We continue our series looking at this years’ Good Practice Centres, with Moorlands Primary School sharing their hints and tips on making connections in the arts world, and how it can benefit your setting.
At Moorlands both staff and pupils have had many opportunities to work alongside people
whose jobs are based in the arts e.g. visiting artists, musicians, theatre groups etc. Over the years, we have had mixed experiences and sometimes it is difficult to judge which choices will prove successful. While running Arts Award, we have been able to work with a range of artists and arts organisations who have enabled us to provide high quality arts experiences for our pupils.
Where to start?
The Arts Award website has some great links to other people in your area who deliver Arts Award, via ‘Arts Award near you’ and Arts Award Centre Map. From this you’ll be able to identify similar settings to your own with the possibility of sharing successful projects and identify a wider range of arts specialists to link with.
In addition to this, Arts Award Supporter has a map of organisations who have committed to supporting the delivery of Arts Award. Sometimes these organisations are willing to create bespoke arts experiences based on your own required outcomes as we have found with our regional museum services.
Regional Bridge Organisations are there to champion the arts and will support you at all stages of Arts Award delivery, including making links between educational settings and the arts and culture sectors. This can be helpful if you’re looking for arts specialists to work with in your setting or would like to find out about funding for a particular Arts Award project you are planning.
Through an Arts Connect West Midlands hub, we were able to make links and work in collaboration with the Birmingham Hippodrome Theatre, Birmingham and Bishop Perowne College, Worcester to deliver our second Arts Award Explore project ‘An E-Pic Journey’, funded by Arts Connect. Pupils were able to work with staff from the Hippodrome Theatre, musicians and digital media specialists to explore their responses to local landmarks and places of interest on the route between our two schools.
Local Arts Organisations / Arts Supporters
On many occasions, staff and pupils have been involved in arts based projects which have been directly linked to the connections that the school has made with our local museum services and art gallery. They have been able to support projects that we have planned ourselves as well as suggesting our school as willing participants for arts projects run by local or regional arts organisations. Often, these projects are funded, so come with no cost to the school; can give pupils opportunity to see exhibited art work; and have given the pupils opportunities to work with experts in the arts and experience of a wider range of art forms e.g. video art.
Looking for future opportunities
We plan to maintain our current links with local museum and music services to provide high quality arts experiences for our pupils. Possible links with secondary schools who deliver Arts Award Bronze, Silver and Gold Awards is something that we hope to explore to identify areas where pupils may be able to work alongside each other on their Arts Award journey.