is released, plays and develops his imagination. The result of this is to cover the internal need through expression, creating communication with emotions and the environment holistically.

The child in front of the sight of familiar materials begins to interact with them and explore new possibilities for his character. It focuses on the right answers for both himself and his behavior. This helps the child recognize and praise his efforts.


Children involved in art have more opportunities to gradually build on their own abilities, increase their self-confidence, believe in themselves, and understand their disadvantage by making it their advantage. Finally, they are given the opportunity to trust and establish friendly ties with the rest of the team.


The program is not only for children with rare diseases, but for all children of families members of the Unique Smileys Association. The art workshop is provided free of charge to all members.

Art workshop activities:

3D Creations

Any 3D creation based on occupational therapy can strengthen the fingers due to the mobility of fine skills. At the same time, he can empower thinking, realize what he has imagined with simple materials (e.g cartons, aluminum foil sheets) in front of his eyes.

A suggestion would be: “I recreate my Cyprus in 3D for a future like I dream of.” It could include the characteristics that each child would like each city to have. Our disability can open our eyes to new abilities and not disabilities, creating the future as we want. With cartons, each child will be able to feel the carton that will help with perception and mobility based on occupational therapy. At the same time, there will be a discussion among children about what they create, how they feel with colors and materials. With the bases of Logotherapy, children when they develop any form of their art are easier to express.

Paint and paper options

When a child colors, paints “correctly”, with proper movements, and even painting with his fingers, exteriorises his feelings through the colors. As a result, it is the therapeutic form of ergotherapy for the reasons that it focuses, thinks and creates at the same time, using properly the functions of his hands. Also, by adding glitter to dyeing or using sandpaper, it would help identify what it uses and experiment with various materials. Paints and colors in general help to release emotions and can help stimulate intellectual development, enhance positive emotions and improve cognitive performance.


The use of materials such as clay, play dough, is beneficial to children with visual challenges and can motivate them to work on fingertips at the same time, focusing on concentration. Generally, engaging in clay has relaxing properties. As you create, you can forget and awaken all the senses by helping the more introverted children to open. They can feel their creations as they evolve.

Creation with clay offers people a rich opportunity to cope with their feelings and experiences through the sensory form that responds to them. Clay is a very good medium compared to other materials because it works with you instead of against you.


The technique of collage is a rich aesthetic experience for children and offers too many possibilities for personal expression. In particular, it cultivates their natural desire to explore the world through the sense of touch. It allows a certain level of flexibility. Children can decide which materials to use to handle these shapes with different texture, shape and color. Given the above, collage is a functional tool because it helps the child cut off different materials and use his fingers.

Materials to be handled by children:

• Acrylic colours
• Balsa Wood (lightweight)
• Brushes
• Buttons
• Canvas
• Tools for carving
• Chalk
• Charcoal
• Crayons
• Decorative items
• Digital camera
• Design objects

• Paint
• Eraser
• Fabric
• Dyeing of Fabric
• Foam seals
• Printing plates
• Graphics
• Graphics applications
• Newspaper
• Loose paper
• Magazines
• Markers

• Molds
• Paper clay
• Magician paper
• Pastel
• Designed papers
• Pencils
• Pen
• Photo paper
• Photos
• Spray colors
• Stamps
• Watercolors

Project Manager
Raffaella Miltiadous
MA Artist Teacher and Contemporary Practices
Goldsmith University London