Brief summary of activity

This exercise is a kind of brainstorming to collect topics for a radio programme.

The group is listening to different sounds and noises and discuss what the sounds remind them of. This is a sound association exercise.

Aim of the activity

The aim is to create new ideas that the group didn’t think of before. Furthermore it is a way to engage the group in listening out for unusual sounds.

Expected Outcomes

A wide range of topics.

Experience and skills required

No specific skills required.

Infrastructure, setting, resources

You need an archive of sound. The sounds should not be clear. The exercise is more productive if the sounds allow enough space for ideas.


10-20 minutes


Playback equipment (Cd player, laptop  and speakers, etc) to listen to the sounds. –

Flipchart or blackboard.

Sound Archive

How the activity should take place

All participants listen carefully to the sounds and speak out what the sounds remind them of. The trainer writes down all ideas. After listening to the sounds, the group discuss which topics could be interesting for a radio programme. Maybe there are other ideas that comes out of these topics.

Recommended max. number of participants and trainees to trainers ratio

Max. 10

Risk and possible adaptation

Be careful, it’s not the goal to guess what kind of sounds are played. The exercise is an association activity to open the mind for new ideas. It’s a kind of brainstorming.


Everybody writes down their ideas individually.

Tips for Trainers

The choice of sounds is very important. It is also possible to take a piece of sound art/feature. The sounds shouldn’t be that clear.

Requirements for participants

The participants need any specific knowledge, it’s open for all target groups.

Analysis and evaluation

Discuss the collection of ideas. While talking about the topics you can get even more ideas.


It’s possible to listen to a short piece of sound or to a longer piece. The duration depends on the attention of the group. You can stop the sound at anytime if there are already enough ideas.