Title of the activity
The Silent Circle
Number of participants does not matter
Activity proposed by
Vimmart – Inclusive Art School
The Silent Circle emphasizes non-verbal interaction and action without verbal instructions. Therefore the excercise is particularly well suited to starting an activity with a new group.
No special materials are needed. The space should be as accessible as possible to make it easy for the participants to move around.
No special preparations needed.
- Start by walking up to a participant, smiling and offering a hand or taking their hand. Together go to the next person and the next person. Pay personal attention to each person in the room. The idea is to eventually form a circle with joined hands.
In the exercise, you don’t need to speak or give verbal instructions. Participants may or may not speak, it doesn’t matter.
- Once you are in the circle, start moving without verbal guidance. You can walk, raise arms, clap – or anything! You can take impulses from the movements of the participants or the space around.
The movement patterns and duration of the exercise can vary accordingly.
Observation of the group is important. After the exercise it is good to sit down and discuss feelings that have arisen.
Hints/tips for facilitators
This exercise can be used with a new group at the beginning, even before the facilitator introduces himself or herself. Sometimes the participants may be surprised and ask the facilitator something. In this case, the facilitator can just smile and not answer the question. Any questions and feelings that arise should be discussed together at the end.
The Silent Circle can be developed almost indefinitely. The facilitator should observe the impulses of the group and act on them.
The exercise is from the Finnish method Tanssi-innostaminen® (transl. Dance animateuring)
It is an artistic-pedagogical method developed by Raisa Foster, PhD. It aims to animate individuals and communities through a variety of exercises.