voices of children
Developing ways in which children can experience and explore the built environment, we visited the city centre to encourage them to discuss the city, ask questions and share ideas on their views of the city. Together, we visited museums, galleries and places within their local environment. We were commissioned to make a film about listening to children discussing their own environments and the visits to other environments, this was part of the ‘every child a talker programme’.
We built a moveable structure in the Newton Heath Sure Start Children’s Centre in response to there being few accessible windows in the portacabin. Our structure created opportunities to look outwards and inwards that offered children chances to discuss location, activities through play and creative practice from within. After building the structure with us it stayed located in the space for many years.
Along with children from the Angels Play Centre, Gorton Market and a local charity shop were visited. We explored opportunities to have dialogues with market traders, journey story telling, trying on clothes and the purchasing of an artefact with which to develop a story. In response to a story about a bear hunt the children from Benchill Sure Start Children’s Centre created bridge-like structures from their understanding and re-enacting their memory of the story.
City Art gallery was also visited with children from Benchill Sure Start Children’s Centre to explore and experience a city centre public building. We used our bodies to mimic, measure and test out the movement of the lifts and bridges, look into and through reflective and transparent materials, and understand the structure of the building.