Hi Everyone.

It is that time of year again (well it's a little late, actually) when our thoughts turn towards themes for the coming year.

Following a conversation (or two) with Ronda, Team South Africa (all those lovely volunteers and Gogos) have come up with a fabulous list to get the ball rolling. Here 'tis......

TRADITIONAL HOUSING – tepees, shacks, tents, igloos, caravans, dwelling on stilts, log cabins

ZULU PATTERNS – google “shweshwe” / African patterns

MUSIC – Musical instruments (ie. African drums and other) music notes, titles, scores

AFRICA – beading, calabashes, cooking utensils, poitjie pots, wooden spoons (Viv sent me a pic of beading which I need to download and send to you.)

MANDELA DAY (always required !)


SOLAR SYSTEM – planets, stars, shooting stars, rainbows, clouds


SAFARI – wild animals, trees, bush

ON THE FARM – farm animals, fencing, barns, straw/hay, implements

SPRING FLOWERS and TREES - Jacaranda trees, Bougainvillia, Cassia, Flamboyant 



RAINBOWS – colours of …

WATER – blues/turquoises, colours of the sea, water plants, fish, sand colours, starfish

ROAD SAFETY – traffic signs, roadways, traffic lights, stop/go

KIDS BOARD GAMES – snakes&ladders, ludo, cards, tic tac toe, dominoes, checkers, chess, cards

We will probably combine some of these together. E.g. the seasonal squares of Summer, Spring and Autumn. 

Please let us know your thoughts on these and pop on your thinking caps and share some ideas of your own. We may not be able to use them all, but the more the merrier..........

Thanking you in anticipation.


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  • I like the idea of the emojis - I am sure there will be some patterns out there for anyone who wants to do colour work - and, of course, the emojis have their own colours for those who want to do PJs.

    The solar system would be a fun one to do.  

    I love the idea of On The Farm as well.

    Games is an interesting idea - I can see some squares I could make for that already - and maybe some toy snakes in lovely bright and stripes colours - or is that a bad idea?  Do you have local snakes that are dangerous?  We don't want the kids thinking that snakes are fun to play with if so!!

    Some really great and fun ideas here - fun to make and also they will be great fun for the kids to have in their blankets!

  • I was wondering how close we are to nailing down the themes and assigning them to months. :o)

    • Have sent you a message, Andrea. The answer to your question being reliant on a few outcomes in the theme process.

  • wondering how zulu patterns differ from Ndbele? I must go and google!

  • I particularly like the ideas for the first four, being themes we may not (or perhaps before my time here) have covered before, and also the road Anne says, it may be new, too. Opens a whole area of possibilities, and speaking for myself only, quite educational because it would require a lot of research for the Zulu/African themes!

    What do you think to a Month of Celebrations and/or Luck? This could include lucky symbols e.g. shamrock for St. Patrick's OR a solid green square, numbers, dice, horseshoe, or anniversaries using golden yellow/silver grey colours (or a motif). It could cover birthday, Christmas, International Days (flags), festival days, etc., with picture squares, solid or patterned squares. It could be as broad as there are reasons to celebrate.

    • I like this idea, Linda - lots of opportunities for all of us with picture squares and squares focusing on colour. 

    • Wow!! A good, well thought out idea, Linda.  :))

      • I was wondering about a toy theme, too Chris, as it's usually a good way to boost supplies before distributions really ramp up for the coming Winter....ooh, I don't want to think about next winter, still trying to get over this one.  :((

  • Lots of ideas that translate well into colours for non-picture squares. Like Amy, I always think an education theme is a good idea, and as toys are so badly needed (and much loved), should a Toy theme be included? I wonder if the SA team have noticed what squares / blankets from past themes the children may have particularly enjoyed seeing in a blanket?

    • Good to know. I’m working on a few now, and figured it wouldn’t hurt to double check. Thanks!
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