After a year of working on ‘The Lorax’ in the art studio, there is definitely an appreciation for trees at Allerton CE Primary. Together, we have discovered that they are the superheroes for our environment and ‘unless we care then nothing is going to get better.’
The daily dedication of ‘The Forest Man’ -who over the past forty years has single handedly, planted a forest-inspired 5RA that we can make a difference. Succinct and powerful they certainly conveyed why trees are essential for all living things in their 5 word slogans.
Colourful prints, sewing, sequins, buttons and Pom Poms created Truffula Tree art. Perseverance was definitely required when:
threading the eye of a needle
sewing (running stitch)
wrapping wool around card templates for Pom Poms!
Creating the prints
Learning to follow and listen to instruction as well as collaborate, were the main ingredients for 5RA’s dance and baking sessions. Like all good learning journeys 5RA were definitely in the pit during their arts fortnight, but as Friday’s celebration shared their challenges were overcome-the performance was AMAZING!
Thank you to the parents who were able to make the celebration and share in the learning of 5RA. Below are some smiling faces and lovely comments that capture Friday afternoon.
‘The dance was wonderful! I’m so impressed with the whole class. The artwork was fantastic and the statements on trees were powerful. Thank you all!’
‘As usual, a totally amazing afternoon and so fantastic to see all the different work that Year 5 have created-thank you teachers.’
‘I absolutely enjoyed learning with the kids and it was an amazing experience as always. Thank you.’
A dream became a reality this year, when the Artistic Education Project between Lille and Leeds happened. Because of this partnership, nine pupils were able to visit Lille and join their French peers in dance workshops that culminated in an exciting collaborative performance at a hip hop centre called Flow to an audience of over a hundred.
Under the tuition of Mustafa and his colleague, our boys -along with pupils from Year 6 and Year 7 cohorts in Lille schools -created two ambitious dances. The choreography was impressive, and all our nine students learnt so much. This included the history of hip hop, translated by Titus –the International Relations Officer for Leeds City Council- new dance steps as well as counting in French…cinq, six, sept, huit!
The final performance incorporated the dances worked on and choreographed by Gee (an amazing dance teacher who works week on week with a group of our boys in Key Stage 2) as well as our very own talented dance teacher Mrs Lynch.
New friendships were made, precious memories created and aspirations raised. A new city, a different language and an exciting dance venue and stage has certainly impacted the lives of nine hardworking students. Well done boys for being brilliant and embracing your learning in France.
Hopefully, we will be hosting our French friends next year with an itinerary that will inspire and educate all the young people involved.
Ace Art council have submitted their responses to the brief shared by our French friends in Lille. Excitingly, their art will be framed and exhibited alongside that of Lille children at Gare Saint-Sauveur.
Because of the Artistic Education Project between Lille and Leeds, nine pupils from Allerton CE Primary will have the opportunity to see the Mom’Art exhibition as part of their itinerary in the dance project happening at ‘FLOW’ Lille. Hopefully, these pieces will feature:
Going on a tree hunt is how Reception started their Arts Fortnight. Amazingly, every hunt was a ‘beautiful day’ and we were not scared! As a result, we discovered the giant weeping Willow, tall elegant Silver Birches and the orchard where our fruit trees grow. RTE witnessed the blossom of the apple trees, RKF saw the eyes of the Silver Birch and RKM were impressed by the giant Weeping Willow.
Creating our own trees from corrugated card, ink through a straw and large bricks was fun as well as challenging:
‘The Lorax’ by Dr Seuss is the book that all of Allerton CE Primary are using as an inspiration for their Arts Fortnight. In noticing, wondering and thinking, we all became familiar with the first page of this book. Reading the beginning, acting out the beginning as well as watching the beginning of the animation definitely shared how desolate ‘The far end of town’ was.
Surprisingly, this dismal setting was once glorious with mile after mile of Truffula Tree. Brown Bar-ba-loots happily played in the shade of the Truffula Trees; Swamee Swans sang, swam and flew in this glorious place and Humming fish splashed in the ‘rippulous’ pond. This glorious place inspired our artwork. Well done Reception for mixing the colours required for your background of sky and grass as well as the secondary colours needed for those Truffula Trees.
Thank you Mrs Lynch for the collaborative dance with RTE and RKF…Swamee Swans definitely flew in this glorious place and the Humming fish starred in RKM’s dance!
From sheer abandonment in dance as big movements captured the joy of early spring with its delicate pink blossom, waving daffodils and dangling catkins, to the need for fine motor skills in creating puppets for our glorious settings created in paint, Year 1CC certainly immersed themselves in their Arts Fortnight.
The Weeping Willow, Silver Birches and Apple trees inspired our poetry, riddles and dance, and Dr Seuss’ ‘The Lorax’ for our own nonsense creatures, puppets, paintings and stories. Working with plasticine and cardboard, inspired the creation of sculptures and through drama, our stories were brought to life. Thank you Year 1CC for being tough tortoises and reflective hens, although the process was sometimes difficult you persevered and went again.
Locating the Silver Birches
How tall is the Weeping Willow?
Creating in small bricks…
Creating the backdrops…
Adding the trees and detail
Thank you for all the parents and interested adults who gave up their afternoon to share in 1CC’s learning. Dancing with Mrs Lynch as part of the carousel of activities certainly raised heartbeats! There was definite calm in the art studio, deliciousness in the café –thank you Mrs Walker- as well as lots of reading of storyboards, stories and riddles in the classroom. Here are some of the lovely comments about the afternoon:
‘Absolutely wonderful. It’s great to see what the children get up to as we only hear bits and pieces at home. Also loved the opportunity to work with the children (despite initial reservations!) and was really good for us to do what the children have been doing with them. Many thanks for all the hard work!’ Charlotte’s mums
‘As always it is really lovely to learn about Germanas’ learning. He was so proud to show his story and his puppet. I really enjoyed the cooking and book time and the dance maybe not as much! Thank you for a very nice and busy work celebration.’ Germanas’ mum
‘The whole afternoon was really fun, and I had a really lovely time with Ivy. She really enjoyed showing me her work that she’s worked hard on over the last couple of weeks. Great idea.’ Ivy’s mum
‘We really enjoyed the afternoon especially joining in/viewing the dancing and the amazing paintings in the art studio. Great to see the storyboards the children had done and to spend some time reading them. Well done for all the hard work teachers!’
‘Very creative. Amazing paintings by the kids. The best thing was the dance!’
What a privilege it has been to work with Year 6. To drench them in vocabulary- which they have then made sense of- so that words and phrases were brought to life in dance, story and art.
Collaboration and trust have been integral to this process, as has ‘having a go’ and editing and revising. Thank you 6SK and 6LM for responding to feedback and putting yourselves wholeheartedly into the fortnight. As a cohort you oozed creativity, energy and enthusiasm. Don’t be afraid to continue to use your imaginations, dare to explore and express yourself through the arts…it is a beautiful medium.
Hopefully these photographs taken by John Sherbourne on the afternoon of the Celebration, as well as the comments from interested adults and parents will make you smile. Keep the focus and believe that you can.
‘Thoroughly enjoyed seeing what my Grandson and his classmates have done. Very impressed.’
‘I really enjoyed seeing Oscar’s work and sharing his learning. The interactive format was fun.’
‘An interesting and fun afternoon. Lots of activities. It was good to see what the children have been learning.’
‘A lovely afternoon. Thoroughly enjoyed every aspect and the opportunity to share (and experience) some of my son’s learning over the fortnight. Thank you.’
Collaborative poems capturing a groups’ freeze frame of interesting vocabulary, as well as responses to reading tasks were just some of the challenges 4SP completed and uploaded onto the art studio google classroom- thank you to Mrs Potter for driving this innovative learning. The theme was trees but the direction once again differed from the previous classes’ response.
‘Skeletal frames tangled like a knot against a grey backdrop…the forest shivers and quivers…bare limbs stand frozen in the frost…’ were just some of the phrases from 4SP’s poems that inspired Mrs Lynch’s choreography.
The Tunnel Tree…
The Connecting Tree
Their poems also provided the stimulus for their collages. The process incorporated their observational drawings, a growing appreciation and understanding of how to apply the skills of collage as well as the sheer delight of glitter! A third year graphic and design art student will build on their collage experience by working with them in a fortnight.
Once again, Friday’s celebration was a platform to share all the learning that had happened with an interested adult. The feedback was really encouraging. Here is one of the lovely comments:
“What can I say?-just fantastic! So impressed with all the children. Amazing dancing; beautiful art work;warm, lovely environment-just so impressed.”
Listening and enjoying
Admiring and discussing
Last Tuesday, our ACE art ambassadors, also returned to Leeds Beckett University for their final workshop. Animation, risographs, printing and book binding were the order of the day and thoroughly enjoyed by the fourteen. Hopefully their reflections from the day will be uploaded onto the art studio google classroom within the week.
Dr Seuss’ book ‘The Lorax’ again provided the hook for the art. However, the bare trees of Winter in our school grounds, contrasted with the colourful ‘Truffula Trees’.
Counting the Silver Birch trees
Arriving in the apple orchard
Because of this, seasons were discussed. 1RC are now familiar with the parts of the tree –roots, trunk, bark, branches, twigs, buds, blossom, leaves-and have a growing understanding of a trees importance in keeping our world healthy. Creating our own trees from plasticine reinforced this vocabulary as well as encouraging fine motor skills in the sculpting.
This learning meant we understood why the ‘Once-ler’s’ actions had consequences. Through small world-lego and wooden blocks-the children reflected the story in their creations. When the factory was ‘biggered and biggered and biggered’ the groups joined together to create a polluted setting where animals could no longer live.
The ‘glorious’ settings …
Building the factories…
Settings of the ‘glorious’ place were made using small world and then painted. In our paintings we demonstrated
skill in mixing colours-especially secondary as well as a brown
ability to create a background
understanding of when to use a thick or thin brush
Painting the backdrops
Adding the detail with drawing materials
These settings were then used as the backdrop for the group animations. Thank you to Mr Cosgrove for piecing the clips and sound together. The paintings were beautiful and brought colour and smiles to the art studio.
The dance, choreographed by Mrs Lynch had Robins, Sparrows, Blue-tits, Owls and Woodpeckers swooping, flying, busily building nests, chirping and eating.
Creating the willow tree
Moving in the breeze
Moments of stillness as well as their own simple yet effective bird stories brought a smile to Friday’s celebration as 1RC relished their final performance. Thank you -parents and grandparents -for being an appreciative audience. The workshops that followed appeared to give those that attended a taste of what we had been up to over the fortnight. Here are some of the lovely comments and photographs that captured the sharing of 1RC’s Arts fortnight.
Playing in the ‘Lerkim’
‘It’s been a lovely afternoon. I liked the way we got to take part in different activities as well as seeing their work. The work they have done in the Art Studio is fantastic. It’s a great opportunity that they get to work in here in blocks. Tom has loved working in here very much and was super proud to show me his work. Thank you.’
‘We had lots of fun! We enjoyed all the activities! Great job Year 1RC.’
‘Everything was amazing. Art amazing. So proud of Scarlett and grateful for the teachers’ hard work and their support for Scarlett. I enjoyed dancing and making things. Just amazing!’
‘I really enjoyed that we were split into groups. It made it less hectic and more enjoyable as well as easier to enjoy 1:1 time with my child. I enjoyed seeing the book being expressed in different ways.’
‘Excellent presentation by the children. It contained information about the importance of trees. I enjoyed the rotation and interaction. I know a great deal of effort, planning and care had been put in by staff and pupils alike. Enjoyable. Well done to all.’
‘A fantastic afternoon!! Loved the short bursts of dance, quiz, art cooking and reading. We both really enjoyed it…wouldn’t change anything. Thank you.’
Well done Year 2HS for creating this 5 word slogan in response to your learning. You realised how important trees are for animals and your dance –choreographed beautifully by Miss Savage- shared this to an impressed audience. We learnt together how an acorn seed grew shoots and roots and how over many years, this sapling became the mighty beast.
Roots sucking up the minerals
Trunk and branches growing
‘The Oak Tree’ a poem by Tony Peek, was an opportunity to initially add an action as we attempted to recite it off by heart. The line ‘I hear its branches filled with birds, when summer times begun,’ inspired the idea for your artwork. Your striking flock of birds combined drawing and making skills. Your peacock feather drawings in pencil crayons, oil pastels, watercolour and collage provided the textures and shapes for the feathers.
Flock of birds
Our Friday Celebration coincided with ‘Take Over Day’. Special thanks MUST go to the dozen KS2 pupils who were Miss Savage, Mrs Johnston, Mrs Walker and Mrs Stott. As the feedback forms share, your introductions, explanations, questions and congratulations regarding the dance were definitely appreciated by the interested adults and your support during the afternoon certainly helped all the workshops run smoothly.
Hanging the birds
Supporting the reading of ‘The Lorax’
Cutting out the stencil
Being an interested Mrs Stott
The following comments give a glimpse to all that was seen and experienced:
“I’ve absolutely loved the afternoon, the interaction has been amazing. Would love to have longer than just the afternoon…”
“A good variety of artwork and time to develop it.”
“Involving the older children in the presentation was fantastic! The nature theme was a good topic to show the importance of climate change etc. Great that parents are able to become involved in children’s work and join in the workshops. very fun, interactive and enjoyable.”
“The session in the hall was brill. It was nice to move around the different rooms to see activities.”
“I am very impressed with everything I have seen today-particularly all the art work! The children have obviously enjoyed it and it shows how important Art is and it deserves more time in school.”
“An excellent interactive afternoon…thank you so much!”
Last Tuesday, pupils across school enjoyed and interacted with ‘The Illustrated World of Nick Sharratt’ at Leeds Central Library, as well as experiencing and appreciating the artwork next door at Leeds Art Gallery.
Thanks to John-one of our school governors-KS2’s day was captured on camera. I know the art gallery wondered what had hit them as excited pupils entered its doors and interacted with paintings, installations, prints and sculptures.
Hopefully, venturing into an art gallery will not be a one off but now a requirement when they visit a city wherever they are in the world! One pupil mesmerized by the art she saw shared: “When it’s my birthday, I’m going to ask my mum to bring me here.”
KS1 loved the day too. To see our young people pausing in front of a piece of art and commenting, smiling, dancing or pulling a face in response to what they saw definitely put a smile on my face.