The Classics - Alice's Adventures in Wonderland: Lyrici Arts Library Toolkit 2020

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Prepared by Lyrici Arts Copyright 2020Â




CONTENTS Project Introduction


A Mad Tea Party: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland


Specialist industry advice and methods from diverse creative practitioners for running an arts event within a library setting


Recommendations from leading industry organisations for operating within libraries in an arts context


Creative considerations when PRODUCING an event IN A LIBRARY




Acknowledgements and thankS



"Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?" - said Alice







WELCOME! You have stumbled across this toolkit either because you have an interest in the arts, libraries, diversity... or all three! We hope that you enjoy your journey of discovery.



Strength lies in differences not in similarities. STEPHEN R COVEY



WHAT IS DIVERSITY? The concept of diversity encompasses acceptance and respect. It means understanding that each individual is unique, and recognising those individual differences. These differences can include race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, age, physical abilities, religious beliefs, political beliefs, or other ideologies. It is the exploration of these differences in a safe, positive, and nurturing environment. It is about understanding each other and moving beyond simple tolerance to embracing and celebrating the rich dimensions of diversity contained within each individual. Accepting and acknowledging differences can ultimately help to bring us all together. The Arts Council England believes strongly in the importance of diversity, which is highlighted in their agenda for the Creative Case for Diversity. Here is their explanation: Diversity and equality are crucial to the arts and culture because they release the true potential of our nation's artistic and cultural talent – from every background. Our diverse nature offers unique opportunities for artistic and cultural collaborations and innovation. We call this the 'Creative Case for Diversity'. The Creative Case for Diversity is a way of exploring how arts and cultural organisations and artists can enrich the work they do by embracing a wide range of influences and practices. We believe

that embracing the Creative Case helps arts and cultural organisations not only enrich their work, but also address other challenges and opportunities in audience development, public engagement, workforce and leadership, and collections development in museums. Our funded organisations are expected to show how they contribute to the Creative Case for Diversity through the work they produce, present and collect.

WHAT TO EXPECT Lyrici Arts have devised a toolkit to examine effective ways to diversify library arts activities to successfully unite communities. We look closely at the diversity and inclusion aspects of devising events for participants who are visually impaired, who are deaf, who are children, and for people with disabilities and special educational needs. We also include a wide range of industry advice and top tips from leading UK organisations and professional creative facilitators. As children we loved the library, and as adults working in the arts, they have been central to our work. Exploring diversity and inclusion via the arts continues to be our passion. We have based our toolkit on Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland but you can use these guidelines to theme an arts project around the subject of your choice. We hope that you enjoy this toolkit as you delve into the magical world of Alice.





Devising an arts programme should be exciting! Think about what inspires you and use this to brainstorm ideas around creativity, diversity and inclusion. We love the story of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and we chose to focus our project activity on Alice and her curious encounter with the Mad Hatter's Tea Party.



Diversity is a great force towards creativity. MICHAEL EISNER



A MAD TEA PARTY: ALICE'S ADVENTURES IN WONDERLAND, BY LEWIS CARROLL There was a table set out under a tree in front of the house, and the March Hare and the Hatter were having tea at it: a Dormouse was sitting between them, fast asleep, and the other two were using it as a cushion, resting their elbows on it, and were talking over its head. 'Very uncomfortable for the Dormouse,' thought Alice; 'only, as it's asleep, I suppose it doesn't mind.' The table was a large one, but the three were all crowded together at one corner of it: 'No room! No room!' they cried out when they saw Alice coming. 'There's plenty of room!' said Alice indignantly, and she sat down in a large arm-chair at one end of the table.' Have some wine,' the March Hare said in an encouraging tone. Alice looked all round the table, but there was nothing on it but tea. 'I don't see any wine,' she remarked.' There isn't any,' said the March Hare. 'Then it wasn't very civil of you to offer it,' said Alice angrily. 'It wasn't very civil of you to sit down without being invited,' said the March Hare.'I didn't know it was your table,' said Alice; 'it's laid for a great many more than three.'

'Your hair wants cutting,' said the Hatter. He had been looking at Alice for some time with great curiosity, and this was his first speech. 'You should learn not to make personal remarks,' Alice said with some severity; 'it's very rude.' The Hatter opened his eyes very wide on hearing this; but all he said was, 'Why is a raven like a writing-desk?' 'Come, we shall have some fun now!' thought Alice. 'I'm glad they've begun asking riddles. — I believe I can guess that,' she added aloud. 'Do you mean that you think you can find out the answer to it?' said the March Hare. 'Exactly so,' said Alice. 'Then you should say what you mean,' the March Hare went on. 'I do,' Alice hastily replied; 'at least — at least I mean what I say — that's the same thing, you know.' 'Not the same thing a bit!' said the Hatter. 'You might just as well say that "I see what I eat" is the same thing as "I eat what I see"! 'You might just as well say,' added the March Hare, 'that "I like what I get" is the same thing as "I get what I like"!' 'You might just as well say,' added the Dormouse, who seemed to be talking in his sleep, 'that "I breathe when I sleep" is the same thing as "I sleep when I breathe"!' It is the same thing with you,' said the Hatter, and here the conversation dropped, and the party sat silent for a minute, while



remarked. 'It tells the day of the month, and doesn't tell what o'clock it is!' 'Why should it?' muttered the Hatter. 'Does your watch tell you what year it is?' 'Of course not,' Alice replied very readily: 'but that's because it stays the same year for such a long time together.' 'Which is just the case with mine,' said the Hatter. Alice thought over all she could remember about ravens and writing-desks, which wasn't much. The Hatter was the first to break the silence. 'What day of the month is it?' he said, turning to Alice: he had taken his watch out of his pocket, and was looking at it uneasily, shaking it every now and then, and holding it to his ear. Alice considered a little, and then said 'The fourth.'

Alice felt dreadfully puzzled. The Hatter's remark seemed to have no sort of meaning in it, and yet it was certainly English. 'I don't quite understand you,' she said, as politely as she could. 'The Dormouse is asleep again,' said the Hatter, and he poured a little hot tea upon its nose. The Dormouse shook its head impatiently, and said, without opening its eyes, 'Of course, of course; just what I was going to remark myself.'

'Two days wrong!' sighed the Hatter. 'I told you butter wouldn't suit the works!' he added looking angrily at the March Hare.

'Have you guessed the riddle yet?' the Hatter said, turning to Alice again.

'It was the best butter,' the March Hare meekly replied.

'No, I give it up,' Alice replied: 'what's the answer?'

'Yes, but some crumbs must have got in as well,' the Hatter grumbled: 'you shouldn't have put it in with the bread-knife.'

'I haven't the slightest idea,' said the Hatter.

The March Hare took the watch and looked at it gloomily: then he dipped it into his cup of tea, and looked at it again: but he could think of nothing better to say than his first remark, 'It was the best butter, you know.'

Alice sighed wearily. 'I think you might do something better with the time,' she said, 'than waste it in asking riddles that have no answers.'

Alice had been looking over his shoulder with some curiosity. 'What a funny watch!' she

'Nor I,' said the March Hare.

'If you knew Time as well as I do,' said the Hatter, 'you wouldn't talk about wasting IT. It's HIM.'



'I don't know what you mean,' said Alice.

'in this way:

'Of course you don't!' the Hatter said, tossing his head contemptuously. 'I dare say you never even spoke to Time!'

—"Up above the world you fly,

'Perhaps not,' Alice cautiously replied: 'but I know I have to beat time when I learn music.'

Twinkle, twinkle — "'

'Ah! that accounts for it,' said the Hatter. 'He won't stand beating. Now, if you only kept on good terms with him, he'd do almost anything you liked with the clock. For instance, suppose it were nine o'clock in the morning, just time to begin lessons: you'd only have to whisper a hint to Time, and round goes the clock in a twinkling! Half-past one, time for dinner!' ('I only wish it was,' the March Hare said to itself in a whisper.) 'That would be grand, certainly,' said Alice thoughtfully: 'but then — I shouldn't be hungry for it, you know.' 'Not at first, perhaps,' said the Hatter: 'but you could keep it to half-past one as long as you liked.'

Like a tea-tray in the sky.

Here the Dormouse shook itself, and began singing in its sleep 'Twinkle, twinkle, twinkle, twinkle — ' and went on so long that they had to pinch it to make it stop. 'Well, I'd hardly finished the first verse,' said the Hatter, 'when the Queen jumped up and bawled out, "He's murdering the time! Off with his head!"' 'How dreadfully savage!' exclaimed Alice. 'And ever since that,' the Hatter went on in a mournful tone, 'he won't do a thing I ask! It's always six o'clock now.' A bright idea came into Alice's head. 'Is that the reason so many tea-things are put out here?' she asked.

'Is that the way you manage?' Alice asked. The Hatter shook his head mournfully. 'Not I!' he replied. 'We quarrelled last March — just before he went mad, you know — ' (pointing with his tea spoon at the March Hare,) ' — it was at the great concert given by the Queen of Hearts, and I had to sing

'Yes, that's it,' said the Hatter with a sigh: 'it's always tea-time, and we've no time to wash the things between whiles.'

"Twinkle, twinkle, little bat! How I wonder what you're at!" You know the song, perhaps?' 'I've heard something like it,' said Alice. 'It goes on, you know,' the Hatter continued,



'Then you keep moving round, I suppose?' said Alice.

Alice gently remarked; 'they'd have been ill.' 'So they were,' said the Dormouse; very ill.'

'Exactly so,' said the Hatter: 'as the things get used up.'

Alice tried to fancy to herself what such an extraordinary ways of living would be like, but it puzzled her too much, so she went on: 'But why did they live at the bottom of a well?'

'But what happens when you come to the beginning again?' Alice ventured to ask. 'Suppose we change the subject,' the March Hare interrupted, yawning. 'I'm getting tired of this. I vote the young lady tells us a story.' 'I'm afraid I don't know one,' said Alice, rather alarmed at the proposal. 'Then the Dormouse shall!' they both cried. 'Wake up, Dormouse!' And they pinched it on both sides at once.

'Take some more tea,' the March Hare said to Alice, very earnestly. 'I've had nothing yet,' Alice replied in an offended tone, 'so I can't take more.' 'You mean you can't take less,' said the Hatter: 'it's very easy to take more than nothing.' 'Nobody asked your opinion,' said Alice.

The Dormouse slowly opened his eyes. 'I wasn't asleep,' he said in a hoarse, feeble voice: 'I heard every word you fellows were saying.' 'Tell us a story!' said the March Hare. 'Yes, please do!' pleaded Alice. 'And be quick about it,' added the Hatter, 'or you'll be asleep again before it's done.' 'Once upon a time there were three little sisters,' the Dormouse began in a great hurry; 'and their names were Elsie, Lacie, and Tillie; and they lived at the bottom of a well — ' 'What did they live on?' said Alice, who always took a great interest in questions of eating and drinking. 'They lived on treacle,' said the Dormouse, after thinking a minute or two. 'They couldn't have done that, you know,'

'Who's making personal remarks now?' the Hatter asked triumphantly. Alice did not quite know what to say to this: so she helped herself to some tea and bread-and-butter, and then turned to the Dormouse, and repeated her question. 'Why did they live at the bottom of a well?' The Dormouse again took a minute or two to think about it, and then said, 'It was a treacle-well.' 'There's no such thing!' Alice was beginning very angrily, but the Hatter and the March Hare went 'Sh! sh!' and the Dormouse sulkily remarked, 'If you can't be civil, you'd better finish the story for yourself.' No, please go on!' Alice said very humbly; 'I won't interrupt again. I dare say there may be one.' One, indeed!' said the Dormouse indignantly. Â



However, he consented to go on. 'And so these three little sisters — they were learning to draw, you know — ' 'What did they draw?' said Alice, quite forgetting her promise. 'Treacle,' said the Dormouse, without considering at all this time. 'I want a clean cup,' interrupted the Hatter: 'let's all move one place on.' He moved on as he spoke, and the Dormouse followed him: the March Hare moved into the Dormouse's place, and Alice rather unwillingly took the place of the March Hare. The Hatter was the only one who got any advantage from the change: and Alice was a good deal worse off than before, as the March Hare had just upset the milk-jug into his plate.

manner of things — everything that begins with an M — ' 'Why with an M?' said Alice. 'Why not?' said the March Hare. Alice was silent. The Dormouse had closed its eyes by this time, and was going off into a doze; but, on being pinched by the Hatter, it woke up again with a little shriek, and went on: ' — that begins with an M, such as mouse-traps, and the moon, and memory, and muchness — you know you say things are "much of a muchness" — did you ever see such a thing as a drawing of a muchness?' 'Really, now you ask me,' said Alice, very much confused, 'I don't think — ' 'Then you shouldn't talk,' said the Hatter.

Alice did not wish to offend the Dormouse again, so she began very cautiously: 'But I don't understand. Where did they draw the treacle from?' 'You can draw water out of a water-well,' said the Hatter; 'so I should think you could draw treacle out of a treacle-well — eh, stupid?' 'But they were in the well,' Alice said to the Dormouse, not choosing to notice this last remark.

This piece of rudeness was more than Alice could bear: she got up in great disgust, and walked off; the Dormouse fell asleep instantly, and neither of the others took the least notice of her going, though she looked back once or twice, half hoping that they would call after her: the last time she saw them, they were trying to put the Dormouse into the teapot.

'Of course they were', said the Dormouse; ' — well in.' This answer so confused poor Alice, that she let the Dormouse go on for some time without interrupting it. 'They were learning to draw,' the Dormouse went on, yawning and rubbing its eyes, for it was getting very sleepy; 'and they drew all




SPECIALIST INDUSTRY ADVICE AND METHODS FROM DIVERSE CREATIVE PRACTITIONERS FOR RUNNING AN ARTS EVENT WITHIN A LIBRARY SETTING When devising a project around a theme it is key to embed diversity and inclusion into the project from the beginning. It should not be an afterthought. Think carefully about the practitioners that you could work with. What are their art forms and specialties? Do they know more than you about diversity, at least within a particular context? Trust them, and collaborate to embed ideas into the project that not only fulfil aims but which are also exciting, inclusive and accessible.



Inclusivity is my Well-Being. UNKNOWN



WORKING WITH THE VISUALLY IMPAIRED COMMUNITY Everyday in the UK, 250 people start to lose their sight, and one in every five people will live with sight loss in their lifetime. Sight loss is a condition which affects people of all ages. The definition of visual impairment is a decrease in the ability to see to a certain degree that causes problems not fixable by usual means, such as glasses. Blindness is the state of being unable to see due to injury, disease or genetic condition. Totally blind refers to a complete loss of sight. The Royal National Institute of Blind People have recorded statistics which state that 4.1 million people will be affected by sight loss in the UK by 2050. They list the main causes of sight loss as: Uncorrected refracted error (39%) Age-related macular degeneration (23%) Cataract (19%) Glaucoma (7%) Diabetic eye disease (5%) People with a visual impairment have been identified as a group who are at particular risk of social isolation and loneliness. For most people, being told you have a visual impairment that can't be treated can be difficult to come to terms with. Some people go through a process similar to bereavement, where they experience a range of emotions including shock, anger, and denial, before eventually coming to accept their condition. Statistics taken from Royal National Institute of Blind People -



WENDY DAWS (BEM) Wendy Daws studied BA(Hons) Three Dimensional Crafts at the University of Brighton. She designs, creates and delivers sustainable projects for marginalised groups, specialising in identifying opportunities for large scale participatory art projects. She has extensive experience working with all abilities and generations. Wendy works across sectors: Arts, Heritage, Public Heath, Local Authority and Education, and collaborates with many arts organisations, always with the emphasis to empower others. Wendy believes that art is for all, regardless of age, ability or background. Her dissertation ‘The Value of Touch – Blind Alphabet C and Museum Approaches to Visually Impaired Visitors’ feeds directly into her art practice. In 2018 she was awarded the British Empire Medal (BEM) from The Queen as part of the New Year’s Honours List for her voluntary services to visually impaired people in North Kent.



THE CLASSICS PRESENTS THE MAD HATTERS TACTILE TABLECLOTH: EXPLORE ALICE'S ADVENTURES WITH VISUAL ARTIST WENDY DAWS In this three-hour drop in session Wendy Daws led a professional community workshop which had a focus on visual/ tactile arts to make it accessible to the visually impaired. Participants were able to create, draw and mount a tactile Alice inspired themed drawing of their choice to take home. They also contributed to a giant community led tactile tablecloth, embossed with colourful squares which contained their choice of drawn motifs and characters from the book. Wendy collected the embossed squares and created a giant community Alice in Wonderland tablecloth for the installation reveal. Ages: All ages welcome Access: This workshop was accessible to the visually impaired and had a British Sign Language interpreter present: Christopher Sacre.

METHODS USED BY WENDY DAWS FOR THE INCLUSION OF VISUALLY IMPAIRED PARTICIPANTS The Alice Tactile Tablecloth was an absolute joy to think about and to deliver. From my research, I knew the story but I revisited it again. Knowing that I would be working with the sight impaired groups and the wider public, I knew that the embossing foil would be really exciting for all to use. People were able to make their mark on it, and if they couldn’t see it, they could feel it. For Alice I envisioned a checkered tablecloth but also a tactile table cloth. They learnt different techniques to write backwards on the foils, so the design was shown correctly the right side up. The techniques used then left an embossed pattern on the foils to create a patchwork. On a day to day basis I have a toolkit with me at all times that can cater for any surprise. I carry with me soft mats called ‘Jelly Mats’ and German film, to cater for sight loss groups. These tools enable participants to feel what they are creating. I am able to buy these jelly mats from the Royal National Institute of Blind People ( I have also worked with people who have Dementia. I treat everybody the same. For people with sight loss and dementia I will often slow down my activity with them, ensuring that they sit in the same seat every time they attend a workshop, and I always remind them about the activity that we did at the last session.



An enjoyable activity with my toddler - something different and rewarding.



TOP TIPS to ensure that diversity inclusion is present for visually impaired audiences and participants when running an artistic event within a library setting.

1. TIP ONE Signpost a staff member at the entrance to greet attendees and direct them to the area where the workshop will be taking place. Ensure that organisations running the event and the owners of the building know that Guide Dogs are accessibility dogs and are allowed into the building.

2. TIP TWO Always make sure that there are no trip hazards. All large items such as bags, should be kept under the tables or in a safe place away from everyone’s feet.

3. TIP THREE When someone asks for directions within the venue, please do not state ‘over there’ and point. This is not helpful to someone who is partially sighted because they will not be able to see where 'over there' is. Instead provide clear directions and instructions e.g ‘It is X yards / steps in front of you then turn to your left'. It is important to give specific directions.

4. TIP FOUR If any refreshments are distributed during the event, please make sure that they are given out in solid coloured mugs / beakers / cups, and not in clear plastic cups. The clear plastic cups are very light and not easy to see if you are partially sighted. If someone tries to reach for it, the plastic cup will tip over very easily, spilling water everywhere.

5. TIP FIVE When running workshops ensure that you have contrasting colours on the table. Place a larger sheet of black or brightly coloured paper at the bottom and lay a white sheet of paper on the top to provide attendees with contrasting borders. This will enable them to see where they are working and to locate the white paper easily. Lay out the station with everything that the attendee needs for the activity in bright pots, without overcrowding the table. Keep the materials close to hand to enable independent working.





WORKING WITH THE DEAF COMMUNITY Deafness, tinnitus and hearing loss is a major public health issue that affects over 11 million people in the UK – that’s more than one in six of us. There are four different levels of hearing loss, defined by the quietest sound that you are able to hear, measured in decibels (dB).

Mild hearing loss • Quietest sound: 25-39dB • Can sometimes make following speech difficult, particularly in noisy situations or for long periods of time. People start avoiding social situations. Moderate hearing loss • Quietest sound: 40-69dB • Often have difficulty following speech without hearing aids. Likely to avoid most or all social situations. Severe hearing loss • Quietest sound: 70-94dB • Usually need to lipread or use sign language, even with hearing aids. May be eligible for cochlear implants. Profound deafness • Quietest sound: 95dB • Usually need to lipread or use sign language. Hearing aids often not helpful, may benefit from cochlear implants.

People with hearing loss face barriers in their everyday lives. They can find it difficult to differentiate between speech and other noise, so background music or poor acoustics in restaurants and bars can make it hard to have a social life outside the home. Plus, a lack of deafaware staff can make interacting and accessing services a frustrating, or even humiliating, experience.



Hearing loss is a life-changing condition that affects people 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It is an invisible problem that can have a devastating effect on relationships, education, and job prospects. Hearing loss is linked to isolation, depression, and cognitive decline. People who are deaf or have hearing loss are more likely to be unemployed, denied opportunities at work, or forced into early retirement. Hearing loss can make the risk of developing dementia between two and five times more likely.

Specified by country approximately 9.2 million people in England, 945,000 people in Scotland, 575,500 people in Wales and 287,500 people in Northern Ireland have a hearing loss. It tends to be more common in older populations: 75% of the people affected are above the age of 60.

Wales 5.2%

N. Ireland 2.6%

Scotland 8.6%

England 83.6% Statistics taken from Hear It Organisation



CHRISTOPHER SACRE Christopher Sacre studied BA(Hons) Fine Art Sculpture in Wolverhampton and has been a visual artist and arts workshop facilitator since 2000. He specialises in providing workshops and arts activities that are fully accessible to deaf people and their families, and supporting other facilitators to improve the accessibility of their provision at galleries, museums and other creative events. SEE and CREATE was initiated and led by Christopher. The aim of the sessions is to provide fun, creative events where everyone can participate on an equal footing. This is especially important for families who use both British Sign Language (BSL) and spoken English, as it can help bring family members closer together through joint participation, helping deaf families meet and share their experiences.




Diversity is at the forefront of my mind when planning any event or workshop. I am keen on collaborating with other artists who work with specific groups. I have collaborated with Wendy for this reason and have successfully included d/Deaf, hearing impaired and blind/visually impaired people together with children and adults who are from a variety of social groups. For the workshop I clearly introduced myself, stating who I was and that I was working in partnership with Wendy. I explained to the participants that I am Deaf and that the workshop will be delivered in BSL or spoken English. I ensured that the workshop was visual at all times through demonstrations and examples. I mixed the participants and did not segregate individuals due to their disability or needs. I always believe that all participants are there to learn new skills and all are to be treated equally.



TOP TIPS to ensure that diversity inclusion is present for deaf audiences and participants when running an artistic event within a library setting.

1. TIP ONE Participate in Deaf awareness training prior to the event.

2. TIP TWO Employ a Deaf BSL artist to facilitate the event and have a BSL Interpreter present as well if necessary.

3. TIP THREE Consider the environment the event is being held in, in terms of; sufficient lighting, noise levels and distractions, and if any suitable equipment has been provided such as a loop system or a palantypist as it shouldn’t be assumed all d/Deaf people communicate through sign language.

4. TIP FOUR The library setting should have a welcoming and friendly approach and be as visual as possible.

5. TIP FIVE Promotional materials and handouts should be clear, using plain English (or other languages), and if instructions are provided then consider having the tasks broken down into a step by step guide with as many images to demonstrate as possible.



WORKING WITH SPECIAL EDUCATIONAL NEEDS AND DISABILITIES (SEND) Special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) can affect a person’s ability to learn, including their: behaviour or ability to socialise reading and writing ability to understand things concentration levels physical ability There are many different types of learning difficulties. Some of the more well known types are dyslexia, attention deficithyperactivity disorder (ADHD), dyspraxia and dyscalculia. A person can have one, or a combination. There are also different types of learning disabilities, which can be mild, moderate, severe or profound. These can include difficulty around the areas of understanding new or complex information, learning new skills or coping independently. In all cases a learning disability is lifelong. It can be difficult to diagnose a mild learning disability as the individual will often mix well with others and will be able to cope with most everyday tasks. However, they may need support in other areas of their life such as filling out forms. People with a severe learning disability or profound and multiple learning disability (PMLD), will need more care and support with areas such as mobility, personal care and communication. People with a moderate learning disability may also need support in these areas, but not always. Information taken from Mencap -



STRANGEFACE Strangeface bring mask and puppet theatre to audiences in Kent, as well as regionally, nationally and internationally. They are a theatre company committed to producing an intimate fusion of mask, puppetry and live music. They aim to make their work as accessible as possible by offering work that appeals across generations, and travel to venues across the UK ranging from grand old theatres to tiny village halls. Since 2005 Strangeface has provided masks internationally for schools, colleges, drama therapists, youth theatres, workshop practitioners and theatre companies; endorsing the idea that mask theatre allows an adult to see with a child’s eyes and imagination. The company has also had particular success working with additional needs groups and those concerned with mental health and depression. Their practice is also influenced by research into the application of Chaos Theory to semiotics and cognitive theory.



THE CLASSICS PRESENTS THE MANY DIFFERENT FACES OF ALICE: EXPLORE ALICE’S ADVENTURES THROUGH MASKS WITH CREATIVE PRACTITIONERS, STRANGEFACE In this three-hour session, Strangeface Theatre Company led two professional community workshops which had a focus on mask and theatre. Participants joined Strangeface to explore the different characters in Alice through a mask design and decoration session. Strangeface worked with them to examine characters from the book, helping to bring them to life and enabling people to take away their very own Alice inspired mask character. Ages: All ages welcome. Access: This workshop was accessible, suitable for SEND participants, and had a BSL interpreter present.

METHODS USED BY STRANGEFACE FOR THE INCLUSION OF SEND PARTICIPANTS Strangeface has previously been invited to work with inclusive groups on numerous occasions. Making and using mask and puppets as tools enables people to shine in different ways. It is possible to make full masks where no text is required for performance, though very clearly defined thought-processes and choreography is essential. A key skill for using mask and puppets is empathy and we highlight this in all our sessions from the shortest introduction to a six week residency. We provided durable plastic hand finished masks that could be used by many people for the Alice table installation. In the community open access workshop we adapted the classic Tenniel illustrations from the book to become templates to decorate. We brought copies of the book to the session and shared the character descriptions and our thoughts about archetypes. We had a range of examples to draw on from fairy stories to Shakespeare, pantomime, to The Simpsons! The workshop did not rely on anyone having to respond to this discussion – all those taking part were able to let their imaginations run wild! We provided a big box of materials for all ages and abilities to use whatever they wanted- from chunky pens to fine-liners and art collage papers, to sensory craft kits of sequins, feathers and pom-poms. We made sure that the ratio of adult to child, or carer to SEND participant was appropriate and comfortable.



Great accessible way to introduce people to creative arts and removing barriers to join in. Perfect type of location for this kind of event and we will read the story of Alice tonight!Â



TOP TIPS to ensure that diversity inclusion is present for SEND participants when running an artistic event within a library setting.

1. TIP ONE It is definitely worth looking at websites like to hear how people experience access first hand, to avoid making assumptions about what might and might not be important.

2. TIP TWO Use Plain English/language as a matter of course for all.

3. TIP THREE Using materials that are easy to buy or find means that everyone can repeat activities if they have enjoyed them. Let people know where materials were sourced.

4. TIP FOUR Think about interesting approaches to marketing that are helpful to SEND participants and which act as a shake up for you! Easy to read information and filming accessible routes to the venue on a phone camera are simple but effective methods.

5. TIP FIVE It sounds obvious but for the period of that session be 100% present! Listen with all of your senses to how people are responding to the activity, and make sessions a reasonable length of time in order to have that focussed energy and to ensure that everyone gets a break.





WORKING WITH CHILDREN People working with children tend to be nurturing, caring and have a genuine interest in each individual child's wellbeing, development and learning through play. They take pride in children's achievements and encourage them to flourish and grow. They play an integral role in helping them develop through fun activities. Taking part in library arts activities gives children the opportunity to: Express themselves and explore language freely Explore feelings and find out about themselves and others Develop co-operation, care, consideration and control Exercise choice and make decisions Use mathematical language and develop mathematical concepts Develop a range of motor skills Use their skills to make the things needed for their activity and adapt as necessary Explore a fantasy world of their own creation The arts help to nurture imagination and give a child a sense of adventure. Exploration is very important to a child's development, it is an integral part of childhood and supports their learning journey too. Children can develop many skills through the power of arts. They may develop their language skills, emotions, creativity and social skills.



NATASHA STEER Natasha Steer, the maker of Creatabot, is a socially engaged creative practitioner, specialising in using creativity to connect communities and improve wellbeing. She runs various activities in the North Kent community and designs bespoke creative workshops for all ages. Often these workshops will be based around wellbeing and promoting self-care. Creatabot has grown to become an organisation that is regularly commissioned for community engaged creative, heritage, health and arts activities. Workshops can include anything from hands on creative workshops to community consultations, or the benefits of urban innovation.



THE MAD HATTER’S COLOURFUL CROCKERY: EXPLORE ALICE’S ADVENTURES WITH CREATIVE PRACTITIONER, NATASHA STEER FROM CREATABOT In this three-hour session, Natasha Steer, of Creatabot Creative Workshops, led a professional community workshop which had a focus on bespoke creative arts and crafts. Participants joined Natasha to paint teacups and saucers that were fit for any Mad Hatters Tea party, decorating them with their favourite characters, themes, symbols and colours from the book. The pieces of keepsake crockery were taken home to bake in the oven and used again and again. Ages: All ages welcome. Access: This workshop was accessible, suitable for children and SEND participants, and had a BSL interpreter present.

METHODS USED BY NATASHA STEER FOR THE INCLUSION OF CHILD PARTICIPANTS In order to ensure that the ‘Mad Hatters Colourful Crockery’ workshop was accessible there was a lot of planning involved to ensure that the session would enable the participant to create something they were happy with, even if they were not very creative. To do this I created hand cut stencils that were flexible enough to wrap around crockery so that they could be templates for designs. In this way the session also became very tactile and opened up the opportunity for team work within families. Also, in setting the workshop up, I made sure people were facing each other and that there were examples of crockery on the tables to provide ideas for the young participants. Lyrici Arts provided an interpreter, if needed, and for those who were visually impaired the session was very tactile, which meant that they would be able to create and decorate the plates and cups with just a little support - enabling them to maintain their independence. As a creative practitioner I do all that I can to ensure that my activities are accessible to all. If the space is not very accessible I ensure that this is communicated when listing my events. Where spaces are accessible it is still important to consider the needs of individuals, there could be those who are visually impaired and therefore need extra light and/or a magnifying glass, those who are deaf who will benefit from an interpreter. There are other forms of accessibility to consider too, such as language or even those who cannot read. Being able to have equipment to hand which would be of assistance - or knowing where to find it - can be very useful and can really be of encouragement for participants. Essentially, inclusion for me is about showing good hospitality to people and ensuring they are happy, comfortable and able to participate.



It was great to spend time doing something fun and creative with my young sonGood bonding time - Excellent session and an engaging presenter



TOP TIPS to ensure that diversity inclusion is present for younger participants when running an artistic event within a library setting.

1. TIP ONE Provide examples - examples not only help young people to understand very quickly what is happening and what the aim of the activity is, but also helps them to develop their own ideas and creativity. Participants will often want to put their own angle on the finished result and seeing an example helps them to challenge themselves. Very often young people will let their creativity run wild when encouraged to do so, which can result in some incredible results!

2. TIP TWO Make sure children can face each other and easily mingle together - not only is it very difficult to facilitate an activity where young people are sitting on separate tables, but also in terms of development of social skills, being able to interact with peers is vital and can be very beneficial. At the same time, be prepared to provide a quiet table to those with additional needs or mental health requirements who require more space if things get busy.

3. TIP THREE Try to enable young people to be as independent as possible, providing the right atmosphere for them to be able to be freely creative but with support to hand if required. Often as adults we want to assist or direct a young person in the way they do something, but unless they are causing disruption, creativity is a brilliant way for young people to express themselves, therefore they should be encouraged to do so freely. In turn, being freely creative benefits mental wellbeing, so should be encouraged! Supporting independence also means thinking of abilities and disabilities - such as space for wheelchairs, provision of additional ways to communicate and language barriers.



4. TIP FOUR Provide instructions when possible and necessary - this can help young people to feel independent in their learning if they want to be. Ideally these should be picture or diagrams - a lot of suppliers will provide craft kits with diagrams on assembling, and there is always our great friend the internet to find step by step images. If someone does not understand the steps you have explained, do not keep repeating the same steps to them, take a breath and think of another way to explain what you are asking the person to do. We do not all think and learn in the same way - remember the four learning styles: visual, auditory, reading and kinaesthetic.

5. TIP FIVE Do not forget about people with additional needs. If the space becomes too busy or chaotic then they may be feeling extremely anxious and stressed. Ensure there is enough room for the amount of participants you expect. Everyone benefits from a calm space, and although difficult with some young children, keeping them engaged means that they are less likely to cause disruption to the activity. Sometimes younger siblings can cause disturbance, so provide some basic activities such as pencils and paper and they are likely to keep themselves more entertained.





LETS ALL DANCE Let’s All Dance are a South London dance organisation who present a wide range of high quality theatrical productions, dance classes and educational workshops within London and the South East. They aim to bring the best professional dancers to adults and children all over England. Let's All Dance believe that the beauty of dance transcends all words. They believe that the relationship of the body with other bodies and with the surrounding space is endlessly fascinating, and that the shared experience of artists and live audience is transformative and exhilarating. The company have performed at several prestigious venues and events, including Cornerstone Arts Centre, The Marlowe Theatre in Canterbury, Electric Theatre in Guildford, The Hawth Theatre, Crawley, The Mill Arts Centre in Banbury, Canary Wharf in London, Lyrici Arts' Paint The Town Festival in Medway, the Hazlitt Theatre in Maidstone. Leicester Square Theatre and Sadler's Wells Theatre in London.



ALICE IN WONDERLAND BY LET’S ALL DANCE: A FAMILY FRIENDLY BALLET Let’s All Dance made three guest appearances in North Kent Libraries during March 2019 with this fabulous family favourite. Stunning dancing, much loved characters and super costumes brought this famous tale to life in this magical ballet production. Audiences joined Alice as she entered the curiouser and curiouser world of the White Rabbit, Queen of Hearts and Mad Hatter. They took part in a photo opportunity with dancers after the show. Optional post show ballet classes were available to participate in. Ages: Suitable for ages 2-11 years, families, and children with additional needs. Access: This show was accessible, suitable for SEND participants, and had a BSL interpreter present.

METHODS USED BY LET'S ALL DANCE FOR THE INCLUSION OF SEND, THE DISABLED COMMUNITY AND CHILDREN When designing all our shows we aim to adhere to our ethos to inspire, educate and entertain. The arts should always incorporate all 3 strands and aim to help people be the best they can be, deliver important messages and also be lots of fun. We know that engaging young people, with and without SEND, relies on a crystal-clear story, great characters and performers, and stunning visuals. Many people tell us that their children have short attention spans but they are mesmerised by our shows. We believe this is partly due to the fact that we never dumb down our shows. Children are a highly discerning audience and deserve the same quality and excellent standards as adults, and young people with SEND are no different; everyone wants to watch great theatre. Our workshops work on the same principles. We are careful to structure all our classes and workshops to focus on what children can already do and also introduce them to exciting and fun new ideas and skills. We are passionate in ensuring we embrace diversity in our work, both on a daily basis and in our long term planning. We recruit our professional dancers, dance teachers, event leaders, crew and admin staff from a wide range of sources including social media sites, industry websites, ballet schools and word of mouth. This ensures we reach industry professionals from many demographics, backgrounds and cultures. By visiting venues and schools in many different areas across the UK we ensure we reach children and families from diverse socio-economic backgrounds. We are especially keen to engage with young people from non-theatre going backgrounds and to give them access to enjoying and working within dance and theatre.



I can't think of a better venue to bring a book to life in. Being surrounded by books and watching ballet is fantastic. We will be looking our for future events



TOP TIPS to ensure that diversity inclusion is present for SEND, the disabled community and child participants when running an artistic event within a library setting.

1. TIP ONE The space should be clear and flat to allow wheelchairs and people with mobility issues to access the space.

2. TIP TWO The performance space should be separate from the daily activities of the library, if possible, to ensure shows are seen in their best possible form.

3. TIP THREE Information about the show should be available to young people/families, including those with SEND, before and after the event.

4. TIP FOUR Ticket prices should be affordable. Know your audience and what is reasonable for them.

5. TIP FIVE Funding should be ring-fenced for such events so that people from all backgrounds have access to the arts. To achieve this consider applying for grants or hold back a selection of concession tickets to ensure that a percentage of attendance is made available to audience members with a need.





JASMINE HASKELL The Mad Hatter’s Tea Party is one of the most iconic scenes from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and has made tea parties extremely popular with adults and children for generations; regardless of class, gender, ethnicity and culture. Jasmine Haskell is a freelance artist, designer and maker. Her skills lie in painting, sculpture, illustration, theatrical design, sewing, scenic art, moulding and casting. She believes in the power of curiosity and her work often involves organic forms, with emphasis on movement and capturing emotional sensitivity.



THE MAD HATTERS TEA PARTY: A LIFE SIZED INSTALLATION AND COMMUNITY PARTY WITH CAKE AND TEA Jasmine was commissioned to create four life-sized animal installation characters, seated and displayed alongside the community workshops items which were made for the Mad Hatters Tea party (colourful embossed tablecloth, hand painted crockery and character inspired masks). Participants met four life sized character installations from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland: The White Rabbit, The March Hare, The Cheshire Cat and The Dormouse. Participants joined us at The Mad Hatter’s Tea Party to marvel at the creations, to eat cake and drink tea, to place on a Tweedle Dee, Tweedle Dum or Queen of Hearts mask and to take a picture of themselves seated at the table. Ages: All ages welcome. Access: Tactile tablecloth and animal characters suitable for the visually impaired.

METHODS USED BY JASMINE HASKELL FOR THE INCLUSION OF DIVERSITY WITHIN HER DESIGN When designing the animals, I wanted them to be approachable both in physical appearance and texture. The book is surreal, open to interpretation, and often incredibly dark, and I wanted the outcome to be friendly and not intimidating - the Cheshire Cat in particular is often represented with a big, menacing mouth full of teeth. Contrary to this, ‘Alice’ interpretations can also be generically cartoony, which in my artistic practice doesn’t translate into a style that feels ‘real’ whilst also being warm. As such, I designed the animals to be anatomically believable, but covered in familiar fabrics in a patchwork design which reflected the contours of their bodies. They also have fairly neutral but kind expressions. This makes them pleasing to look at and touch for all groups, without being overwhelming. I decided to sculpt the animals out of upholstery foam before covering them in fabric because unlike traditional sculpture materials such as clay or paper mache, you can hold the animals, squeeze them, familiarise yourself with their presence, bump shoulders with them - and it’s all positive. There’s nothing unpleasant to be felt on the animals. They’re just as warm and tactile as they appear to be.



Beautiful! A lovely visual display. Lots to talk about with our two year old. Thank you!Â



TOP TIPS for creatives and library staff to find diverse artists to collaborate with within a library setting.

1. TIP ONE Be encouraged to get out there in the world! There is so much to see and so many creative people to meet. Humans are social creatures and we thrive off interaction. This also opens you up to experiencing diversity in your creative relationships.

2. TIP TWO We are living in a digital era and every individual or business should have a presence on social media to market themselves and network. Being accessible online also makes you more universally accessible - some individuals may be limited in how long they can go out for or how much energy they may have, others may find some environments difficult or overwhelming and so forth. A digital presence also means that people can get to know you before they come to an event, which may help to put them at ease.

3. TIP THREE Use Facebook, Instagram and Linkedin to find artists to collaborate with. These websites act as a springboard for viewing work and getting in contact with artists. They encompass enormous breadth in the age, gender and wider diversity spectrum of the users.

4. TIP FOUR Ensure your own website attracts creatives and also showcases what your organisation delivers. There are some great companies online that can make designing a website a very straightforward process. Remember that some creatives no longer use a classic CV format, instead they link people to their website where they can see a gallery of work, previous experience and contact details.

5. TIP FIVE Keep being creative in the library setting. Art has massive benefits to mental health. Workshops and other creative endeavours can open you up to new processes and realisations with minimal risk involved, and if you’re leading them it’s incredibly rewarding and inspiring to see what can be created by all kinds of people.






RECOMMENDATIONS FROM LEADING INDUSTRY ORGANISATIONS FOR OPERATING WITHIN LIBRARIES IN AN ARTS CONTEXT Upskilling yourself is important so do not be afraid to reach out to trusted organisations or creatives who are generous enough to share advice and best practice for new ways to embed diverse methods into arts programmes or venues. Battersea Arts Centre, Cambridgeshire County Council, Farnham Maltings and Wendy Daws were kind enough to share five of their industry tops tips:



Accessibility is being able to get in the building. Diversity is getting invited to the table. Inclusion is having a voice at the table. Belonging is having your voice heard at the table! UNKNOWN




Battersea Arts Centre is a beautiful old town hall in South London, consisting of 80 rooms, and which welcomes over 160,000 people to its building every year. People go there to be creative, see a show, explore local heritage, visit the Scratch Bar, play or relax. Battersea Arts Centre rely on the concept of ‘Scratch’- a way of working to inspire people to take creative risks to shape the future. For those who can’t make it to Battersea, the National Portfolio Organisation also take their shows across the UK and the world. Scratch has been adopted as far afield as Sydney and New York, and Battersea Arts Centre has successfully sparked new approaches to creativity across the globe. To date, they have inspired the local community to get creative with around 5000 young people and children participating in workshops yearly, and have worked with over 400 artists to put on over 650 performances and tour at least 12 shows and projects each year. Battersea Arts Centre described how they approach their concept of 'Scratch', and how they feed it into their practices to obtain fresh concepts and new diverse partners.



TOP TIPS Scratch is Battersea Arts Centre's (BAC) method of trying new ways to test ideas with the public, get feedback and try again. It is a safe way to learn and fail, through method, process, sharing and testing. The ideas become stronger, encouraging people to take creative risks. Projects start small, then grow, with people learning as they go. Scratch is used by artists to make theatre, by young people to develop entrepreneurial ideas, and by local people who want to become creative.

1. TIP ONE At BAC we have bedrooms where artists can stay on site while developing their work. Do you have meeting rooms and spaces to hire, where artists can pay a small fee during the day for artist development? This can help to assist with your core costs, and portray the library as a place where creativity is used to support and develop work from the arts sector.


3. TIP THREE Try new ways of audience development and engagement. When engaging with library users and audiences use our ‘Scratch’ method for arts programming. When trying out new things, start off on a small scale and be open to ask for feedback to develop the ideas. This will help you to establish what your local community wants to see more of and what arts activities creatives enjoy hosting.

4. TIP FOUR Think about how you can build on future ideas, so that they can grow into quality projects for the artists, libraries and audiences in the communities.

5. TIP FIVE Don’t not be afraid of the word ‘fail’. Remember that processes are about trial and error, and failure is another method of learning. This is a positive way to evaluate how your organisation can learn and improve things moving forward.

Use our ‘Scratch’ method to try out new ways of engaging with artists and practitioners to build your database. Work with creatives to publicly test their art form. Perhaps they could have a short residency with the library service by offering workshops and other events to generate income.




Cambridgeshire County Council were awarded National Portfolio Organisation funding from Arts Council England to run ‘The Library Presents’ in partnership with Babylon ARTS from 2018-2022. The Library Presents’ brings a high quality, diverse selection of arts activities into the heart of villages and towns across the county. Arts activities include exhibitions, performances, dance, music, puppetry, comedy and theatre, as well as workshops in music, art, writing and performance skills. The programme aims to inspire and deliver a vibrant inclusive programme of high-quality arts activities in accessible and welcoming venues. Cambridgeshire County Council explained how they partnered with Babylon Arts to develop their successful four year arts' programme; their programming approaches to empower and engage staff and audiences, and significant learning from the project.



TOP TIPS The Library Presents are a team which work alongside Cambridgeshire library service to bring arts events across the county. The arts programme benefits the libraries by bringing new audiences to the area while keeping footfall constant. It also enables libraries to open and operate at different times, and succeeds in upskilling staff and volunteers. It is an exciting, varied and quality programme which is chosen locally. Cambridgeshire has 32 libraries and this programme is brought into 22 libraries. The libraries are transformed into cinemas, theatres, workshops, and classrooms. The programme works to a target of 120 activities per year. It is a season of activities that caters for local audiences, with people willing to travel to other events across the county.

1. TIP ONE Do not underestimate the job of promoting the events. This can be harder than most people think, and can become a challenge. There are so many different ways now to advertise events - both in printed and digital formats. What external help can you get to benefit the project?

2. TIP TWO Organise some event training for staff. Ensure that you include library volunteers to help promote, deliver and support the arts programme in the local communities.

3. TIP THREE Keep the pricing of tickets at a reasonable cost so that money does not become a barrier. Also trial things like ‘taster sessions’, so that as many people as possible can access great quality arts in the communities.

4. TIP FOUR Use arts events to create a different atmosphere and to expand people’s minds about how a library building can be used. How can you make the experience special for them? Can you offer food and drinks at the events? If you can, do you need any licenses or permits to do so? Can you move the library furniture around to create more space for the attendees and the performance? Do you need to bring in tech, props and/or different lighting to create an specific atmosphere in the library?

5. TIP FIVE Always try to collect feedback from your attendees. Ask questions such as - Why did they come along? How did they hear about the event? Also remember to think about how this data will be collected and processed to evaluate the programme overall. There's no point getting data just for its own sake.




Farnham Maltings is a trusted cultural organisation that holds National Portfolio status. Based in south west Surrey, they exist to encourage the people of Farnham and further afield to participate in, shape and understand the world in which we live. They believe that by being actively creative, connecting with others and articulating new ideas they will foster a happier, healthier and more inclusive set of communities. Farnham Maltings explained their approaches to work, how they develop an arts programme for a venue and for touring, and describe their fresh approaches to partnership work with diverse partners.




Farnham Maltings is currently working in Buckinghamshire to put theatre into community spaces like libraries and local halls. The locations need to be accessible for use by the artists and audiences. They commission artists to work with libraries to create a new piece of local work for that area. Here are their approaches to curating an arts programme.

Think about where the events will take place. What positives will this create? What challenges will this present? Are people able to find the venue and get home easily? Remember that promotion of the events is key for a successful audience turnout. Where will the advertising go to reach as many people as possible?



Start with the audience Find out what audiences go to see in their local theatres and why some people do not go. What other arts do people like to see? What are they interested in? Complete audience research and use the findings as a base to work from when curating a programme.

If the work is going to be in a non-theatre space, make the artists aware of this from the beginning. Which artists are keen to explore working in these non-theatre spaces? Do they understand the benefits and challenges that this could bring to their work? Remember to be upfront and honest about how different the performance might be in a non-theatre space.

2. TIP TWO Think about how you can start to find quality work. Do some research by finding arts organisations and artists who could be part of the programme. Ask them lots of questions about their work to see if they are a best fit. Try to see their work live to understand their ‘art form. Also think about access and if it is easy for the audience and company to use the building. Obtain and then analyse the technical specifications from the creatives. Ask if they will operate the technical aspects themselves or if a technical production company will need to be hired for the performance. Communications and expectations must be clear and met in the best possible way.

5. TIP FIVE Build in evaluation from the start of the curation process. What are the outcomes of the evaluation? Do you wish to have more visitors, new members, more book issues, or to capture the outcome experiences from the public/artists? How are you going to measure this? Will you use feedback cards, online surveys or stickers? Think about how you will use the findings and data. Finally, do not forget to say ‘thank you’ to all that were involved.




Wendy Daws demonstrated how to lead a ceramic heart workshop - giving clear instructions for staff to replicate, and described how to keep engagement levels high during the activity with discussion around the theme of the book and interaction with attendees. Staff were advised to bring writing materials with them to this session and a small selection of Alice in Wonderland books for reference. Participants were provided with sample ceramic hearts, stencils and hand held paint pens to practice the session as an attendee, and to use these materials for their own library led sessions. In the second part of the session, Wendy Daws talked with staff about how to facilitate and approach creative sessions for different age groups, how to build on ideas around craft sessions and themes, and explained where to obtain creative materials.



TOP TIPS Wendy Daws helped library staff think outside of the box during their daily practice. Advice was focused around hosting craft sessions on a limited budget, and workshop facilitating tips to help them in their role. The session also provided hands on training for the ‘Alice’ Ceramic Heart workshops that they ran in some of their branch libraries.

1. TIP ONE Always start the sessions with a short introduction. This will ensure a warm welcome and will put people at ease. Do not forget to mention your name and wear a suitable sized name badge for easy reference and to help make people feel comfortable.

2. TIP TWO Always provide extra scrap paper at the sessions. This is to ensure that attendees can begin on an even footing and it will help them to open up their creativity before the main part of the session starts. A clearly printed out list of instructions at the activity can be helpful for some attendees too. With any pens, pencils and other types of craft medias, using the paper is a good way for the attendees to ‘test’ them out. This is so they can familiarise themselves with the different types of art media and learn how to work with them.

3. TIP THREE Getting the attendees to make a mock design first using the paper is a wonderful way for participants to consider the design aspect of the art. Get the attendees to think about the sides, edges and backs of the objects when they are designing. For any attendees who are a little bit uninspired, simply drawing out shapes and lines will help to start their creative process. By getting them to come up with a few different designs, it will really enable them to explore their creative sides.

4. TIP FOUR From the selection of mock designs, ask each attendee to choose their final design choice. Ask them to use their 2D design as a guide to transfer their artwork onto the 3D piece of material where they can then finalise it with their choice of decorating materials. This will also instil confidence into participants by ironing out any potential issues beforehand.

5. TIP FIVE Watch the designs come to life. If some attendees finish before others, use simple engagement ideas to keep them occupied e.g. a mini graffiti wall in the space which uses large sheets of plain paper to create ‘a canvas wall’, colouring in sheets for younger children, and library stock for people to browse.





When producing an event in a library setting it is important to consider: Engagement activities Documentation Your producing checklist We will delve a little further into these areas during this section.



Peace requires everyone to be in the circle – wholeness, inclusion. ISABEL ALLENDE



ENGAGE, ENGAGE, ENGAGE! Your project does not just involve the one day of activity. To achieve maximum results and investment from your community and stakeholders, analyse all of the factors and angles which will drum up excitement and discussion. How can you make your project unique, diverse and inclusive? What are you doing that your local competitors have not thought about? How does this project fulfil aims and benefit future activity for your organisation and the community? Analyse the 3W’s of your project: What: What is the aim of your project? What are your motivations behind it? What is the diversity aspect you are trying to achieve? What is the analytical data that you need to record? Who: Who are the people making this project successful? Who will you collaborate with? Who will be your main point(s) of contact? Who will benefit from this project the most? Who are the artists, stakeholders and audiences you wish to nurture? Who will have access requirements and how can you embed inclusion into your project? Why: Why are you doing this project at this certain time - what do you want the project to achieve? Why are you focusing on this angle/practitioner over another? Why are the benefits necessary to your organisation or practice?

Always brainstorm the deeper topics of engagement within your project. In the case of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland deeper subjects could include:

Alice in different formats- language, large print, braille etc Lewis Carroll - other works and biographies Millinery practices (hats) and making costumes Afternoon teas and baking Animals Mental health History of the era Horology- the study and measurement of time Kings and Queens Card games and other physical games The tea party format

We chose to embed a range of themed engagement activities into our Alice project which were inclusive and catered for access requirements. For added engagement and excitement around the project we also commissioned scenographer Jasmine Haskell to create four life sized Alice in Wonderland animals for an interactive Mad Hatter’s Tea Party installation, which people could sit within and participate in photographic opportunities. Aside from the workshop activities and the touring ballet productions, we also chose to embed face painting, a tea party with cakes and drinks, enticing themed book displays and the invitation to wear fancy dress.





ADDITIONAL LIBRARY ENGAGEMENT FOR STAFF AND VOLUNTEERS AT REGULAR LIBRARY ACTIVITIES Here are some sample methods and engagement activities that Lyrici Arts used to incorporate Alice themed activities into regular library sessions. Please note that these public sessions pre-exist within the Kent Libraries service: Talk Time

Talk time groups are a great way of meeting up with old friends and making new ones. Most libraries host a weekly talk time group offering a variety of activities such as: Knit and natter Scrabble Using their services Speakers Quizzes Recreational activities Tea and chat Example library engagement activities could include: Discuss Alice Adventures in Wonderland and/ or Lewis Carroll Make a crochet hedgehog



Baby Rhyme Time

A free, fun and noisy way for under 3s to develop a love of language and a foundation for learning. Each session lasts about 20 minutes and includes the opportunity to join in with nursery rhymes and action songs. Research shows that these activities can help develop literacy and communication skills in babies and children. If participants are unable to attend a baby rhyme time session, the Words for Life website gives other ideas for similar activities: Example Library engagement activities could include: Make some cardboard craft ears for lots of little Rabbits and Hares.


Listening to stories is a great way to develop and encourage young children who are 3 years and older to read books - it's great fun! Research shows that babies and children introduced early to stories and books do better in school in later years. Example Library engagement activities could include:

you to consider books that you would never have imagined reading. Most welcome new readers or you could set your own one up. Example Library engagement activities could include: Visually Impaired Reading Groups – Audio/braille of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland or books on Lewis Carroll


Opportunities can include: supporting adult literacy reading group hosts, including audio reading groups for people who are blind or visually impaired IT Buddies - helping customers who are using library computers Example Library engagement activities could include: Meet and Practice Language Sessions with non-English language books of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, and/or books on Lewis Carroll

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (also in picture book format) is suitable for this age group. Read a book and give out colouring sheets.

Reading Groups

Reading groups are a great way of meeting people and sharing your views about books. They generate exciting debates and may lead



UNLEASH YOUR OWN CREATIVITY Using the two pieces of writing below from key moments in the book, what ideas can you conjure up for engaging activities?

The Mad Hatter is one of the key character’s in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, also appearing in the sequel ‘Alice through the Looking Glass’ by Lewis Carroll. He first meets Alice at the tea party where he is very rude and chooses to provoke her, but they soon become firm friends. FACT: Did you know that the phrase ‘Mad Hatter’ originates from the 19th century when milliners manufactured felt hats? This caused a high rate of mercury poisoning and led to dreadful heath conditions which included loss of memory, slurred speech and body tremors.

One of the scenes from Alice’s adventures in Wonderland that has been famous for over 150 years is the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party. When Alice arrives at the tea party, she meets The Mad Hatter, March Hare and the Dormouse. Alice soon becomes caught up in the silliness, riddles and actions of the Mad Hatter and the other characters. FACT: The way that Lewis Carroll wrote this scene changed the way people viewed tea parties at the time. When the book was published it started to change formal gatherings from being dull and strict with lots of etiquette rules, to light hearted occasions with tea and cake at the centre of the event.

On the following pages are a small selection of Alice themed crafts that libraries can recreate which we have taken from key moments in the book. Staff tasks and responsibilities before, during and after these sessions can include:

Promotion of the events to library customers Creating Alice themed book displays Taking photographs of the crafts, distributing participant and staff feedback forms,



ALICE’S ADVENTURES IN WONDERLAND - A HEART BOOKMARK CRAFT As Alice nears the end of her adventure through Wonderland, she meets the Queen of Hearts in her palace gardens. Hearts are a reoccurring symbol in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. What are your favourite themes and characters in the book? Overleaf we have a simple heart bookmark craft. Join us at your local library to make these easy and decorative bookmarks - a perfect way to mark what page you are on when reading Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.



EQUIPMENT Light card stock in desired colours Scissors PVA glue or hot glue gun Large coloured craft sticks Cardboard White paint (optional) Balls of coloured string or wool

DIRECTIONS 1) Trace a heart and cut it out from cardboard. You can find heart templates online or you can draw one yourself. 2) You can paint the cardboard white if you do not want to wrap them completely, or you can leave them plain. 3) Begin the wrapping process by first taping or gluing the beginning of your string to the back of the heart. Then start wrapping the string one way first. Once you’ve wrapped and covered most of your heart vertically, you can then switch to wrapping horizontally. Feel free to switch directions at any desired point. 4) Continue to wrap the string around your cardboard heart until you are satisfied with how your heart looks. Then glue your final strand to the back, ideally in the middle where your craft stick will go so it will be hidden. 5) Now glue (adults recommended for the hot glue gun) your craft stick to to the back of your heart to finalise your bookmark and leave it to dry.



ALICE’S ADVENTURES IN WONDERLAND - MAKING TIME: A POCKET WATCH CRAFT The White Rabbit and his pocket watch appear at the beginning of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. The pocket watch is a symbol of how precious time is. The rabbit appears to be very smartly dressed but is worried as he is running late. When looking at the time on his grand pocket watch, he panics and runs off saying, "Oh dear! Oh dear! I shall be too late!" Alice becomes curious, so she follows the White Rabbit into the magical world of Wonderland. Overleaf we have a simple craft demonstrating how to make a pocket watch, so you will never be late again. Join us at your local library to make these easy and decorative timepieces.



EQUIPMENT Light card stock Scissors PVA glue or hot glue gun Decorative stickers or pens (optional) Brass paper fasteners and a hole punch Wool (optional)

DIRECTIONS 1) Cut shaped pieces of thin cardboard and construction paper into the shape of the watch and the clock hands. Use a circular object as a pocket watch template guide. 2) Glue some coloured paper onto the back of the cardboard piece. 3) Glue white circles onto the front, or inside of the watch, so that participants can draw numbers onto one circle to become a watch face. 4) Sketch little portraits onto the other white circle. 5) Poke a hole in the centre of the watch face. Attach the constructed paper hands through the hole with a metal fastener. Ensure that you cover the the back of the metal fastener with clear tape to prevent any possible future injuries. Encase the hands in clear tape before punching the holes into the watch face to ensure that they do not rip and remain loose so that they are easier to turn. 6) Fold the watches closed. 7) Optional: Finally, punch a hole in the top of the watches, for watch chains – and attach a single chain of loose or plaited wool.





DOCUMENTING YOUR EVENT: PHOTOGRAPHY A good photographer has the power to capture the essence of your project in a more powerful way than words ever could. Take your time to build a rapport with one or two photographers that you trust to capture your vision. Remember to brief your photographer at the beginning of every event that you book them for. You may have worked with them previously but treat each event like a new opportunity. Take a look at the surroundings together - the venue (including inside and the outside), the activities taking place and the static objects that occupy your surroundings. If your project involves diversity and inclusion ask your photographer to capture a range of images that cover all demographics. These images can be used as reporting proof that your project has achieved the aims it set out to deliver. Once your photographer has been briefed try not to micromanage them, as tempting as this may feel sometimes. Trust that the photographer will capture angles and moments that you have not thought of before. You will be astounded when you receive your images back. We worked with company photographer, Alison Lewis Photography, for The Classics. Her images are portrayed throughout this toolkit and we are sure that you will agree that she captured the vision of the project beautifully.



ALISON LEWIS PHOTOGRAPHY Alison Lewis has spent the last decade learning her craft in various professional studios and working as a freelance photographer, often working alongside Lyrici Arts to capture key moments from their arts projects. Over the years Alison has also enjoyed working with many different people and capturing a wide range of photography for weddings, corporate events, arts projects, charity events and more. Alison has a real love and passion for the craft, seeking to make people happy through the mode of photography. She believes in the importance of capturing the 'real you' and in ensuring that her photographs portray natural moments and highlight personalities and relationships. Her ethos captures the essence of the event with professionalism and vibrancy.



ALICE'S ADVENTURES IN WONDERLAND: CREATIVE DOCUMENTATION Alison was commissioned to provide photographic services throughout the whole of the Alice project. Sessions included documenting the professional workshop activities, face painting sessions, ballet shows, dance workshops, the tea party, the installation, and private Continued Professional Development days for library staff. Alison was also asked to capture the exterior and interior of the unique library buildings, and the scope of reactions and diversity of all who were involved with the project.

METHODS USED BY ALISON LEWIS PHOTOGRAPHY WHEN DOCUMENTING CREATIVE SESSIONS Over the years I have had the pleasure of working with many different people from all walks of life. For the Alice events I observed that each library had its own qualities and layout. When walking in to meet the organisers, Lyrici Arts, I asked where the stage was being set up, how many were attending, and to be introduced to the dancers and creative artists. From this I could determine exactly how many areas I needed to photograph, and at what times. With the face painting and creative arts tables it was so important to talk with parents and make them feel comfortable. I asked them if they were happy for their children to be photographed and Lyrici Arts gave them the permission slips to sign as proof of consent. Once I knew where the dancers were performing I could speak with them to understand which parts of the show would be the best to capture, and where I should position myself for the best moments. With the help of the library staff I could determine where I would get the best view, for example in one library I discovered that I could stand higher on the staircase to view the crowds. To capture a diverse range of moments I use my friendly personality to chat with everyone. Communication is the key. Another aspect I come across is differences in cultural backgrounds and religions. I have been in a few places of worship taking photographs of very personal events. It’s so important to be respectful, to ask questions, and to research what happens during these cultural ceremonies, so that I can deepen my knowledge and also capture the best moments for the clients.



TOP TIPS to ensure that diversity inclusion is present in the approach of photography documentation within a library setting.

1. TIP ONE Firstly I think it’s extremely important to understand your local area and what interests them. What will draw the public into your library for your event? Excitement produces the best moments. You need activities for all ages, with a diverse range of subjects.

2. TIP TWO Do your research! Find out as much about the project brief and event site in advance so that you can give your client the diverse angles that they require.

3. TIP THREE Don't be afraid to ask attendees or creatives if they have any disabilities or access needs. This will enable you to communicate with the venue and organisers, and it will help you to determine how much time to allocate to each photography session. It will also allow the photographer to obtain information about which poses the clients will be comfortable in.

4. TIP FOUR A photographer needs some room to maneuver around the crowds to capture the best angles and expressions, and the more natural light the better. Work with your photographer to discuss how many will be in attendance and where would be the best place for them to stand. Think about wheelchair users and access points.

5. TIP FIVE Always ask permission, be polite and respectful of the wishes of others.





PRODUCING CHECKLIST Congratulations on settling on a project theme and taking the plunge to deliver a new arts activity. If you have embedded diversity and inclusion into the heart of the project activity, remember to also analyse how the project will be produced as a whole. For maximum success and engagement of the project ensure that you have referenced your checklist to look at tasks to be undertaken before the event, on the day of the event, and following the event.


Think about your library area and demographics - what events are needed and what would appeal to people? What does the area celebrate? What does the area need more of? What could you produce better? Remain in constant communication with the event organiser. Request a copy of their public liability insurance and risk assessment, to cover the public and the venue during the event. Establish get in and get out times remember that the event may require the library to be accessible outside of normal opening hours. Exchange layout plans and technical requirements. Remember that some of the bookshelves and furnishings may be nonmoveable, and be aware of performance space and height restrictions. Clarify who is selling tickets. Is the price accessible?



Always have a plan B in place, just in case things do not work out as planned i.e. artist/ staff sickness, event cancellations etc. When marketing any themed event in a library setting, it is essential to think about and plan how to attract the right audience to come along to the event. It is always a good idea to 'think outside the box’. How can you market an event to attract the regular library users as well as the non library users in your community? Request a marketing/ tour guide pack from the visiting artist or company. This will enable your staff to read more about the event, the artist and technical requirements, and it will usually include pre-made marketing copy. Request it as an electronic copy so it can be distributed to staff via email and printed if needed. Discuss marketing angles and ensure all relevant logos and event links are included on all publicity. Use clear language and provide accessible formats. Use the list of target audiences below as part of your marketing checklist to determine which people or organisations might be interested in your library arts event: Attendees of contemporary arts events who like to try something ‘different’ People who live and work locally, and further afield. Teachers who are gathering lesson plan ideas. Special interest groups. Local artists who wish to build on artistic practice and learning. Families looking for community arts activity. Literacy advocates. Higher and Further Education college students.

Funders and key stakeholders Arts programmers, theatre directors, gallery curators and arts managers visiting and being inspired by the work.


Make sure that a fire warden and first aider are on site for the event. Set up the event space(s) to ensure that they are accessible and will enable all attendees to have a pleasant experience. Be conscious of access requirements around parking and unloading. Provide a 'Green Room area' for the artist(s) to get ready in before the event. Make sure that there is a member of staff to greet people at the door when they arrive to make them feel special and to create a wonderful experience for them. Request a spreadsheet of attendees names for numbers and health and safety reasons, especially if the event occurs after hours. Ensure that any participants or audience members who have access requirements are supported e.g seating reserved at the front for the hard of hearing or wheelchair users. Inform people about general housekeeping rules i.e. toilets, fire procedures and other pieces of useful information. It is a good idea to have some of these clearly printed out too so people can look at them at their own pace. Provide photography permission slips to attendees and display photography signage. Where possible document your experience via a digital format so this can be accessed/displayed online in the



future as a reference to your portfolio of work. Distribute evaluation forms. Keep a 360 degree focus to ensure all aspects are running smoothly. Have appropriate staffing levels to assist with the day and to tidy and reset the space.

permission from parents / guardians for under age participants. Record what you have learnt and share your findings with other staff members. Create a document which all staff members can easily access, and which they can update (if needed) in the future.


Evaluation is a process that is key to helping any organisation develop and grow. Remember that when working on any evaluation it is best not to leave it to the end of the arts programme as an afterthought. Thinking about evaluation early on enables you to process, learn and collect valuable project data. It upskills the organisation so that you can improve on what worked well and what did not work well moving forward. Collect feedback from the audience, creatives and staff members. This is really important in order to understand what worked well, what needs to be improved for next time, and to feed any findings into the evaluation. How will you collect the feedback? It is best to think about collecting it in a simple, exciting way. Keep feedback forms straightforward and make sure you ask for the relevant information that you need i.e postcodes, email addresses to add to mailing lists, age, library borrower number etc. Always remember to adhere to the General Data Protection Regulation rules (GDPR): People are quite willing to fill in feedback forms if they do not look daunting. Think about other ways you could collect feedback i.e sticker charts for children or voice pops. Just remember to get







No culture can live if it attempts to be exclusive. MAHATMA GANDHI



WHO ARE WE? Lyrici Arts is a Black led organisation based in Medway, Kent, which works in partnership with local organisations and authorities to address diversity inclusion via arts programming. Seeking to create theatre, festival and arts programmes that champion inclusivity and social change, all partnership activity that we produce is underpinned in consultation and evaluation. Passionate about touring theatre, Lyrici Arts were part of Arts Council England’s flagship national touring project ‘The Collaborative Touring Network’, in partnership with Battersea Arts Centre from 2016-19. The Collaborative Touring Network was supported by Arts Council England Strategic Touring Fund, Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and Garfield Weston Foundation. Lyrici Arts are also currently one of five national partners within The Moving Roots Touring Network, in partnership with Battersea Arts Centre from 2019-22. The project is supported by the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and the Garfield Weston Foundation.

our work as an example of the Creative Case for diversity in the South East. From February to July 2019, we worked closely with Kent Libraries to explore and celebrate a famous children's classic, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, across nine of their libraries in North Kent. Funded by Arts Council England and Lyrici Arts, the programme featured a touring ballet to three of the larger hubs, a series of professional and staff led creative workshops, a life-sized Mad Hatters Tea Party installation; and staff training and continued professional development for libraries. The public activity was cross artform and for people of all ages. For library arts programming consultancy or for more information about Lyrici Arts or The Classics project please visit:

Lyrici Arts have a successful track record of devising and leading arts library projects. In 2017 we devised and produced ‘Legacy’ - a programme of 15 African and Caribbean theatre and literature events within six Medway community libraries, in partnership with Medway Council. Funded by Arts Council England, we encompassed storytelling, film screenings, steel pans, a live band, food, and much more. Arts Council England pinpointed







Diversity is the one thing we all have in common. Celebrate it every day. UNKNOWN



The idea for this project originated from our love of libraries, which was passed down to us at a very young age by our parents. Libraries and books have enriched the lives of many for so long and we hope that there is always a place for them in our society for ever more. Libraries are important jewels in our communities.

A special thank you to all of the creatives who agreed to take part in this project.

The story of Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland by Lewis Carroll is one that will never age. It is a story that will always expand people’s minds and take them on a magical journey, regardless of culture, age, background or class.

Thank you to the National Portfolio organisations who took part in our training session: Battersea Arts Centre, Cambridgeshire County Council, and Farnham Maltings.

Thank you Mr Carroll for inspiring generations - past, present and future, with the story of Alice. We would also like to thank everyone who has been a part of this project. Thank you to the members of the public who came along to the range of events.

Thank you to the practitioners featured within this toolkit: Wendy Daws, Strangeface Theatre Company, Natasha Steer, Christopher Sacre, Jasmine Haskell, Let's All Dance, and Alison Lewis Photography.

To Matthew Kerr (Service Manager, Dartford Gravesham & Swale for Libraries Registrations and Archives), and his District Librarians and staff in the North Kent libraries, thank you all for your hard work and kindness. Kent Libraries continue to provide a brilliant service for the people of Kent. Supported using public lottery funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England.


"I can't go back to yesterday because I was a different person then." - said Alice






YOU MADE IT TO THE END! Diversity and inclusion are a broad spectrum, so do not rest on your laurels as policies and agendas change regularly. Keep yourself informed and ask for advice. Most importantly - do not be afraid to try, you never know what a difference you might be making. Happy producing!




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