Projects like these come at the top of my favourites list. Shelley First School have a ‘Creative Week’ once a year. Every class explores the same theme, accessing it through a variety of creative subjects. Artists come into the school and spend time with groups of children to produce huge montages and sculptures. Musicians help them explore sound, rhythm and instrumentation. Gardening experts take the children into the magical world of Forest School, building fairy dens and secret hiding places for adventures. Last year I ran some dance workshops on various themes from the Rainforest and Chinese New Year to the Samurai and Kings and Queens. This years theme is SPACE!
In key stage 1 we looked at the exciting story of Space Dog , and a day in the life of an astronaut, and how to use dance to portray the different characters and how they move in zero gravity.
The workshops for key stage 2 children became more experimental. I gave them the starting points and the skills to develop and they created the most amazing pieces that explored the nature of our solar system, its planets and the universe beyond. I was blown away by their imagination, diverse creativity and the way they worked so well together.
In the current education system, so often I find myself defending the importance of the arts and I will continue to do so! It’s so clear from my time on projects like these how beneficial the arts and media subjects are to so many children. It’s refreshing when schools encourage it and even take time away from extremely intense schedules to nurture the children’s learning in different ways. It’s been my pleasure to work with the staff and children at Shelley First School.