Exploring Kindness : Part 1
Working with Chill Club in Newington, Ramsgate our Project Coordinator, Becky Vincer, led a series of workshops to support young people to achieve their Arts Award Discover. At the end of the project some of the young people were keen to keep working and so the Arts Award Explore Kindness phase began!
Part A: Inspire
- Take part in arts activities to extend experience and understanding of the arts and to develop art skills.
As I’ve mentioned in the Discovering Kindness blogs the young people taking part in this Arts Award project attend a weekly youth group, and for some attendance can be patchy. So some of the activities that I’ll talk about in the next two posts are adaptable for either Discover or Explore.
One popular activity was making kindness quote posters, we started by looking at a list of quotes and discussing as a group which ones appealed to each of them most any why. Next they used crayons on thick paper to write out their chosen quote followed by using sponges and paint to make multi-coloured rainbow patterns. Alongside this there was also a large paper roll with space to answer questions such as: ‘What would you like to make better in your area?’ ‘How could you do that?’ and ‘What would you need?’
I also took some of the group to a local theatre to see Hannah & Hanna in Dreamland, a play about friendship, hatred and migration with all the characters played by two actresses. Lots of the group had seen a musical or a panto but never a play. After the show that reality was settling for some of them, while walking to a nearby pizza restaurant they compared moments in the play they liked best with excitement. But some also said they didn’t like the ‘sad bits’. This was something we dug into before the pizzas arrived. Using emoji paddles with thumbs up/down the group responded to open questions and discussed their different opinions.
Alongside the play there was an interactive workshop, the young people took part in drama activities acting out scenes from the play and learning how body language can make people feel welcome/unwelcome. To log all these activities in their sketch books the young people annotated photographs, flyers and re-told the stories from the play in emoji stickers.
Part B: Explore
- Explore the work of at least one artist and at least one arts organisation.
A regular feature at Chill Club is board games, so I searched online and discovered ‘The Art Trump Game’ which is much like top trumps. I also purchased ‘Art Oracles: Creative & Life Inspiration from the Great Artists’ with cards giving advice on life, work or inspiration from great artists. The young people played with them both and selected the cards with artists they wanted to find more about. Using their phones and art books they researched the artist and their works searching for evidence to see if that artist was kind in any way. Bailey learned about Banksy and compared him to his favourite DJ Marshmello who also hides his identity. We had a conversation about why you would want to be famous, but still protect your identity and how this was being kind to yourself. He also looked at the way that Banksy made political statements with imagery, not words and we spoke about how his work can make people aware of problems in the world.
On the other hand, Kam was quite shocked to discover Picasso’s infidelities and we had a great conversation about how that made Kam think differently about the artist’s artwork and question if it was still okay to be a fan of someone who had been unkind.
To learn about People United for their organisation section, the young people played a game of matching pairs using cards which each with a fact about People United and an image relating to the fact. They would play the game until they had three matching pairs and they would then make a note in their sketch books about what they learnt. We also asked them to think about what theme and art form they’d like to explore if they were creating a People United commission for their town.
Look out for Part 2 of our arts award case study coming soon.
Interested in our arts award offer? Email [email protected] for more information.