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The Stuck Hippopotamus

                                                            The Stuck Hippopotamus



The bulk of the material consists of the children's drawings, the photographs taken of their productions (including paintings and almost everything that was made of clay and cardboard) along with the accompanying words and stories. Most of this is on five by eight inch index cards. And the majority of it came from the children in the Day Unit although also included is all that was produced by the children in the nursery, in the special school and in the primary school in which I worked during the Special Education course. 

Each index card has on it a photograph of a tray construction and the words the child chose to describe it. Sometimes these words were more of a story than a description. And of the thirty three children who did make use of the room there were some who made frequent and prolonged visits and who produced numerous trays and constructions.  As a result, in some cases, a significant number of index cards exist. All the index cards are now in boxes measuring nine by six by twelve inches. Depending on the size of the children's drawings, it has also been possible to include the originals or copies of them. Those which did not fit have been boxed separately.

The same size of box, labelled to indicate the contents, has been used whenever possible

An example of an index card can be seen by clicking on the image above

Apart from the material which was recorded on index cards two compilations had been made using sheets of A4 paper. In the first of these a photograph of a tray construction had been pasted at the top of the page.  Written underneath in large print was the child's story about a tray. The discovery that children who found it difficult to read a book provided by their teacher could read a story about a tray which they had dictated- and do so fluently - had led us to try this out with several of them. Examples of the stories told in this way were in this selection

The second also used A4 paper. Again a photograph was pasted at the top of the page with the details of the child's visit written up underneath. In this selection, all the visits that took place in the Unit over a two week period were covered.

For all the material mentioned so far sixteen boxes have been used

Separate from those on the index cards and in a different box are several hundred photographs of details from the sand tray constructions. Included are copies of those which have been used on the Custtad web site at www.custtad.com. The image above, entitled The Stuck Hippopotamus, is an example

Along with these are selections of photographs associated with particular aspects of the work in the room. For example there are twenty photographs in which bobo's[1] are a feature. They are being held and drunk from by individual children and by children in two's or in groups of three and four. And this is happening while they are just sitting on a chair or making a tray, a cardboard construction or drawing a picture.  And when milk or water is not being taken from the bobo it is on a surface alongside them

A further selection of over fifty photographs are of the children at work, mostly  making trays but also blowing bubbles, working with clay, drawing and painting, cutting paper and playing with sand.  Again the children are alone in two's or in groups of three and four. One photograph shows six children working at different tasks

For confidentiality reasons none of the photographs featuring children can be used on the site

[1] Balancing the Request to be Good, Chapter 17,  p. 64. Going Back with Bobos



Box of details

Several examples of the photographs in the box can be seen by clicking on the image above

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