No one wants to be called “the class clown” anywhere in the world except in Israel, where class clowning is encouraged and flourishing.
While medical clowns are already a well-known part of the healing routine at hospitals around the country, the educational clown phenomenon is just taking off.
Talya Safra, who has over 15 years of experience as a medical clown and is currently a clowning instructor at Seminar Hakibbutzim (the Kibbutzim College of Education, Technology and the Arts), was convinced that schools could benefit immensely from clowning therapy. Last year, with the blessing of the Education Ministry, Safra launched an Educational Clown pilot at three Israeli high schools.
The pilot was so successful that this year the project expanded to six high schools and one primary school. Safra says she is not surprised by the success of the school initiative “because today the therapeutic benefits of clowning are undisputed.”