Design exercises with students to learn communication through play.

Using everyday interaction to address childhood bullying

During a research programme in primary schools, the issue of bullying and how staff were trying to combat it with communication and developing an understanding of those around us was highlighted. Through observation of the playground and children’s natural behaviour, we created an interaction to facilitate communication an interactive school bench for children, forming a communication tool for the playground.

Students carrying out further design exercises.

Every time a child swung their legs, the bench played a pre-recorded note. This provides the children with something engaging to use and communicate with. The object subverted the product language of the archetypal school bench that the children are familiar with. The product allowed children of different social ages to interact with one another in an uninhibited way.

Close of up products used with students as part of Communication Through Play.

Collaboration with Chris Hand, RCA Design Interaction.

“There was a drop in the hostility of the playground; children were engaging more in conversation”.
Primary school head teacher

Products for children to interact with as part of Communication Through Play.