Snow story: Børnehuset Mariehønen (2022)
How have you experienced the co-creation between artist/cultural educator/cultural school teacher, educators and children and possibly researcher?
Immersion is the point of wonder.
A lot has happened in terms of communities and relationships.
A lot has happened between the children. They play together more.
The very act of co-creation:
Today we've dug canals, made giant lakes, made boats, sailed them.
You can dig, play with the water ... then they build on the game. The adult puts the bucket down, they take it and find out how the water runs ... great to see that they played without us "interfering" too much.
The kids are more receptive, they're excited to play with mud.
We had a couple of times where it was really cold and they didn't really want to do it, said it was boring (because they were freezing). We tried to get them involved in a new way.
Today: we left group 1 behind and let group 2 come in. Flow, smooth transition.
It's great to see T. who used to not bother and cry. He often stands and looks and walks away. Today he was completely absorbed, enjoying himself.
Beautiful to see how the kids took over.
Different: we came up with a few new things, created the framework first, then it works and the kids come along and the flow happens.
Moving from art to more play. Immersion. An art to make it so. Great with the child-adult contact that arises in the practical work. We are not in a hurry, you can be involved in many ways.
As an adult, you feel great because you don't have to correct them all the time. As an adult, you don't have to think about what they can and can't do.
When we went to the playground for the first time, we were afraid of what our colleagues would say.
There is a lack of play hooks on the playground. It can be difficult to stay focused.
Today, the children were a large group, co-creating.
What did you do differently? Joined in with the kids, more relaxed and brave, we let go and joined in, our calmness makes it happen.
How have children's perspectives been expressed/included?
Both children and adults: what we can do, what we can't do. After a few times, we let it go and something else happens.
Once we have set the framework: when it's clear, it becomes co-creative. For example, Bo comes up with something and the children are allowed to decide what happens. If things get stuck, we incorporate what they came up with and help the game move forward. They feel that their input is included in the game.
They can use the swings and slide, even if we're doing something else.
Do the children play different games and with different people than they usually do?
Yes, they do. The child who couldn't immerse himself is almost the one who is the most involved, immerses himself and joins in with the others.
The children have gotten to know each other and become friends, playing together. The adults have gotten to know each other better. I feel completely comfortable doing things with you.
Both x. and y. played together, normally they would never seek each other out. They do so even outside of PlayArt now.
Experimental community where they experiment together.
How do pedagogical staff act differently than they did before PlayArt?
We've become more free and relaxed.
Opened my eyes to what we can do on the playground. I'm sure we can put more of it into practice.
Open your eyes to the relationships.
What it means to be involved. Increased the quality of play by engaging in new ways.
Birgit: Awareness of one's own role has developed a lot.
It's a big deal that some staff members are nervous about where they are allowed to do things, such as dig a hole in the playground.
(2 x 12 children in each group: toddler group and middle group.)
What has it been like to work with action learning?
It's great to be allowed to test, reflect, do something different/more. Putting into words what works and what doesn't work. Talking about it also makes it easier to remember. Observe, formulate, write down. Provides an opportunity to develop. Both practically and professionally. Also with a focus on individual children. If we weren't allowed to talk about it, we wouldn't have time to think about it, we would have moved on. This has, for example, led us to consider what we can do for T. and make sure that he comes along better next time.
You can always talk more.
The biggest challenge is getting things written down.
To the artist/cultural educator/cultural school teacher, if present: What have you gained from participating in LegeKunst?
Birgit: Very much so. Super good interaction. Provided joy and nourishment, have felt you wanted to welcome. Like to take some battles.
I am training to become an art therapist. Would like to use this project in an assignment. There are many facets. In therapist language: it has been healing for both the children and the adults.
Preserve autonomy: have the joy of doing things, let go of control, in the framework, freedom can happen.
It's nice that it doesn't have to lead to anything specific.
Heidi: Birgit comes with a different look. At some point, you take over that gaze. You realize that things can change.
Bo: When you start out, you're told what you can and can't do and it's hard to break/change.
You really have to work on being in the slow processes, not going on and on.
What are educators still/now curious about?
Have this to continue, how we establish it here in the house: play and immersion. Without negative comments.
Heidi: I said one day at the playground that I think there are a lot of naysayers on the playground.
Bo: One day when a colleague said no to a children's initiative, I asked my colleague why she said no/stopped the game.
Xx: the kids asked if they could take off their shoes and socks. I said yes, but you have to stay in the sandbox because it was hot. We stopped it when we were going home and other adults took over.
It's exciting to see what it does for the children when they have more say. It gives us a different relationship with the children.
How will you use art, culture and aesthetic processes in the future?
Finding the space where we can do things. Here it can be. For example: plexiglass on the fence that you can paint on.
Eva: maybe get ideas from the kids.
What points of attention do we need to take forward?
You see what happens and we can't go back...
It started out a bit anxiety-provoking and was very much about the practicalities. Now it's not so much.