Contemplative Kids

KALEIDOSCOPE is a group to nurture the contemplative heart of children, hosted by Benedictus Contemplative Church.
Any primary aged child is welcome.

Kaleidoscope offers children the opportunity to step out of the busy worlds in which they too live, to spend time reflectively, restfully and creatively.

Children’s lives are enriched by experiences that nurture their souls, open their hearts and minds to the presence of love and hope, and offer opportunities for creative expression, sharing stories and even some silence. These experiences foster calmness, connectedness and joy. They equip children to live well in a busy, noisy world.


retreat afternoons for primary school aged children

Forthcoming Kaleidoscope gatherings
Dates: 3 March

Time: 2:00 – 4:30pm
Location: Hall @ St Ninian’s, cnr Mouat & Brigalow Sts, Lyneham

Inquiries and RSVP to

To learn and discover more about our Kaleidoscope program and the experience of recent sessions, visit our Kaleidoscope blog.

Benedictus is committed to the care and welfare of children. As required by the ACT Reportable Conduct Scheme, Benedictus has developed procedures to ensure the safety of children and prevent and respond to child abuse. For more information, please see the Benedictus Reportable Conduct Policy and Procedure.


Further Information

Why are we offering KALEIDOSCOPE?As a contemplative community, we value making time in our lives for reflection and meditation, enjoying the way these practices flow into our lives, fostering spaciousness, insight, resilience and wisdom. We value exploring ways to reconnect ourselves and others with the reality of a Creator God who is present in our lives and our world.

One expression of these values is to offer time and space to others, that they too may find ways to nurture their inner life, the life of their souls. In the busyness of life, families need support in creating spaces, so Kaleidoscope offers parents the chance to have some time and children the opportunity to gather with others for a gentle and creative afternoon.
What do we hope? We hope that parents will appreciate the time in their weekend and find some time to breathe, relax, rest …

We hope that children will learn, grow and delight in the experiences offered at Kaleidoscope. We hope that they find it a space for connecting with their inner world and learning how quiet spaces help them feel calm and at peace. We hope they feel part of a gathering of friends who together enjoy creative activities and story sharing. We hope that these experiences nurture them now and into their futures, through providing new perspectives, a sense of hope, strategies for fostering non-anxiousness and rich tools for growing wholistically.
What will Kaleidoscope be like?Kaleidoscope will begin with a Gathering Circle, where all participants sit in a circle, open to one another, ready to listen and take turns. In this space we may read a story, take turns sharing a thought, listen to some music and teach the practice of meditation.

For children, meditation is about learning to be quiet and still for about 5 minutes, with their eyes closed and a simple word or picture in their mind. Children will be supported in learning different ways of doing this.

From the Gathering Circle, we will move into other activities such as:

  • Stories and drama

  • Music and movement

  • Restful reading and drawing

  • Art activities

  • Nature experiences

  • There will also be a time for shared afternoon tea.

We will then end with a Gathering Circle again where children take turns sharing something about their experience, showing a drawing or artwork or responding to open questions.
Who can come?Kaleidoscope is for Children from Kinder to Year 6.

If you have a child on the edge of this bracket who you think would like to attend (and is capable of independently managing the program), please talk to us.

If your child needs you to stay with them, you are welcome to settle them in until they feel comfortable.
Who is running Kaleidoscope?Kaleidoscope is led by Karina Harris, an early childhood educator and primary teacher of 30 years experience, who has worked with children and young people in many contexts. She has had teaching and leadership roles in a variety of educational and community settings. She is passionate about fostering children’s sense of wellbeing and spirituality.

Benedictus Contemplative Church is led by Sarah Bachelard. Sarah is an Anglican priest, theologian, author, a retreat facilitator with the Center for Courage & Renewal®, and a member of the World Community for Christian Meditation. The WCCM has pioneered the teaching of meditation to children in schools, in Australia and around the world. Sarah believes that children are natural contemplatives, and is delighted that Benedictus is sharing this gift.

Other leaders have teaching or other relevant qualifications and experience with children. All facilitators have WWVP clearance. There will always be one or more leaders with current first aid training.
Where is it held?We are fortunate to have the use of the facilities at St Ninian's Uniting Church at 150 Mouat St, Lyneham.

This facility offers good space, kitchen and toilets and is a safe, child-friendly, environment.
Is food provided?A simple afternoon tea will be provided: apples and other seasonal fruit, crackers including gluten free rice crackers, water to drink. Please notify us of any food allergies.
PaperworkUpon arrival you will need to sign your child in and complete an indemnity form. We will need you to provide contact details and any relevant medical information.
What do children need to bring?Children will need hats or jackets – whatever is appropriate for the season – as there will be some outside activities.

There are times when children can choose to have a rest or sit in their own spot to draw or read. They may like to bring a favourite cushion, blanket or soft toy. They may like to bring a favourite book or art journal that they are currently using. However, all of these will be provided.

If anything particular is needed for Kaleidoscope, this information will be on website along with the date of the event.
Is there a cost?There is no cost but donations to cover materials would be gratefully received. There will be a collection box at the sign in table.
Reportable allegationsAny concerns about the safety and well-being of children at Kaleidoscope may be raised with the Director of Kaleidoscope, the Director of Benedictus or the Benedictus Council. If you would like to notify the Director of Benedictus of a reportable allegation or a reportable conviction, as those terms are used in the Reportable Conduct scheme administered by the ACT Ombudsman, please email or speak to a member of the Benedictus Council.