Last week, interesting theories, questions and wonderings with authentic potential were uncovered in our neighbourhood in connection to provocations connected to the artist in residence program. These artists have been specially chosen from our local community as part of our whole school wellbeing project and include a photographer, musician and dancer. We were able to begin to document some intriguing responses, and thinking arising from these initial provocations. Many possibilities for project pathways have begun to present themselves. We will continue to further provoke, listen to the children’s responses and inquire alongside each other, building a deeper understanding of our unique situation throughout 2020.
In particular two of these provocations created interesting responses and opened up possible pathways for research in our Prep Neighbourhood.
If covid was a sound what might it sound like?
This was the provocation presented to the children by the music/sound artist in residence, Emily. Our children seemed to have an instant connection and response to this thoughtful provocation.
Louis: We could make a special machine to listen to it.
Olson: We could make a micro-mini megaphone
Louis: I already know what it looks like (corona)
Emily: What might it sound like?
Zara: I don’t think it can talk.
Jack: We could make a little recording machine that goes next to it and then the sound gets to put into it and we could record the sound.
Maybe if we were all quiet enough we could hear the Coronavirus. If we’re quiet enough maybe we could hear it….maybe we need to bend down to the ground and if the whole neighbourhood is quiet or maybe the whole world is quiet we could hear it. Sakura
My mum and dad were looking at the news and they were watching some sort of dolphins and they were sleeping. They weren’t just sleeping on the sea floor they were swimming but they knew where each other were- they had special senses. So they split apart but could still find each other. It’s a bit like Coronavirus because it’s floating around but the sounds are so small The sounds the dolphins make are like corona virus because they float around and are so small and you can’t see them but then like the dolphins you can feel the sound that their making. Elspeth
After Emily left our children took their theories into the art studio whilst exploring with the language of clay. To our surprise when we came to document their time at the clay table we found they had been creating machines to capture the sounds of covid.
Photography as a language for telling stories.
When Darren, the photography artist in residence came to our neighbourhood to share his provocation there was a beautiful moment of intense connection for many of our children. Darren shared a series of photos that told the story of a young child’s journey through eye surgery and his first experiences of seeing with his family. After sharing this moment together Darren further provoked the children to think about the potential photos offered as a means of storytelling. This resonated with us as educators as well. We had been discussing with our children the unique situation of next year’s preps and explaining how these future preps may not be able to come to the neighbourhood for transition sessions. We were initiating an exploration of different ways to share the story of learning and life in the prep neighbourhood with the 2021 preps.
We could print the pictures that we take and put them on the poster…..remember how he said the newspaper has that little bit of writing that tells the story well we could tell the story of our photos and of our prep place. We could take photos of each other. Milo
I know how we can show the preps what it’s like, we can take photos. We could print them out and stick them on a board and we could do some writing and put it on the wall, then when the new preps come they can see what it’s like to be in the neighbourhood. Finn
Maybe we could give them an ipad that has a video about the prep neighbourhood. Rithika
These new encounters may provide further insight to our recent documentation and potential research about the importance of familiarity for our children’s sense of wellbeing when reconnecting to our neighbourhood. Could uncovering the story of prep help our children explore more moments of familiarity? Could we use photos as a way of connecting to the children coming in 2021? Could we connect this to other documented inquiries around letter writing and postal systems happening in our neighbourhood? Could we create a series of photos that tell our story and send them to the new families? Could this create authentic reasons for writing in our neighbourhood?
We are excited to continue to document the children’s theories about covid in connection to sounds as well as further exploring the potential for authentic learning presented by the idea of photos as stories.