NEWS – Research phase of the ARTPAD project – June 2016

Partners are gathering for the 4th meeting of the ARTPAD project in June 2016.  This is the 10th month of a 36 month project, funded by Erasmus plus.  The first phase of the project is a research element to the project, whereby staff from the partner Organisations visit each other’s countries and see settings where teachers, youth workers and playworkers work with children and young people using drama and / or play.  The project has already been to Austria and Poland, with visits to Germany and the UK still to go.  When all visits have taken place this will be incorporated with research to form the basis of a Best Practice Guide that will be available in all the four languages of the partnership.

ARTPAD examines resilience in children and young people and has a goal of influencing how play and drama are understood and used by teachers and youth workers within formal and informal learning environments.  The idea is that drama and play in learning environments can enrich the experiences of the children and young people leading to increased motivation and engagement in learning. Across the EU there is a great emphasis on reducing levels of school drop-out rates and to help students to enjoy their learning experiences.

The critical concepts to the project – resilience, play, drama are difficult to define, philosophers and other academics have tussled with them over the centuries, they are understood differently across cultures and this brings a richness to the project through the transnational element being a key feature of the work.

During the 3 day visit to Hungary, the Rogers Foundation have organised a ‘Day of Joy’- a one day conference where 50 participants will attend and take part in numerous sessions and workshops around the theme of play, partners will also participate and will benefit from meeting a wide range of practitioners and talking to them about their work.  In addition, day one of the visit will involve a visit to a Theatre that organises events and projects working with Roma children.

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