Such questions can be the starting point for further investigation of silence and sound. For instance, have the children ever tried to concentrate in a noisy environment? What effect does noise have on our ability to focus? We can test this by inviting the children to a memory challenge. The children must listen carefully and memorise a number of items on a list you will read to them (this could be types of toys or fruit for example). Before you start, ask some of the children to produce interfering noise while you read. Can the other children still hear the words you are reading out loud? How many items on the list can they remember? For the second round, ask everyone to be silent before you start reading another list. Afterwards, the children can compare the number of items they could remember when it was noisy to when there was quiet.
Investigating silence can be truly fascinating, particularly for city children. Investigating acoustics also provides many opportunities to be very loud! After exploring silence, the children might like to test how much noise they could possibly make together. Perhaps this is the right time to bring ear plugs to work?