North East awarded funding to develop creative learning opportunities with Tyneside schools

10 April 2019

Cultural institutions win funds to support teachers in Tyneside

Two leading North East arts and cultural organisations, The Forge and Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums, have been awarded funding by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation through their Teacher Development Fund. 

This funding will support teachers to work with artists and local arts and cultural resources in order to increase creative learning opportunities for their pupils. The programme is funded through the Teacher Development Fund awarded by Paul Hamlyn Foundation.

Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums (TWAM) will be working with ten schools from across Tyneside.  Over two years teachers from each of the schools will work with TWAM’s museums and galleries to draw on inspiration from museum collections via visual arts and creative writing to support pupils’ speech and language development through enquiry based learning approaches.

TWAM will work with eight schools that form the West End Schools Trust, Bridgewater Community Primary School, Broadwood Primary School, Canning Street Primary School, Hawthorn Primary School, Moorside Community Primary School, St John's Primary School, St Paul's Primary School, Wingrove Primary School, along with Hadrian Primary School in South Tyneside and Western Community Primary School in North Tyneside.

The Forge, a participatory arts commissioning and producing agency, based in County Durham will partner with seven schools from across the North East region, two of which are special educational needs and disabilities settings. Their project - an innovative programme that introduces photography to support literacy skills in the classroom - has grown out of a successful exploratory project funded by Paul Hamlyn Foundation which was delivered by The Forge and partner school Bede Academy in Blyth. The new work builds on the positive findings from the pilot and, over the next two years, will equip teachers with the arts-based skills they need to deliver the same outcomes. Their photography-based approach is based on a wealth of academic research that indicates that “visual literacy approaches” can support disadvantaged students in their creative writing skills.

Tony Harrington, Executive Director of The Forge is delighted at the news of this award:

We are thrilled to have been selected as one of the seven successful national projects for this award.  It will provide us with a fabulous opportunity to work collaboratively with artists and educationalists to make the curriculum more engaging and purposeful. We are hoping that this work will contribute to ongoing national debates about what a “broad and balanced” curriculum should look like, how we deliver creativity in the classroom and how teachers themselves might pioneer and bring about these changes.”

Bill Griffiths, Head of Programmes at Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums said:

Working with schools is an important route for children and young people to engage with arts and culture, especially those who are disadvantaged or disabled. This project will draw on the skills of museum learning teams, teachers and artists to explore the potential of creative learning opportunities as a focus for curriculum focussed learning and the development of skills, knowledge and experience.

Moira Sinclair, Chief Executive at Paul Hamlyn Foundation said:

“Learning through the arts can engage and inspire young people, support key educational outcomes and develop skills that prepare them for the next phase of their lives. For many young people, particularly those experiencing the most disadvantage, the only opportunity to gain access to arts education is at school. That’s why we are delighted to announce the seven partnerships that have received a grant from our Teacher Development Fund. We were impressed by the quality of the applications and look forward to seeing how the projects equip teachers with the skills and confidence needed to provide quality and impactful education and learning through the arts.”