J is for Joining resource

J is for Joining resource © Tate

This resource aims to:

  • Extend and deepen student learning in the gallery through meaningful encounters with art and artworks
  • Support conversation through looking, thinking and participating.(making, performing, listening…)
  • Engage students with art and artworks through contemporary artists’ practice.

We trust teachers’ expertise to adapt the resources according to their group’s ability. Have fun and experiment with the resource. Activities can be broken down or expanded.

We suggest teachers use the questions in the resources to help frame group discussion – this could be a whole group, smaller groups or in pairs. There are no wrong answers.


  • In pairs, chose one artwork and using the column on the right write words that describe it. Rip them and put them on the floor in direction to a second artwork.
  • Use the second column to write words that describe the second artwork and rip them off to complete a joining line of words on the floor. The words do not have to be in proximity.
  • The activity looks into how language connects, changes, creates new associations, and how artworks share and not share similarities or exchange values.

If you have additional questions about the resource, how to use this resource with a school group or if they are interested in other resources please contact the Schools & Teachers team.

About this activity

This resource was developed by artist Kate Squires, considering the use of language and language itself as an object in the gallery.

In Kate’s words, it explores the journey from
words to forms
forms to meaning
meaning to words