Art and Design – Whole-School Values Project
We have been working on a whole-school project, inspired by our school values, which gave children from reception to year 6 the opportunity to explore the values (kindness, honesty, trust, determination, resilience, respect, equality, freedom, excellence, confidence, courage and responsibility) in a creative, artistic way.
In year 1&2, the children were visited by local police officers; during this exciting visit, they discussed many of our values, in particular responsibility and courage, and asked the officers questions about their important role within our community. The children then drew beautiful illustrations, using fine-liner pens and coloured pencils, of the officers with their dog. In addition to the police visit, lots of other exciting art projects took place in KS1 during our School Values Project: Miss Sneller’s class went to the Pleasaunce to collect leaves and twigs to create artwork inspired by the values, while Miss Taylor’s class organised a food bank designed Andy Warhol style soup cans displaying the values using a combination of paint and collage.
Children in year 3&4 took inspiration from the artwork of Roy Lichtenstein, creating stunning school-value pop-art designs. In year 5&6, children ‘re-designed’ Planet Earth, thinking about how our school values could help to make the world a more equal, safe and sustainable place for animals and humans to live. Selecting images and objects to reflect their own values, children used collage and mixed-media techniques to create their ideal Planet Earth.
We were lucky to be offered an art workshop, led by the RA and funded by Chestertons. An artist and life-model came in to school and ran a portraiture class for 30 children from year 5, which was absolutely fantastic. The children explored a range of portrait drawing techniques using charcoals and chalks. It was a really brilliant day with some stunning outcomes.
Lots of creative art and design projects have been taking place in reception as well. The children created some wonderful dinosaur 3D pictures and, as part of their Pirates topic, they drew treasure maps and used wax and paint washes to write secret pirate messages. To celebrate Diwali, children designed and made beautiful diva lamps using clay, which they then decorated using colourful paint.
As part of their ‘Rainforest Day’ celebrations, year 1&2 used their observation skills to design close-up animal-print patterns as well as animal drawings and sketches. In DT, they have been focussing on textiles, using cutting, sticking and sewing skills to design and make sock puppets.
Linked to their learning around Fantastic Mr Fox in literacy, children in year 3&4 studied the well-known illustrations of Quentin Blake before recreating their favourite illustration using pencil and watercolour. In DT, children in year 3&4 have been baking bread. They carried out market research, tasting and analysing the appearance and flavour of a variety of bread, before designing, preparing and baking their own.
Year 5&6’s first art project of 2018 has been linked to Van Gogh’s painting, Starry Night. After exploring the painting in drama and learning about the fascinating life and work of Van Gogh, children recreated Starry Night using a range of media including pencil, pastel and watercolour; they then brought their paintings to life in literacy by writing tension-building narratives set within the painting.
During International Week, year 5&6 based their learning around Mexico. They studied the vibrant colours of Mexican artwork and tapestries before creating their own colourful pieces inspired by the ‘colours of Mexico.’ In DT, children researched Mexican cuisine, before preparing and cooking quesadillas with salsa. In science, year 5&6 have been studying the life-cycle of plants; linked to this, children created botanical artwork using magnifying glasses to help achieve detail.
Adventure Learning Programme
We are now into our 2nd year of partnership with Wide Horizons, along with the rest of the Compass schools. Our aim is for at least 70% of children at Halstow to access adventure learning during the current academic year. The following year we are aiming for 100% of children. We were part of many successful adventure learning programmes last year, such ‘Boys Together’, a Key Stage One trip to the Environment Centre and, of course, Year 4 and Year 6 school journey.
This is a child’s feedback from the Year 6 school journey:
“School journey was definitely the best highlight of my school life. It was so fun trying to make new friends with the people from different schools. Overall, it was the best experience I have had at school. I really liked the games and activities we done there. I enjoyed learning about people smuggling in different places. I really enjoyed the farm and that massive play area and the mannequin challenge. Swanage was the best week of my school life.”
This year we have already been on the Year 4 school journey to Wrotham and Year 6 school journey to Swanage. Due to our close partnership with Wide Horizons, we can now communicate easily the children’s preferences and ideas for activities, therefore tailoring the experiences even more.
This is a child’s feedback from the ‘Boys Together’ programme:
“I thought the trip to Wrotham was actually the best time I ever had. I met new friends from different schools, but they were all very similar to the ones at my school. We played awesome games together. We also did some fun and helpful activities and always were there for each other. I would rate it 10/10. “
Due to the success of the ‘Boys Together’ programme, we participated again this year and also took part in a similar ‘Girls Together’ programme.
As Key Stage One thoroughly enjoyed their trip to the Wide Horizons Environment Centre last year, we organised another day trip there for all the children in Year 1&2. This time, the trip is based on their ‘Once Upon A Time’ topic; this will be a Literacy-based trip in which adventure learning will help the children with their fairy tale writing.
Going forward, we would also like Reception to be involved with our exciting adventure learning activities. We are aiming for them to attend a day trip to the Environment Centre in the near future, in which they will be treated to a specialised Early Years experience.