Young ‘urban pioneers’ from St Nicholas-at-Wade Church of England Primary have been exploring street art in the heart of a busy city.
Children from Years 3 and 4 went on a special mission to Canterbury where they investigated the range of murals, graffiti, statues and other public art on walls, buildings, in shopping centres, parks and underpasses.
It is part of a project comparing and contrasting the human and physical geography of their home village with the city and other urban areas, using four figure grid references and landscapes.
Their field work also included conducting a survey of visitors to Canterbury to find out what sort of street art they like to see in a city, plus their reasons for visiting and how they travelled there.
The youngsters have also been inspired to adapt some of the graffiti they saw into their own powerful works of art. They were helped by visiting specialist Leon AKA ‘XO’ from Graffiti Stars who explained the techniques of style and colour blending needed to create stand-out displays.
Teachers Sara Patterson, Carolyn Jermy and Collette Palmer organised the inspiring learning activities. They said: “The children are so impressed with what they discovered, they are hooked. Their parents were astounded with the graffiti art work and have told us it is displayed on the wall at home.
“They have also been learning street dance in PE and we have been really impressed with some of their choreography – Diversity had better watch out.”
Head Teacher Taralee Kennedy is a firm supporter of educational visits enhancing classroom learning.
She said: “This kind of enrichment is so important to the children’s learning – it provides context and meaning to the work that we do in class as well as challenging them and inspiring them.”
The pupils were working from a study brief that encourages them to become ‘urban pioneers’. It states: “Hop on the bus and take a trip downtown where the lights are bright, and every street has a story to tell. Explore with fresh eyes the art of the city, then capture a moment in time – perhaps a reflection on a building or a shadow passing by.
“Make a map of your home town and find out how things have changed. Has time changed town life for the better? How could you improve the urban environment? The possibilities are endless. What will you choose? You’re an urban pioneer, so get ready to go.”