Small Silence primary workshops use the arts to explore elements of children's social and emotional learning. The workshops are delivered through an immersive story, where helping the characters to solve a problem engages the pupils in imaginative arts work.
As well as having the opportunity to achieve an Arts Award Discover qualification, use sound recording equipment and build a fantastical quiet den, the workshops aim to explore the relationship between the quiet in the soundscape and our sense of ‘inner’ quiet. In so doing, pupils are encouraged to foster self-awareness, empathy for others and identify occasions when finding refuge in a quiet space may help us better manage our relationships with others.
"The Small Silence Workshop was such a brilliant experience for the children in my class. They absolutely loved using the equipment, something they would never get to do at Primary School. They had such an amazing time and I hope it's something that we can do again." Mr Gillick, The Heights Primary, Reading.
Den and soundtrack created during the small silence workshop at Battle Primary Academy, Reading, June 2019
The workshops are delivered by experienced community artists and are accessible to all KS2 pupils. The topic explored may be particularly pertinent to pupils for whom times of quiet are important, such as those with anxiety or particular learning needs.
"Thank you - the year 4 children loved the Silence workshops and we had very positive feedback directly from the pupils and also via the parents. They loved the opportunity to work outside on an open ended task that very much came from them. It fitted in really well with learning that the children had already done about reusing and recycling our materials. It was a great activity for developing the children's team work skills as well as perseverance and resilience (which not all the year 4 children find easy)."
Mrs Thomas, Yr4 Class Teacher, The Heights Primary, Reading