Thursday, 9 September 2010

Back to School...and a sparkly sink!

Both my youngsters returned to school this week, my lovely daughter to Sixth Form (I still don't know quite how that's happened so quickly!) and my teenage boy to Year 9! Next week, it's back to school for me too as my after school art & craft clubs begin! Once all four clubs are up and running, I shall be making and creating with up to 80 children each week...and I am so looking forward to it!

I love to hear the children's ideas and to see what designs they come up with! Last term, we made coasters using old CDs and DVDs and, as the World Cup was underway, I had made a football-themed example and mosaic example for those that were not into football.

Without exception, the boys all made football coasters and the girls made mosaic ones!
I have always been fascinated by the "nature versus nuture" debate...are boys and girls conditioned to have different tastes or are they just born that way? What do you think?

I am a keen recycler and this crosses over into my after school art & craft clubs, not only because it is eco-friendly, but because I aim to show the children that you don't need a lot of expensive materials and equipment to be creative and have fun!

We made football trophies and goblets using plastic bottles, recycled cardboard, masking tape and papier mache - they looked fantastic once they had been painted gold and silver!

The children did some observed drawing using a charcoal pencil: apple and banana in a striped bowl. I found the end results very interesting:

These are some of the drawings from the Foundation & Key Stage 1 group - children aged 3-7. I love the different interpretations...the way that some children have drawn the fruit and bowl as separate pieces and how, for some, the fruit was hovering above the bowl rather than in it! I was most fascinated by the drawings produced by twin girls who are the youngest in the group, which can be seen at the bottom of this photo. The drawings are so similar, even though they didn't draw them together - they didn't even see each others drawings until they took them home!

So my sink will be sparkling again next week as I wash the empty pots, sticky spreaders and dirty fact, it's not just the sink that sparkles during term time...glitter seems to get everywhere!

I'm really looking forward to going back to school!

Bye for now,


  1. Good question - boys - nature or nurture - could see some answers to that with Gareth Malone's programme tonight as he works with Primary School boys. We've loved all his programmes, very inspirational young man.
    Hope you enjoy being back at school, I'm sure your pupils will thoroughly enjoy attending your Clubs.

  2. It sounds like you really enjoy your job :)

    The nature v Nuture thing is very interesting - whilst nuture can sway stuff a little, I strongly believe most of it is nature & therefore 'built' in.

  3. Hi Rebecca,

    I also help at an afterschool art club, though only once a week. I love watching how each creation unfolds.

    Today we did finger painting on a canvas and then used a fine line pen to turn the finger prints into people, bugs, butterfles etc. We had fourteen kids and each canvas was unique.

    Enjoy your art club next week.]


  4. That is a bit spooky about the twins. I've always loved football as has one of my best (female) friends - altho we know we are the exception to the rule.

  5. I love glitter, I've got such strong memories of using it in childhood Christmas crafts and all the associated magic of Christmas, I was rather sad when my two got a bit old to be stickily spreading it everywhere. That's really interesting about the twins' artwork, I'm starting to think I'd like to do some woskshops one distant day in the future with children, they always have such fresh interpretations of things without worrying about what is 'right'. xx