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Artsmark Award

Welcome.  There is so much on this Artsmark page, so keep scrolling down to view photos and information.  Remember to go to the links mentioned below to see more under "Art" and "Music."  As part of Artsmark, our year four children are completing an Arts award.  This is their own individual accreditation that they can get from working on lots of Arts activities.  Lots of them are mentioned here or pop into school and ask to see their work.  The year four children would love to show off their work.  Soon there will be an Arts award share experience for our children.

What is Artsmark?

The Artsmark Award is the only creative quality standard for schools and education settings, accredited by Arts Council England. They will support us to develop and celebrate our commitment to arts and cultural education.

We want to do this award to help us give our curriculum breadth and balance and to immerse our children with opportunities for cultural capital.

Why Artsmark?

  • Build young people’s confidence, character and resilience through arts and cultural education
  • Use Artsmark’s clear and flexible framework to embed creativity across our whole curriculum and use it to address school improvement priorities
  • Celebrate our long-term commitment to cultural education with pupils, parents and our local community

Outreach for the Arts

Mrs Talbot went to Hollybrook Infants school to lead a staff session about Art for Key stage one.  She took Jane Chapman with her ( a children's illustrator.)  Mrs Talbot has worked with Hollybrook Infants to develop objectives for Art for painting and drawing, and created a session about child development in Art which was full of activities that could be used to teach in a fun engaging way.  Staff from Hollybrook Infants, Shirley Infants, Hollybrook Juniors and Wordsworth Primary school were present.  This is the feedback:

We are all buzzing with ideas and looking forward to our INSET to discuss Art further across the school.  Your knowledge is brilliant and your powerpoint was powerful.  The staff from Wordsworth and Shirley were really enthusiastic too so well done!

It was great to have Jane's perspective as an artist so thank you for inviting her and I am sure that we will have her into our school very soon.

Arts Ambassadors

We met with Mr Taylor and this is what he asked us and what we said...

Why is it important that we have Art in the curriculum?

"It's important to let people be creative."

"It helps us to learn more things."

"We enjoy being expressive."

"I think it's important to get even better at art."

"I enjoy art because there are no rules, you can be creative and express yourself."

"I enjoy collecting my ideas in my Arts Award book."

What could we do to make learning about Art even better?

"We could do even more art!"

"We could help the teachers to be better at art."

"We could do more working together to make collaborative art"

So how are we fulfilling these ideas from the children?  We are completing Arts award in year four, we have regular art mindfulness sessions, teachers have contact with Mrs Talbot and Mrs Taylor to discuss Art planning in year groups, we are producing our own collaborative Art Christmas tree for the competition at Shirley Baptist Church!  We produced collaborative artwork for Harvest.  We had twenty Art students from Winchester working with us.  There are lots more ideas too.

Music Ambassadors

We met with Mr Taylor and he asked us these questions...

Why do you enjoy being part of a choir?

"It's one of my favourite hobbies.  It's good to share it with friends."

"I enjoy meeting new people and learning new things."

"I like taking part in concerts and performing in front of people."

"It helps to get out all my emotions."

"I enjoy learning new tunes and remembering the words."

What could we do improve learning in music?

"Have a wider range of groups, like a Ukele orchestra."

"Have more instrumental clubs after school."

"Have even more competitions like Foundry Lane's Got Talent."

"Do more performances in front of the school."

"Have more opportunities to perform on our instruments, like the summer concert but all year."

So how are we fulfilling these ideas from the children?  The children play their instruments to parents during Soundbites concerts in year four.  The children in year five took part in Beatboxing.  The children visit nursing homes to sing.  There are lots of opportunities to sing at our productions. We sang for Armistice day and for Harvest.  There are more ideas too.

Artsaward is an individual accreditation that our year four pupils have been working hard to achieve.  We have taken part in many arts activities, interviewed real artists and responded to their work, and shared our work in a big Artsaward exhibition.

Highlights have been our trip to the Mayflower theatre and our Self esteem singing workshop.

Please look at our photos below and come into the office if you would like to see our Arts logs!

Mr Taylor has our wonderful art collage up in his office!  Well done year four.

When did we start?

Our Artsmark Award began when Mrs Talbot and Miss Aldred began to think about our provision for the Arts and attended training last March at the Artsmark training day.

There are eight Artsmark Award Criteria:

Values and Ethos, Leadership, Children and Young People Engagement, Curriculum Design, Range of offer, Continued Professional Development, Partnership, Equality and Diversity

We have considered each of these and created an Action plan using them.

Development – Our ongoing Artsmark mural will illustrate our Artsmark journey.  This display is in our hall.  Please do come and have a look.  It is constantly changing as more year groups add their cultural Arts experiences to it.  There are a few photos below.

Development - To strengthen ownership and leadership with student Art ambassadors, becoming a mentor school for Artswork Bridge Schools Connect Program, and committing a colleague to become an Arts Award Advisor.   Year leaders will plan Artsmark activities into their year group plans.  We have embedded the Arts into our curriculum and will continue to do so.  We are now a mentor school for the Artswork Bridge Schools Connect Program.  Mrs Talbot will be trained on 5th December to be an Arts Award advisor.  This means that 90 of our children in year four will be able to get their own Arts Award using the cultural Arts experiences given to them.

Development – To use Art Ambassadors to encourage ideas, choice and pupil voice. To form relationships with local shops to display children’s Art.  Our Art ambassadors meet with our Headteacher regularly.  They give him ideas and discuss the cultural experiences that our children are offered in our school.  They share their likes and dislikes and talk about what they would like.  These ideas are then acted upon.  

Development - To add more real-life experiences both in school and through visits.  Our curriculum is rich with real-life experiences in school and through visits.  You will find many below.

Development – To increase the range of offer through more opportunities to see and take part in live performances, and participate in more Arts activities that support the curriculum.  With the help of equip arts ( ) we have now embedded "Drama in a day" to the curriculum for three of our year groups.  The drama culminates in a show for parents.   Neil Maddock also comes into school to help us by performing his One man Nativity and one Man Easter Show.  Light Up Drama company come in to work with year two and year four.  We have a drama Titanic experience in year four with Jane Glennie.  Artsaward in year four means that our children are going to see a Pantomime at the Mayflower this year!  In year six all children will be seeing a live show at the Nuffield!  Each class performs their own class assembly, year six their own final year show, year three and four have their own performance and year R, 1 and 2 have their own nativity shows.

Development – One of our team be trained to be an advisor for the Arts Award.  Artsmark will be integral in staff meetings.  To audit CPD requirements of staff in the Arts and act upon them.  Mrs Talbot is going to the training on 5th December.  We have audited our staff's CPD requirements and are acting upon those ideas given to us.  Staff meetings have been a time to reflect on our Artsmark journey.

Development – To join the Artswork Bridge Schools Connect Program.   As part of Artsaward, we are now part of this organisation.  They offer us advice and links with other Arts organisations.

Development – To improve cultural capital, we will have visits from a variety of faith groups and complete a Fair Trade project to be displayed locally.

We have built some strong partnerships with parents who have Arts skills, with local organisations who will agree to display our work or provide expertise in the Arts for our children and with other schools on the Artsmark journey.   See below for images of the work up at the Fairtrade shop in Shirley.

Pupil voice - To further pupil voice we will establish Student Arts, Dance and Music Ambassadors in consultation with our School Council.  We have appointed two Artsmark Governors.   Our governors are Mrs Jones and Miss Crispin.  They support us on our Artsmark journey by providing much needed support, time and advice.  Our Arts ambassadors meet regularly with our Headteacher; Mr Taylor.

Arts groups in school – Mrs Talbot leads an Art group for year five and six children within school time.  You can see our work on the top corridor or look below for photos!  Mrs Talbot and Mrs Taylor lead an after school Art club each Tuesday night after school for year one to six.  Our nest team create lots of beautiful art work.  Choir and Drama groups take part each week.  Big Mouth Theatre group and Streetbeatz meet weekly.

Wider Community - We will continue this provision, fostering further links within our community, and build on experiences that have meaning, such as illustrators and author visits, drama visits, and links with Southampton Music Hub, and a new Creative Arts Evening. Our children take part in Guildhall performances thanks to Miss Crispin.  Miss Crispin also led a new venture of our Creative Arts Evenings last term.  This was tremendously successful.  We have had illustrator visits, drama visits, a wonderful workshop for singing by the music service and beatboxing in year five just as a few examples!


As we have become more confident on our Artsmark journey, we have begun to offer our expertise to others.

Twenty Art students have come in for two sessions to teach in our year one, year four and year three classes.  At the end Mrs Talbot gave them a talk about being an Art co-ordinator.

Our choir sing at local nursing homes.

One of our year four classes will be giving their home-made Christmas cards to residents of a local nursing home.

We provide Artwork for display to Shirley library and to The Fairtrade shop in Shirley.

Our students have also created art work that will be displayed at Winchester University.  

We are very proud of all of the children who are helping us to complete our Artsmark award, and so grateful to all the visitors, parents and local organisations who have helped us make the Arts so exciting for our children.

There are lots more things happening very soon, watch this space!!!!

If you wish to help in any way, please speak to Mrs Talbot, Mrs Taylor or Miss Aldred.

Thanks for your support.

Art Curriculum Page

Please do visit our Art page to see some of the amazing work we've been doing in school.

Music Curriculum Page

Please do visit our Music page to see some of the amazing work we've been doing in school.

So what are we actually doing for our children?

The children loved competing in Foundry Lane's Got Talent firstly in year group teams, then in Key Stages and then finally in a whole school final.

The ceilidh that we took part in at Wordsworth school was so much fun.  Our year three and four dance club children took part and came back exhausted by the amount of dancing!  Thank you to Miss Wistow and to Mrs Whybrew for going and joining in!

We had a really wonderful creative evening full of music and Foundry Lane's Got Talent shows, and some Art work too by our Wednesday art group and Art from the curriculum across all year groups. 

Jane Chapman came in to visit us.

She taught us all about what it is like to be an illustrator of children's books and then taught us to draw!  You can look her up on the internet, she has now had 116 books published. You may even have some at home on your shelves under her name or her pretend name; Jack Tickle.  Note the photos below!

Ashley James came in to visit year six and told them all about his career as a graphic designer, and even showed his ceramic work. He has a website too, so do take time to see his work.

 Music Hub are kindly running the Big Summer Sing for us, for year R and year one children.  They also came in to do a self esteem singing workshop with us in year four.  This was so much fun.

In Art club, Andy from Koolskools came in to give us a talk all about Fair trade.  He showed us photos from when he went to India to meet the cotton farmers who produce the cotton for the factory that make clothes to sell.  We learnt all about the process of growing the cotton to creating the clothes and why fair trade is so important.  Andy has set us a project, and our Art work will soon be up in his shop on Shirley High Street!  He has interviewed some of us and taken the interviews with him to share in India!

Shirley Library have displayed some of our wire leavescreated by some children in 3GJ.  These are absolutely beautiful.  Please go and visit to see them soon!