The circle as a pedagogic and artistic device, Portugal
Updated: May 9, 2019
Submission by Alexandra Matos
Organisation: AE2O - Second Chance School Matosinhos
Duration: 10 Minutes
In the symbology of forms, the circle has long been associated with perfection, union, fullness. The circle is movement, energy and protection and, in a lot of times, it is present in many artistic productions.
The circle, when used in a school context, can bring the entire school community together. It can have multiple uses such as the reception of youngsters on the beginning of each day or as a closing moment to finish the day together. It can be also used to give some dynamic to training sessions, through small artistic activities (games) with students or with trainers and others.
The circle allows you to have a clear vision of the group and in this way, it becomes a shortcut to connect with everyone.
We believe in the value of the circle as a pedagogical device, as a space of security and sharing and that favors the feeling of belonging to the group.
Choose a place to do the circle and remember that this place needs to be big enough to fit all the group. If it is a nice weather, try the outside!
It is important to keep in mind that the circle as an instrument that connects and brings together the school community, needs you to make sure that everyone is in this group.
Before starting the circle, plan on what are your intentions and what you expect from it. This will help you to lead the process and the group.
Strength the circle with small artistic dynamics. Games will add the surprise element that can spice things up and allows a creative and participative mood.
Use the circle as a democratic space for communication. Everyone has the right to use their voice in a constructive way. - - - Make room for it, but don’t force the process. It takes time and patience to engage.
To finish, be present! Your intentions will contaminate the group.
The circle feeds the feeling of belonging to a group, trust and horizontality of relationships. Each has an active voice and the right to express himself in an assertive and constructive way. Learning to listen, accept and respect the opinion of the other is also a skill that can be developed with this.
In our case, we’ve noted that, while in the first circles and assemblies, the youngsters are quieter and less participative, but with time, they become more active and participative in the important decisions for the school, recognizing themselves as a part of the school community.